- Food which allegedly needs little preparation prior to serving. It may be a chilled, non-sterile cooked meal or a vacuum-packed fully cooked meal. Other forms require the addition of eggs, milk, water, etc. or elaborate mixing, heating and stirring, often taking as long to prepare as the same dish cooked with fresh ingredients purchased in semi-processed form.
- noun food which is prepared and cooked before it is sold, so that it needs only heating to be made ready to eat