from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Whatever food happens to be available for a meal, especially when offered to a guest: Having arrived unannounced for supper, we had to take potluck.
- n. A meal at which each guest brings food that is then shared by all. Also called potluck supper.
- n. Whatever is available at a particular time: The scheduled flight was canceled and passengers had to take potluck on the other airlines.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A meal, especially one offered to a guest, consisting of whatever is available.
- n. Whatever is available in a particular situation.
- n. A meal consisting of whatever guests have brought, particularly from different parts of the world; a potlatch.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. Whatever may chance to be in the pot, or may be provided for a meal.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. What may chance to be in the pot, in provision for a meal; hence, a meal at which no special preparation has been made for guests.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. whatever happens to be available especially when offered to an unexpected guest or when brought by guests and shared by all
Spelled pot-luck before the 20th century, from pot + luck. The sense “meal offered by a host to an unexpected guest” dates to 1592; into the early 20th century, the word was used only to mean “meal provided by the host”. (Wiktionary)