What's that verb to describe "to heat food in a lid-covered pot without heat on"?

For example, when preparing food such as pastas you typically boil it in water for some time maybe 10 minutes or so depending on the amount, then afterwards you turn off the heat and just let it sit with the lid covered while it's being cooked inside.

What's that word to describe that process, that process of letting the food cook inside the lid-covered pot while the heat is turned off? Like, "boil the pasta for 10 minutes then turn off the heat and [that word] for another 10 minutes.

  • Your use of let it sit is quite acceptable as is @MikeM's let it stand. Neither is a single word and I don't believe that there is one. Commented Jan 11, 2013 at 18:01
  • @coleopterist That's interesting. In my native language there's a word for this action.
    – Theo
    Commented Jan 11, 2013 at 18:07

2 Answers 2


The word is stand, as in let it stand.

  • 1
    And if you want to make sure they leave the lid on, then the typical direction is: Remove from heat. Let stand, covered, 10 minutes...
    – Jim
    Commented Jan 11, 2013 at 23:41
  • That's interesting, because you can also let it sit and accomplish the same thing.
    – Robusto
    Commented Jan 13, 2013 at 17:12

As MikeM says, the most common expression is let it stand. But you could also use...

steep to soak in a liquid at a temperature under the boiling point (e.g. Steep the tea for three minutes).

  • I like this answer better than stand, because it is more precise. You can let something stand regardless of temperature (even with no liquid involved), but steep covers both conditions. +1
    – Robusto
    Commented Jan 12, 2013 at 15:03
  • @Robusto: It's not perfect though. Firstly, because you can steep in cold water, and secondly because steeping always involves liquid - so it couldn't be used for the "continued cooking" of, say, scrambled eggs after you turn the heat off. My professional chef friend says it's a recognised "cooking phase" in various culinary contexts, but even he doesn't know a single word for it. Commented Jan 13, 2013 at 17:06

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