Separable Phrasal Verbs in English

Here’s a list of 15 separable phrasal verbs with example sentences:

Phrasal Verb


Example Sentence
call (something) off


It started to rain 10 minutes before the soccer game, so they called it off.
cheer (someone) up

make a sad person feel happy

My daughter was sad about missing the concert, but I bought her a CD to help cheer her up.
chop (something) up

cut something (usually food) into small pieces

The recipe says to take three onions and chop them up.
do (something) over

repeat a task

You didn’t do this assignment correctly. You’ll need to do it over.
figure (something) out

understand, find a solution

Could you help me with this math problem? I can’t figure it out.
give (something) out


Please print 100 copies of this report and give them out to all the employees.
let (someone) down

disappoint another person

He really let me down when he forgot my birthday.
pick (someone) up

get a person in your car and take him/her to another place

The tour company will pick you up at the airport and take you to your hotel.
put (something) away

put something in the correct place

After you’re done reading those magazines, please put them away.
put (something) off

delay, postpone, procrastinate

I know I should work on this project, but it’s difficult so I keep putting it off.
spell (something) out

describe carefully and clearly in detail

It’s my first day at this new job, so you’ll need to spell everything out for me.
throw (something) away

put something in the garbage

I threw the headphones away because they were broken.
try (something) on

wear a piece of clothing temporarily to see if it’s the correct size

I really like this dress. Can I try it on?
turn (someone/something) down

reject or refuse

She got a job offer from a big company, but she turned it down to pursue a career in music.
write (something) down

write something on paper

Could you tell me your e-mail address again? I didn’t write it down.

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