I always thought the verb "want " requires "to", whether it's a verb or an adjective. But I heard a lot of people just saying the adjective without " to be." I wonder whether this is grammatical or it's just dropped in casual settings.


I want (would like) the beef to be medium. I want (would like) the beef medium.

  • When Al Capone gets really upset with someone, he shouts I want him dead! If it suits you to imagine a "deleted" to be there, you can. But native speakers wouldn't really think of it like that, any more than they would think of I want him off my back! as "short for" I want him to be off my back (which is syntactically valid, but very unlikely from a native speaker). Commented Aug 22, 2017 at 12:51

1 Answer 1


"I want the beef medium" is used informally since the words "to be" can be dropped without changing the meaning. This is because the "to be" is implied.

Edit: See @FumbleFingers' comment about this, it explains it well.

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