1. the seed contained within the husk of a nut or the stone of a fruit.
The monkey broke into the fruit with its teeth and pulled out the kernel.
2. a grain of wheat, corn, or the like.
The chickens pecked at the hard kernels of corn scattered on the ground.
3. the most central part of something; core; nucleus.
That all humans deserve forgiveness was the kernel of the minister’s sermon for that day.
I understand the kernel of your argument, but your essay needs greater development.
4. a tiny but significant element of something.
I noted a kernel of disgust in his voice when he told us what he’d found out.
We had to admit there was a kernel of truth in what she said.