This Chart Shows You How to Convert Cooking Measurements
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Who knew cooking would involve so much math? Don't worry—this chart makes it easy to tackle cooking measurement conversions without an advanced degree.
One of the first classes I took in culinary school was a math class. I wasn’t too thrilled about it at first, but I realized how important it was as the semester went along. That information was helpful for adapting recipes for different pan sizes, and it was so much easier to make a recipe with metric measurements after I could convert them to U.S. standard measurements.
When it came down to it, the class was really about memorizing a few cooking measurement conversions and applying them to the recipes as needed. You don’t need to go to school to do this. Use these handy charts instead!
Weight and Measure Equivalents
Teaspoon and Tablespoon Measures
Here’s the simple way to remember tablespoon and teaspoon measures: There are 3 teaspoons in 1 tablespoon, 1 tablespoon measures 1/2 fluid ounce, and 16 tablespoons make up a cup. To skip the math, use the chart below.
|Dash or pinch||=||less than 1/8 teaspoon|
|1 1/2 teaspoons||=||1/2 tablespoon|
|3 teaspoons||=||1 tablespoon; 1/2 fluid ounce|
|4 1/2 teaspoons||=||1 1/2 tablepsoons|
|2 tablespoons||=||1/8 cup; 1 fluid ounce|
|4 tablespoons||=||1/4 cup; 2 fluid ounces|
|8 tablespoons||=||1/2 cup; 4 fluid ounces|
|12 tablespoons||=||3/4 cup; 6 fluid ounces|
|16 tablespoons||=||1 cup; 8 fluid ounces; 1/2 pint|
For scaling recipes, remember that 16 tablespoons make up 1 cup, 1 cup measures 8 fluid ounces, and there are four cups in a quart. For a mathless experience, here’s the full chart.
|1/8 cup||=||2 tablespoons; 1 fluid ounce|
|1/4 cup||=||4 tablespoons; 2 fluid ounces|
|1/3 cup||=||5 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon|
|1/2 cup||=||8 tablespoons; 4 fluid ounces|
|2/3 cup||=||10 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons|
|3/4 cup||=||12 tablespoons; 6 fluid ounces|
|7/8 cup||=||3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons|
|1 cup||=||16 tablespoons; 8 fluid ounces; 1/2 pint|
|2 cups||=||1 pint; 16 fluid ounces|
|4 cups||=||2 pints; 1 quart; 32 fluid ounces|
Pints, Quarts, Gallons and Pounds
The best way to remember conversions with pints is to remember the rhyme, “A pint’s a pound the world around.”
How much does a pound weigh? It’s 16 ounces, and if you remember that a cup weighs 8 ounces, that makes 1 pint equal to 2 cups.
|1/2 pint||=||1 cup; 8 fluid ounces|
|1 pint||=||2 cups; 16 fluid ounces|
|1 quart||=||4 cups; 32 fluid ounces|
|1 gallon||=||4 quarts; 16 cups|
|1/4 pound||=||4 ounces|
|1/2 pound||=||8 ounces|
|3/4 pound||=||12 ounces|
|1 pound||=||16 ounces|
What do all of the conversions above have in common? They’re based on the U.S. Imperial (or “Standard”) measurement system. But what if you’re trying to make an international recipe? It will use grams, milliliters and degrees Celsius instead of ounces, cups and degrees Fahrenheit. Here’s how to make those conversions.
Metric Volume Conversions
If you can remember that 1 teaspoon is 5 milliliters, 1 tablespoon is 15 milliliters and 1 cup is approximately 250 milliliters, it’s easy to do the conversion math. Or, skip the math and use the chart.
|1 milliliter||=||1/5 teaspoon|
|5 milliliters||=||1 teaspoon|
|15 milliliters||=||1 tablespoon|
|60 milliliters||=||1/4 cup; 2 fluid ounces|
|80 milliliters||=||1/3 cup|
|125 milliliters||=||1/2 cup; 4 fluid ounces|
|160 milliliters||=||2/3 cup|
|180 milliliters||=||3/4 cup; 6 fluid ounces|
|250 milliliters||=||1 cup; 8 fluid ounces|
|375 milliliters||=||1-1/2 cups; 12 fluid ounces|
|500 milliliters||=||2 cups; 16 fluid ounces; 1 pint|
|700 milliliters||=||3 cups|
|950 milliliters||=||4 cups; 32 fluid ounces; 1 quart|
|1 liter||=||33.8 fluid ounces|
|3.8 liters||=||4 quarts; 1 gallon|
Metric Weight Conversions
Every 28 grams makes an ounce, and just over 450 grams makes a pound. Keep in mind that this refers to weight, not fluid ounces (which are a measurement of volume).
- 1 gram = .035 ounces
- 100 grams = 3.5 ounces
- 500 grams = 17.6 ounces; 1.1 pounds
- 1 kilogram = 35 ounces; 2.2 pounds
Cooking and Oven Temperature Conversions
Looking to convert degrees Celsius to degrees Fahrenheit? Multiply Celsius number by 1.8 and add 32. Or, use this chart.
Measuring Liquid vs. Dry Ingredients
We’re all about multitaskers when it comes to essential kitchen tools. But, for measuring ingredients, you’ll want to have two sets of measuring tools: one for measuring liquids and another for dry ingredients. Yes, there really is a different between liquid and dry measurements!
Liquid Measuring Tools
Liquid measuring cups are ideal for measuring liquid ingredients like milk, water, oil, honey, molasses and corn syrup. They’re made from clear glass or plastic, and they usually have a handle and a pouring spout. You’ll find them in 1-cup, 2-cup, 4-cup or 8-cup sizes. It’s helpful to have several sizes, like this 3-piece set.
To measure liquid ingredients, place the cup on a flat service. If you’re working with a sticky ingredient like honey, spray the cup with cooking spray before adding the ingredient. Then, pour the ingredient as you view the measurement at eye level. Looking at the cup from above can cause inaccurate measurement (unless your measuring cup is designed for viewing above). When you’re finished, use a rubber spatula to remove the contents from the cup.
Dry Measuring Tools
For measuring dry ingredients or ingredients that mound, like brown sugar, flour, nuts, chocolate chips, sour cream and shortening, you’ll want a set of measuring cups. Made from metal or plastic, these cups have a straight, even rim that makes it easy to level off ingredients with the back of a knife. You’ll want a set with 1/4 cup, 1/3 cup, 1/2 cup and 1 cup. If the set has extra measurements (like 1/8 cup, 2/3 cup or 3/4 cup), consider it a bonus.
To measure dry ingredients, scoop or spoon the ingredient into the cup. Allow the ingredient to mound a little, positioning the cup over the canister if needed. Then, level the top by sweeping a straight-edged spatula or back of a knife across the rim of the cup.
For brown sugar, make sure you pay attention to the recipe. If it calls for a “packed” cup, press the brown sugar into the cup with the back of the spoon before leveling the top.
Measuring Tools for Small Quantities
Finally, to round out your measuring tools, pick up a set of measuring spoons. Measuring spoons have straight, even rims (just like measuring cups) but they can be used to measure both liquid and dry ingredients. Most sets come with 1/4 teaspoon, 1/2 teaspoon, 1 teaspoon, and 1 tablespoon spoons. You may find one that also contains 1/8 teaspoon, 3/4 teaspoon or 1/2 tablespoon measurements.
To measure dry ingredients with measuring spoons, allow the ingredient to mound before leveling out the top. For liquid ingredients, pour just enough liquid to reach the rim of the spoon. A quick coating of cooking spray will help sticky ingredients like honey from sticking to the spoon.