How To Measure Ingredients In Baking

How To Measure Ingredients For Baking: Guide

I love baking. Baking is one of my passion. A lot of people likes to bake but afraid to try because they find baking intimidating due to the hard work that it requires - from the accurate measurement of ingredients to correctly following of procedures.

This guide on how to measure ingredients for baking are for those who find baking intimidating. Intimidating in the sense that some baking recipes requires very accurate measurement of ingredients and the ability to accurately follow procedures in a recipe. You cannot just guess and invent the amount of ingredients to be used in baking because the baked goods will either turn out hard, flat or inedible.

This is the reason why some people prefer cooking over baking because with cooking you don't need to accurately measure ingredients and follow procedures to the letter. You can even cook a recipe by adding more or less ingredients from a recipe and adjust the ingredients according to your taste.

In baking, you cannot just add more or less ingredients in a recipe. You have to accurately measure the ingredients and follow the procedures not unless you are a very experienced pastry chef or baker.

An important procedure that should not be ignored in baking is the accurate or exact measurement of ingredients. Every person who loves to bake or would like to learn how to bake must have the right utensils to be able to measure ingredients accurately.

Photos of Utensils for measuring ingredients in baking

Nested metal measuring cups in 1/4 cup, 1/3 cup, 1/2 cup and 1 cup gradation.
Nested metal measuring cups in 1/4 cup, 1/3 cup, 1/2 cup and 1 cup gradation.
Plastic graduated measuring cup with cup measurement gradation and the its equivalent in fluid ounces gradation
Plastic graduated measuring cup with cup measurement gradation and the its equivalent in fluid ounces gradation
Plastic graduated measuring cup  with cup measurement gradation and its equivalent in milliliter gradation.
Plastic graduated measuring cup with cup measurement gradation and its equivalent in milliliter gradation.
Measuring spoons in 1/8 teaspoon, 1/4 teaspoon, 1/2 teaspoon, 1 teaspoon, 5 teaspoon, 1 tablespoon, 1 1/4 tablespoon and 2 tablespoon gradation
Measuring spoons in 1/8 teaspoon, 1/4 teaspoon, 1/2 teaspoon, 1 teaspoon, 5 teaspoon, 1 tablespoon, 1 1/4 tablespoon and 2 tablespoon gradation
A spring-type scale in 20 grams gradation with a capacity of 3 kilograms.
A spring-type scale in 20 grams gradation with a capacity of 3 kilograms.
solid and liquid baking ingredients
solid and liquid baking ingredients

Kinds of Utensils To Invest For Measuring Ingredients In Baking

Two types of measuring cups:

  1. Graduated measuring cups - can be either plastic or glass. This type is ideal for measuring liquid ingredients. The graduated lines are either etched or printed on both side of the cup showing the measurement in milliliters and fluid ounces gradation. It has a spout to avoid spills. Graduated measuring cups comes in different sizes with the smallest in one cup size and the biggest in one gallon size. For household use, the ideal size is the one in two cup gradation.
  2. Nested measuring cups - are made of either metal or plastic material and comes as a set in the following measures: 1/4 cup, 1/3 cup, 1/2 cup and 1 cup. The nested measuring cups are ideally used in measuring dry or solid ingredients.

Measuring Spoons are either made in metal or plastic material. It is used to measure both solid and liquid ingredients in small quantity. It come as a basic of i/4 teaspoon, 1/2 teaspoon, 1 teaspoon and 1 tablespoon. My measuring spoons are made of both plastic and metal materials and comes in set of 1/8 teaspoon or 0.625 ml, 1/4 teaspoon 0r 1.25 ml, 1/2 teaspoon or 2.5 ml, 1 teaspoon or 5 ml, 2 teaspoon or 10 ml, 1 tablespoon or 15 ml, 1 1/2 tablespoon or 22.5 ml and 2 tablespoon or 30 ml. measurements.

Two Types of Weighing Scale:

  1. Digital scale - this type of scale is rather expensive but is the most accurate.
  2. Spring-type scale - the least expensive and comes in 20 grams gradation with a capacity of up to 3 kilograms for small quantities and the 100 grams gradation with a capacity of up to 10 kilograms for large quantities. The spring-type scale in 20 grams gradation with a capacity of up to 3 kilograms is ideal in measuring ingredients for baking at home.

Basic Conversion Table

From
To
Equivalent
1/8 teaspoon
=
0.625 ml
1/4 teaspoon
=
1.25 ml
1/2 teaspoon
=
2.5 ml
1 teaspoon
=
5 ml
2 teaspoon
=
10 ml
1 tablespoon
=
15 ml
1 1/2 tablespoon
=
22.5 ml
2 tablespoon
=
30 ml
1/4 cup
=
60 ml or 2 oz
1/3 cup
=
80 ml or 22 oz
1/2 cup
=
125 ml or 44 oz
1 cup
=
250 ml or 88 oz
1 cup
=
16 tablespoons
2 cups
=
1 pint
4 cups
=
2 pints
16 cups
=
8 pints
8 pints
=
4 quarts
4 quarts
=
1 gallon

Please note some slight deference in the table above from the US metric conversion table or from the Common Measurement and Equivalents listed in the link below. It is because in my country we usually use 125 ml equivalent of 1/4 teaspoon because it is much easier to find and measure 125 ml than 123 ml and we round off some of the equivalents for much easier measurement of ingredients.

The very slight deference will not be noticeable in the finished product. But as a rule of thumb, to obtain consistent result in my baked goods, I used a standard form of measurement for all my recipes so that I get the same results each time I bake the recipe. To make the standard measurement of a recipe, instead of measuring the ingredients in cups, I measure the ingredients in grams, so I have the same accurate measurement of the ingredients and the same results all the time.

By being familiar with conversions, it will be easier for you to measure ingredients. For example, If a recipe calls for 3 teaspoons or 15 ml of iodized salt and you need to double the recipe, you will not have to measure the iodized salt six times using a teaspoon. You can directly measure 2 tablespoons of iodized salt because 16 teaspoons or 30 ml of iodized salt is equivalent to 2 tablespoons of iodized salt.

Familiarizing yourself with the conversion will save you a lot of time and effort and will make measurement of ingredients a lot simpler and easier.

How to accurately measure brown sugar

pack the brown sugar with the back of a spoon
pack the brown sugar with the back of a spoon | Source
the brown sugar must hold its shape when the measuring cup is inverted and the sugar is slid into a flat surface.
the brown sugar must hold its shape when the measuring cup is inverted and the sugar is slid into a flat surface.

Tips On How To Measure Ingredients Accurately

As a rule of thumb, always use the nested measuring cups when measuring dry or solid ingredients and use the granulated measuring cups when measuring the liquid ingredients. Remember that they are not inter-changeable.

When using the nested measuring spoons and measuring cups always remember to:

  • Fill the utensil to the brim and level off the dry ingredients with the back of a knife or with a spatula.
  • never dip the measuring cup into the container when measuring flour. Always spoon the flour into the measuring cup up to the brim and level off the excess.
  • to get the accurate measurement of brown sugar, always remember to pack it with the back of a spoon, then invert the measuring cup into a flat surface and let the sugar slide out. You'll know you've measured correctly if the sugar hold its shape and don't crumble or break down.
  • make sure to fill up to the edge of the spoon or cup when measuring liquid ingredients.

When using the graduated measuring cup always remember to:

  • put the measuring cup on a flat surface or near the edge of the table
  • check the measurement at eye level and looking down from a standing position.

When using a weighing scale always remember to:

  • set the weighing scale at zero before measuring the ingredients.
  • when using a spring-type scale always put the empty container first on the weighing scale and adjust the dial to zero before putting in your ingredients to be measured.
  • when using a digital scale, put the empty container on the scale, press "TARE" to remove the weight of the container before putting in the ingredients to be measured.

Never forget that the key to a hassle-free baking is by knowing the basics of measuring ingredients. Once you are familiar with the basics, you will find out that baking is just a breeze.

Measuring Cup and Spoon Set for Measuring Dry or Solid and Liquid Ingredients

Graduated Glass Measuring Cup

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Comments 1 comment

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ChristyWrites 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

I actually find baking easier than cooking. I suppose I go against the norm! You give useful tips here, thank-you. I know this hub will help anyone who is intimidated in the kitchen.

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