U.S. Standard to Metric Cooking Conversions
The Metric Question
For years I have enjoyed watching foreign cooking shows. From Masterchef Australia to other wonderful cooking shows, anything non-US can be a bit hard to follow when you want to make that amazing recipe you just saw. What the heck is a milliliter? A gram? Anyone?
To cut through the confusion - and perhaps botched cooking efforts - it is important to be able to convert properly. Here will be listed the usual conversions so that you never need to worry about it again. Furthermore, I will list a recipe in both measures so you can see how simple it is to convert Metric to US - or even the other way around!
What is Metric and Why is it Important to Convert Properly?
Long story short, the metric system is a more exact mathematical way of measuring things. The prefixes (centi- kilo- milli- etc) stand for 100, 1000, 10000, etc and make it a lot easier to tell how much or how little you are putting into something. Unit conversion within the metric system is easier because you have to shift a decimal rather than doing math as you would in the US Standard - ie 12 inches to a foot, then 3 feet in a yard, so how many inches is in 7 yards?
Honestly long story short: Math is hard. Metric is easy.
Its important to know how to convert properly because when you don't, everything can go wrong. This was most plainly shown in the unfortunate incident with the Mars Orbiter being lost because of bad conversions - costing 125 million. Of course, in cooking you would probably cost a dollar or two, but its still good to get it right the first time.
The Conversion: Temperature
The Conversion: Fluid
1 Tablespoon / 1/2 Ounce
1 fluid ounce / 1/8 cup
1/4 cup / 2 fluid ounces
1/2 cup / 4 fluid ounces
3/4 cup / 6 fluid ounces
1 cup / 8 fluid ounces / half a pint
1 1/2 cups / 12 fluid ounces
2 cups / 1 pint / 16 fluid ounces
3 cups / 1 1/2 pints
4 cups / 2 pints / 1 quart
4 quarts / 1 gallon
The Conversion: Weight
4 ounces / 1/4 pound
8 ounces / 1/2 pound
12 ounces / 3/4 pound
1 pound / 16 ounces
The Sugar Cookie
To test if you can convert properly I'm going to have a metric recipe up, and then the US standard one follow it. Good luck, and enjoy the sugar cookie!
|Serving size: 15g|
|Calories from Fat||27|
|% Daily Value *|
|Fat 3 g||5%|
|Saturated fat 1 g||5%|
|Carbohydrates 10 g||3%|
|Sugar 6 g|
|Cholesterol 8 mg||3%|
|Sodium 54 mg||2%|
|* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.|
- 5mL Baking Soda
- [2 3/4 Cup] Flour, I didn't give cup to weight measurements, sorry, but you should weigh flour!
- 2.5mL Baking Powder
- 240mL Butter, Softened
- 360mL Sugar
- 1 Egg
- 5mL Vanilla
- Preheat oven to 190c. Mix together the baking powder, baking soda, and flour in a bowl for later.
- Cream your butter and sugar together (mush them until creamy). Mix in the egg and vanilla before slowly adding in the dry ingredient bowl you mixed. Roll into small balls and place on wax paper or ungreased cookie sheets and slide them into the oven.
- Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown! The hard part: let stand for a few minutes before moving to the wire racks to cool. Enjoy!
Did you make a sugar cookie? For those unadventurous ones, here are the answers even if you didn't try to make a cookie.
Bake at 350.
1 Teaspoon of vanilla and baking soda
1/2 Teaspoon baking powder
1 Cup of butter, 1 1/2 Cups of sugar, 2 3/4 Cups of flour
Success? I hope so!
I hope you were able to see how easy it is to convert. The first few times it may take a pen and paper to write it all down, but sooner or later you will be able to convert without having to look at any charts at all!
I hope this is able to open up a new door of culinary possibilities for you. If you know anyone who is interested in foreign cooking, you might want to show them this page so they can get into it more and have some fun!