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I found a recipe that's using one or more measurements that I don't recognize. How can I convert it to a unit that I use locally?


Alternative question template: (to improve searchability):
How can I convert an Imperial weight or volume measurement (tsp, tbsp, cups, ounces, pints, quarts, gallons, pounds) to an equivalent Metric measurement (g, kg, mL, L)?

  • The answers to this question are already quite difficult to read through, and there are other resources better suited to the problem (some of them are linked in the accepted answer). If it had been asked today, it would have been deleted. I protected it now since we certainly don't need any more charts, and will leave it to the community if they also want to close it. – rumtscho Oct 10 '17 at 14:39
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Common U.S. Volume Measurements:

  • 1 tbsp = 3 tsp
  • 1 fl oz = 2 tbsp
  • 1 cup = 8 oz
  • 1 pint = 2 cups
  • 1 quart = 4 cups
  • 1 gallon = 4 quarts

Common U.S. to Metric Conversions:

  • 1 oz ~ 30 mL
  • 1 cup ~ 237 mL
  • 1 quart ~ 1 L
  • 1 oz = 28.4 g
  • 1 lbs = 0.45 kg

Common Metric to U.S. Conversions:

  • 1 kg = 2.2 lbs

Online Converters:

  • Google: Type a conversion such as "1 tbsp in mL" and it will automatically convert it for you. This is generally the fastest option.

  • Wolfram Alpha: Same idea, gives you a little more information and lets you disambiguate between similar measurements (e.g. US tablespoons vs. UK tablespoons).

  • Convert-Me - Cooking Ingredients: Converts to every well-known measurement at the same time. Can convert (approximate) volume to weight and vice versa, for many ingredients.

  • Food.com Measurement Converter: Same thing, a little easier to use, but slower.

iPhone/iPad:

Android:

Printable Conversion Charts

(Note: Use your browser's "print selection" feature to print just the conversion chart)

  • 2
    In the UK a cup is 10 fluid ounces, rather than 8, i.e. it is half a pint (20 fluid ounces in the UK). Some older UK cookbooks use the measurement and a lot of cups that one can buy are also this size, so its a useful one. It also means that 1 quart = 4 cups on both systems. – Francis Davey Jul 29 '12 at 19:23
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Found this to be very helpful:

enter image description here

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    You might find it helpful, but it's not helpful to anyone else unless you state which of the various measurement systems calling themselves Imperial it covers. – Peter Taylor Jun 17 '14 at 15:43
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If you are serious about cooking, buy some of the measuring cups with multiple different scales, similar to this one:

measuring cup

Not only you will not have to convert the units, because many of the cups have both US and metric scales, but you avoid weighting flour, sugar etc. Real time saver.

  • 4
    I cannot agree here. Weighing sugar and flour is far faster and more accurate than volumetric measurement. – SAJ14SAJ Mar 12 '14 at 0:09
  • The accuracy of weight is undisputable, the speed is up for discussion. But my idea here was, looking at the talbes above, this can provide you with a nice conversion table without the need to have some extra paper pinned on fridge or something. – Petr Mar 12 '14 at 0:33
  • Nice idea, although in my experience, this does not work well. It's very hard to match the line (harder than working with cups). I usually use a cup, weigh it and use that for future reference. – Mien Mar 12 '14 at 10:36
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From wikipedia:

  • teaspoon (tsp): 1/6 ounce
  • tablespoon (tbsp): 3 tsp, 1/2 oz
  • fluid ounce (fl oz): 2 Tbsp, 1 oz
  • jigger (jig): 3 tbsp, 1.5 oz
  • cup (c): 16 tbsp, 8 oz
  • pint (pt): 2 c, 16 oz ("A pint's a pound the world around" - both have 16 ounces.)
  • quart (qt): 2 pt, 32 oz
  • gallon (gal): 4 qt, 128 oz
  • 2
    Wait what? I always thought "a pint's a pound..." was referring to H20. – Preston Dec 30 '13 at 3:55
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    I just spent way too much time and brainpower reading about the differences between US and UK volume measurements. I hate my life. We really do need to step up our metric system game. This is ridiculous. – Preston Dec 30 '13 at 3:56
  • These only work for American measurements. British tablespoons, cups, pints and quarts are not the same as the US. (and I suspect gallons, too) – Joe Nov 21 '16 at 1:54
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So, this is my first answer on stackexchange and I'm new here. Hello to the community :D The answers above are very good, but I want to add one more app where the cooking units can be converted very quickly. For example for cups, quarts or liter:

For more conversions you can see the latest conversions of the volumes category directly on the website.

Disclaimer: I'm a programmer and developer, and work on my project CalculatePlus in my spare time. This free tool allows you to do quick online calculations and conversions.

  • Hello, and welcome to Stack Exchange. You should be very careful, and very open, when you promote your own products and websites. – Daniel Griscom Nov 19 '16 at 19:12
  • See cooking.stackexchange.com/help/promotion for guidance on self-promotion. – Cascabel Nov 21 '16 at 0:03
  • Thank you for the suggestions guys! I'm new here, and I will learn... :) – henryhollow Nov 21 '16 at 10:05
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If you're trying to convert to metric, and you're getting your recipes from the web, you can also use a browser plugin I wrote which I believe is more convenient than the other suggested solutions, since it displays the conversion result directly in the recipe when you press a button: enter image description here Everything in […] was added by this plugin. It also converts from volume to weight for many common ingredients (e.g. "10 tablespoons sugar" is converted to "125g").

The plugin is available for Firefox and for Chrome (free software with no ads. I wrote it as a birthday gift :-).

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