The Right Way to Measure Dry and Wet Ingredients

Recipes can call for a multitude of ingredients, and with all the different measurements it can be a puzzle to solve just what you need. There are fluid ounces, weight ounces, imperial and metric systems, and liquid and dry measures. When a recipe relies on precise measurements, how you measure these ingredients really matters.

First, make sure you’re using the correct measuring cup for an ingredient. Measuring flour with a liquid measuring cup will mess up your recipe. The same goes for measuring liquid with a dry measuring cup. A dry and liquid ingredient will have differing properties, changing how they should be measured. The types of cups you’re using also matters! Sadly, decorative ceramic cups may be designed for looks instead of accuracy. Basic metal cups usually provide the best results.

Common Units of Volume

  • Teaspoons: 3 teaspoons equal 1 tablespoon
  • Tablespoons: 1 tablespoon equals 3 teaspoons
  • Cups: 1 cup equals 8 fluid ounces
  • Pints: There are 2 cups in 1 pint
  • Quarts: There are 4 cups in 1 quart
  • Gallons: There are 4 quarts in a gallon
  • Fluid ounces: Fluid ounces are not the same as weight ounces. 1 cup of water is 8 fluid ounces but weighs 8.3 ounces
  • Liters: This is metric measurement, equal to 33.8 ounces
  • Milliliters: There are 1,000 ml in a liter

Essentials for Measuring

  • Liquid measuring cups, which are made of clear glass or plastic and have a spout so you can pour from them.
  • Dry measuring cups, which are made of metal or plastic. A basic set includes 1 cup, 1/2 cup, 1/3 cup, and 1/4 cup.
  • Measuring spoons, which are used for amounts of dry and liquid ingredients. The largest measure in the set is a tablespoon. The smallest is usually 1/4 teaspoon, though some sets include 1/8 teaspoon. To measure 3/4 teaspoon, just measure 1/2 teaspoon and 1/4 teaspoon of the ingredient.

Tips on Measuring Dry Ingredients

How you measure ingredients such as flour, can make the difference between a dense and gluey banana bread versus a light and cakey banana bread. The best method for measuring is the fluff-and-scoop method:

  1. Lightly fluff the flour in its container.
  2. Scoop or spoon the flour into the measuring cup.
  3. Level it off with a flat edge, such as the back of a table knife. Do not pack the flour or tap the cup.

If you ever find yourself looking for the most accurate method, try a kitchen scale! Weight will give you better results as it’s an absolute measurement. It’ll eliminate any guesswork.

Source: Simply Recipes

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