Home > Info Guides > Basic Cooking Measurements & Kitchen Conversion Chart

Basic Cooking Measurements & Kitchen Conversion Chart

Cooking measurements, cooking equivalents, and cooking conversions can be really confusing at times, but they don’t have to be!

I’m explaining all the basics when it comes to measuring and converting in the kitchen, including how to convert metric to standard, common cooking measurements and equivalents, and more.

Cooking Measurements & Cooking Conversions

Cooking measurements and cooking conversions are a point of confusion for many people. Whether you’re a beginner at cooking or a seasoned home chef, sometimes measurements just don’t seem to make sense!

You’ve got tablespoons and cups, and then there’s fluid ounces. And on top of that, there’s recipes that use metric cooking measurements but you only understand U.S. standard measurements…it’s a lot. Cooking measurements and equivalents should be one of the first steps in learning how to cook, but it’s easy to get by still not quite understanding it all.

I’m going to explain everything you need to know about basic cooking measurements, converting metric to imperial/standard in the kitchen, understanding kitchen measurement equivalents, AND give you a free printable kitchen conversion chart to help you figure it all out. Cooking should be fun and easy, not some kind of math test.

So if cooking conversions and measurements cause you pain on a regular basis, this post is for you! I’m here to help so that you can follow recipes without hassle and feel CONFIDENT in the kitchen.

Kitchen Measurement Tools

Most of your cooking measurements can be done with these basic kitchen measurement tools.

Remember that liquid ingredients and dry ingredients should always be measured with the proper tools (i.e. measure liquids in a liquid measuring cup, measure dry ingredients in dry measuring cups).

A kitchen scale can be used when ingredients need to be weighed instead of measured by cups, etc. This is ideal for more exact recipes, or when using recipes that measure by weight (in grams, for example).

Cooking Measurements Abbreviations

When you’re following a recipe, it’s pretty important to understand those cooking abbreviations. Many recipes (including mine) will use shorthand when writing out recipes, and if you don’t know what they mean, you could end up making a few mistakes.

Kitchen Measurement Abbreviations (Standard and Metric)

fl. ozfluid ounce

Measuring Liquid Ingredients vs. Dry Ingredients

Dry ingredients and liquid ingredients should be treated differently when measuring. Measuring cups and spoon sets are generally intended for dry ingredients, while liquid measuring cups are (obviously) intended for liquid ingredients. Using the right measuring tools will ensure exact measurements.

  • When measuring dry ingredients, generally you should fill the cup to the brim, and then scrape the excess off the top to get the most accurate amount (scoop and level method). This cannot be done with a liquid measuring cup, which is just one reason why it should not be used.
  • While you will get more exact liquid measurements with the liquid measuring cup, when a recipe calls for small amounts of liquid, sometimes you will need to use measuring spoons instead.
  • These tips are most important when making recipes that truly require exact measurements.

Ounces vs Fluid Ounces

Using ounces vs fluid ounces comes back to the liquid ingredients vs dry ingredients. Ounces measure weight, while fluid ounces measures volume. Dry ingredients can be measured in ounces (by weight), while liquid ingredients are measured in fluid ounces (by volume). So if a recipe calls for 8 ounces of flour, that doesn’t mean you need 1 cup.

Rest assured, most U.S. recipes (using standard/imperial system) will list dry ingredients by cups/tablespoons/etc rather than by ounces. Just keep this in mind when measuring your ingredients!

Basic Kitchen Conversions & Equivalents

Understanding basic cooking measurements and cooking conversions is important knowledge to have in the kitchen. When you’re following a recipe, you need to know what it all means. And sometimes you just can’t find that darn tablespoon to measure out your ingredients, so you have to wing it. But if you know that 1 tablespoon also equals 3 teaspoons, then you can measure away without worry!

Just follow these kitchen conversion charts, and soon enough you’ll memorize them just like those multiplication charts from school. Check our How to Cut Recipes in Half post if you need help with that too.

Dry Measurements Conversion Chart

3 tsp1 tbsp1/16 c
6 tsp2 tbsp1/8 c
12 tsp4 tbsp1/4 c
24 tsp8 tbsp1/2 c
36 tsp12 tbsp3/4 c
48 tsp16 tbsp1 c

Liquid Measurements Conversion Chart

Fluid OuncesCupsPintsQuartsGallons
8 fl. oz1 c1/2 pt1/4 qt1/16 gal
16 fl. oz2 c1 pt1/2 qt1/8 gal
32 fl. oz4 c2 pt1 qt1/4 gal
64 fl. oz8 c4 pt2 qt1/2 gal
128 fl. oz16 c8 pt4 qt1 gal

Butter Measurements Chart

1/2 stick1/4 c4 tbsp2 oz57.5 g
1 stick1/2 c8 tbsp4 oz115 g
2 sticks1 c16 tbsp8 oz230 g

Metric Cooking Measurement vs Standard/Imperial Cooking Measurements

Here in the U.S., we use the Imperial, or “Standard”, measurement system. So our recipes are measured in teaspoons, tablespoons, cups, pounds, etc. We’re in a bit of a bubble on that though, because the rest of the world (for the most part) uses the metric system. Recipes are generally measured in grams and milliliters.

So what happens when you want to use a recipe that uses metric cooking measurements, but you only know (and only have tools for) imperial cooking measurements? Well that’s where cooking conversions charts come in handy!

Whether you’re trying to measure for volume or weight, or need to convert oven temperatures from Celsius to Fahrenheit (or vice versa), these charts will help you get it right.

Metric to US Cooking Conversions

Use these charts to quickly convert metric measurements to standard/imperial measurements (including oven temperatures!).

Oven Temperatures Conversion

(Degrees) Celsius(Degrees) Fahrenheit
120° C250° F
160° C320° F
180° C350° F
205° C400° F
220° C425° F

Liquid Measurements (Volume)

1 mL1/5 tsp
5 mL1 tsp
15 mL1 tbsp
240 mL1 c (8 fl. oz)
1 liter34 fl. oz

Dry Measurements (Weight)

1 g.035 oz
100 g3.5 oz
500 g17.7 oz (1.1 lb)
1 kg35 oz

US to Metric Cooking Conversions

1/5 tsp1 ml
1 tsp5 ml
1 tbsp15 ml
1 fl. oz30 ml
1 c237 ml
1 pt473 ml
1 qt.95 l
1 gal3.8 l
1 oz28 g
1 lb454 g

What Does 1 Cup Equal?

I think it’s helpful to know what 1 cup equals, because even when you’re short on kitchen measuring tools, most people will have a 1 cup measurement. If you have that, you can go far! Plus it can be useful for making cooking conversions when trying to halve or scale recipes. Just remember that 1 cup equals these various measurements….which means that everything in this chart is equivalent!

  • 1 cup = 8 fluid ounces
  • 1 cup = 16 tablespoons
  • 1 cup = 48 teaspoons
  • 1 cup = ½ pint
  • 1 cup = ¼ quart
  • 1 cup = 1/16 gallon
  • 1 cup = 240 ml

Note: Keep in mind the difference between dry and liquid ingredients. In the U.S., recipes often use “cups” for both liquid and dry ingredients. But it is implied that 1 cup of a liquid will be measured with a liquid measuring cup, while 1 cup of a dry ingredients will be measured with a dry measuring cup.

Baking Pan Conversions

Sometimes you come across an awesome cake recipe that’s made for a specific type of baking pan…but you don’t have that type or size, or you just prefer to make a different style of cake. No worries! By figuring out how much cake batter goes into each cake pan, you can change up the recipe to fit in another type of baking pan. The cups refer to how much batter fits into the pan.

  • 9-inch round cake pan = 12 cups
  • 10-inch tube pan =16 cups
  • 10-inch bundt pan = 12 cups
  • 9-inch springform pan = 10 cups
  • 9 x 5 inch loaf pan = 8 cups
  • 9-inch square pan = 8 cups

Common Baking Measurements (Conversions)

Remember earlier when I told you about the difference between ounces and fluid ounces? Here are some numbers to back up the importance of that tip. 8 fluid ounces of liquid will often equal 1 cup, but 8 ounces (weight) of a dry ingredient will rarely equal 1 cup.

Baking in Ounces

1 c. all-purpose flour4.5 oz
1 c. granulated sugar7.1 oz
1 c. unsifted powdered sugar4.4 oz
1 c. packed brown sugar7.75 oz
1 c. rolled oats3 oz
1 c. vegetable oil7.7 oz
1 c. milk8 oz.
1 c. heavy cream8.4 oz
1 c. butter8 oz.
1 large egg (white + yolk)1.7 oz

Baking in Grams

1 c. all-purpose flour127 g
1 c. granulated sugar200 g
1 c. unsifted powdered sugar125 g
1 c. packed brown sugar220 g
1 c. rolled oats85 g
1 c. vegetable oil218 g
1 c. milk227 g
1 c. heavy cream238 g
1 c. butter227 g
1 large egg (white + yolk)48 g

I hope these basic cooking measurements and cooking conversions help clear things up a bit! I know cooking and baking measurements have caused me a lot of confusion in the past, and I want cooking and following recipes to be EASY. I want it to make sense so that you guys can enjoy cooking and feel confident in the kitchen.

I’m Jennifer Schlette, a Registered Dietitian and Integrative Nutrition Health Coach. I love cooking, reading, and my kids! Here you’ll find the healthiest recipes & substitutions for your cooking. Enjoy, and be well, friends!

Share on:

Leave a Comment