How To Measure Your Ingredients For Baking

These basic steps will help you bake consistently good treats.

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Unlike cooking, once you put your mixture into the oven, you won't be able to change its taste and texture. That might scare a few people from baking but actually, it's an easy problem to solve. All you need to make sure is that you measure your ingredients accurately.

If you're ready to tackle the world of baking, here are the key ingredients you'll need to know how to measure correctly:

Looking at it from the top or the bottom will yield different results.
Photo by Enrico Gutierrez

1 How To Measure Liquids

Use a measuring jug specifically meant for liquids. (You'll know it's for liquids since it will have a spout.) Place the jug on a level surface, and pour the liquid in it. To know if you've added enough or too much, bend over to read the measurement at eye level. The bottom curve of the liquid should be in line with the correct measurement.

Pack in the sugar to push air out.
Photo by Enrico Gutierrez
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2 How To Measure Brown Sugar

Use a spoon to add the sugar to a dry measuring cup. Then, pack it in with the back of the spoon until it is level to the top of the measuring cup. Brown sugar, when properly measured, should be firmly packed (unless otherwise stated) and still hold the shape of the cup even when it is turned out.

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It must be noted though, that the most accurate way to measure flour is with a weighing scale.
Photo by Enrico Gutierrez

3 How To Measure Flour

Just like the brown sugar, spoon the flour into the measuring cup but keep adding flour until a heaping mound is formed. Using the straight edge of a knife or spatula, sweep off the excess.

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Keep your measuring cups clean!
Photo by Majoy Siason

4 How To Measure Butter

Use a knife to cut up a block of butter. Cut it in equal halves for 1/2 cup blocks, into four for 1/4 cup pieces, and into eight for 1/8 cup pieces which are also equivalent to two tablespoons. Keep in mind that a typical bar of butter, 200-220 grams, is roughly equivalent to 1 cup.


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Only lightly grease your measuring utensils.
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5 How To Measure Sticky Ingredients

Lightly grease a measuring cup with oil before adding the sticky ingredient. This will allow the ingredient to more easily slip out of the measuring cup. You can use this method for ingredients like peanut butter, jam, and honey.


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6 How to Measure By Weight

If you have a weighing scale, this is the best way to measure ingredients when baking. This is because weight, not volume, is the more accurate method of measurement. If you have a recipe that lists its ingredients by weight, use a digital weighing scale to measure the ingredients.


Here's how:

Turn on a digital scale. Place the bowl you will use on the scale. Press "tare" to reset the measurement back to zero. Then, add the ingredients one at a time, pressing "tare" after every addition to accurately measure the weight of the ingredient as listed.

Even when you're experimenting with a recipe, it's good to use measuring tools and take note of the ingredients you add in. This baking technique will help you easily replicate your results easily every time.

Tips/feature was published in the July 2010 issue of Yummy Magazine. Minor edits have been made and additional text by the editors.


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