Conversion charts

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When I started my food blog, I was burdened with the decision on whether to use the imperial or metric system when specifying quantities of ingredients by mass and volume.  While the Internet is a great venue to find different recipes from around the world, it also creates a lot of confusion about the different measurements.  Converting from metric to imperial or vice versa is not always straightforward, especially since a cup in the UK is not quite the same as a cup in the States.  So if you want to be precise, it is crucial to know where the recipe is coming from.

You must be wondering where I am writing from, right?  I am based in North America, but I have decided to incorporate both imperial with metric measurements into my recipes.  I will measure different ingredients in different ways:

  • Liquid ingredients are generally measured by volume.  And since there is no internationally-agreed upon standard definition of the cup, one cup will refer to a U.S. cup (commonly defined as 240 mL or about 8 fl.oz).  However, as long as you use the same sized up to measure all the ingredients in a recipe, you don’t have to worry about having your ingredients in the wrong proportions to one another.
  • Dry bulk ingredients, such as sugar and flour, are measured by volume (1/2 cup flour).  This includes small quantities of salt and spices (1 tsp ground cumin).  
  • Meats are generally measured by weight (2 lb ground beef) or by count (4 pork chops).
  • Vegetables are measured by volume (2 cups broccoli florets).

Most of my recipes don’t require an exact conversion.  But for my international friends, I have provided a quick and easy conversion table using approximate numbers.  If you have chosen a particularly tricky recipe, or you just happen to be a perfectionist, have a look at the precise table for conversions from imperial to metric.All conversion charts



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2 Responses to Conversion charts
  1. randy dandy
    June 14, 2014 | 5:19 pm

    you said 1 cup will refer to a us imperial cup.well these are 2 diferent measurments, us being american and imperial being british and more volume.

    • Dr. Grace
      June 21, 2014 | 4:45 pm

      Thanks for the comment, Randy. For all my recipes, I refer to the American cup which is defined as 240mL or 8 fl oz. I have edited my post for clarity.

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