How Do I Convert My Recipes to the Metric System?

Good Questions

Q: I have a good friend from Texas who is getting married at the end of this month and then moving to Switzerland. I am making her a cookbook with traditional Texas recipes.

It takes a certain knack to work with the metric system when you're used to American measurements, so I would like to convert the recipes to metric to make life a little easier for her. Any good ideas for converting recipes to metric? I have found calculators for flour and sugar, but what about other ingredients. Has anyone done this before? — Sent by PriscillaEditor: Priscilla, what a nice project for your friend! We have a couple of thoughts. First of all, don't get tripped up by the difference between actual metric volume measurements and metric weight. If you want to just convert the recipes into milliliters and liters, then there are straightforward conversions you can do. (Of course, the non-standardized cup has all different conversions into mL depending on where you are; it can be anything from 180 to 250, depending on what part of the world you're in!)

But for basic conversions from cups into metric volume measurements, check out this chart:
Conversion Charts at foodgeeks

Overall, though, if she has a regular set of American measuring cups, then why not just leave the recipes in the format she is most accustomed to? The conversions between the metric and Americans system really trip people up when they are being asked to deal with formats they are not used to. If she has the measuring cups and spoons, then it would probably be easiest for her to have the recipes as they are.

Readers, what do you think?

Related: Good Question: Can I Adapt European Appliances for American Electrical Outlets?

(Image: foodgeeks)

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Faith is the executive editor of The Kitchn and the author of three cookbooks. They include Bakeless Sweets (Spring 2013) as well as The Kitchn's first cookbook, which will be published in Fall 2014. She lives in Columbus, Ohio with her husband Mike.

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