Tablespoons to Cups: Quick Conversion Guide

Navigating the world of cooking measurements can be a challenge, especially when you don’t have the proper tools on hand. In many recipes, ingredients are measured in cups, which may not be ideal if you don’t have measuring cups readily available. Thankfully, there’s an alternative approach using tablespoons that works just as well for a wide variety of ingredients.

In this article, we’ll explore the relationship between cups and tablespoons to help you accurately measure your ingredients. Additionally, we’ll discuss how this conversion may vary for solid, liquid, and dry products, so that you can confidently tackle any recipe that comes your way.

Key Takeaways

  • Understanding conversions between cups and tablespoons for accurate measurements
  • Method for measuring ingredients using tablespoons as an alternative to cups
  • Recognizing the varied conversions for solid, liquid, and dry products

How to Measure Liquids

Measuring liquids is quite simple and essential for your cooking and baking needs. As liquids can fill any measuring vessel’s space or melt into the vessel, a variety of units are available for liquid measurement. Here’s a quick guide:

  • Tablespoons (tbsp): US, Metric, and Imperial tablespoons differ slightly. One US tablespoon equals about 14.8 milliliters, while a Metric tablespoon measures 15 milliliters, and an Imperial tablespoon contains approximately 17.76 milliliters.
  • Teaspoons (tsp): One US teaspoon equals about 4.93 milliliters. Keep in mind that three teaspoons make one tablespoon.
  • Fluid ounces (fl oz): A fluid ounce equals about 29.57 milliliters. Note that eight fluid ounces make up one US cup, and it conveniently weighs 8 ounces too.
  • Cups (c): One US cup measures 237 milliliters. It is commonly used for measuring larger liquid volumes.

Remember, when measuring liquids like butter and shortening, they should be melted or at room temperature to ensure accurate measurements. Though dry ingredients are often best measured by weight, these liquid volume units can help you achieve precise and delicious outcomes in your kitchen.

Table of Conversions

Cups to Other Units

CupsTablespoonsFluid OuncesGrams
⅓ Cup5 tbsp2.33 fl. oz75.7 g
½ Cup8 tbsp4 fl. oz113.4 g
⅔ Cup10 tbsp5.33 fl. oz151.4 g
1 Cup16 tbsp8 fl. oz226.8 g

Remember, you can use a conversion calculator to convert between other units of volume like milliliters, liters, gallons, quarts, pints, and cubic meters.

How Many Tablespoons in a Cup?

How to Make It Simpler

When measuring just one cup, you can expect to use 16 tablespoons, 8 fluid ounces, or 226.8 grams. To make it easier, we’ve provided some typical conversions below for butter and/or shortening:

  • In ⅓ of a cup, there are 5 tablespoons and 1 teaspoon. This is equivalent to 2 and ⅓ fluid ounces, and 75.7 grams.
  • In ½ a cup, there are 8 tablespoons. This equals 4 fluid ounces and 113.4 grams.
  • In ⅔ of a cup, there are 10 tablespoons and 2 teaspoons. This is the same as 4 and ⅔ fluid ounces, and 151.4 grams.

To further simplify these calculations, you can use helpful tools, like marked butter sticks. A stick of butter is 8 ounces or half a cup. Most butter sticks have measurement markings on the wax paper coatings, making it easier for you to measure the right amount.

How Many Tablespoons are in a Stick of Butter?

Measuring Solids

Measuring solids accurately is essential for successful baking. Using a scale set to zero is the most accurate method when dealing with dry or solid ingredients. Kitchen scales are available in various styles and colors, so you can choose one that fits your kitchen’s aesthetic. When measuring flour, for example, 2 cups would equal 9 ounces, which you can accurately measure using a scale set to zero. A good kitchen scale can measure in grams or ounces by selecting the desired unit on the display.

Simple Baking Conversions

If you prefer to measure your baking ingredients by volume, here are some easy conversions to help you:

Whole Wheat Flour4.5 ounces127.58 g1
Cake or Pastry Flour4 ounces113.4 g1
White Sugar7 ounces198.45 g1
Brown Sugar7.5 ounces212.625 g1
Nuts4 ounces113.4 g1

Keep these conversions handy when baking, and you’ll achieve excellent results in no time!

Should I Sift My Flour?

Yes, sifting flour is still necessary even though today’s flour is generally free from grains and pests. Sifting helps evenly distribute the flour particles, leading to more accurate measurements and better results in your baking projects. Just remember to weigh your flour before sifting it to ensure your recipe turns out as intended. Happy baking!


Accuracy in cooking and baking is essential for achieving the best results. Using the correct measurements for dry and wet ingredients can significantly impact your culinary success. Common units of measurement like tablespoons, ounces, fluid ounces, grams, cups, and milliliters are vital in achieving precision. Thus, familiarize yourself with conversions, as mastering them will enable you to confidently tackle various recipes. Remember, a well-measured dish reflects your skills in the kitchen!

Frequently Asked Questions

How many cups is 3 tablespoons?

Three tablespoons is equivalent to 3/16 of a cup or approximately 0.19 cups.

What’s the cup equivalent of 4 tablespoons?

Four tablespoons is equal to 1/4 of a cup.

How many cups are in 12 tablespoons?

There are 12 tablespoons in 3/4 of a cup.

What’s the tablespoon count in 1/2 cup?

In 1/2 cup, there are 8 tablespoons.

How many cups is 10 tablespoons?

Ten tablespoons is equivalent to 5/8 of a cup or approximately 0.63 cups.

Is 8 tablespoons equal to 1 cup?

Yes, 8 tablespoons is equal to 1 cup.

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Cassie brings decades of experience to the Kitchen Community. She is a noted chef and avid gardener. Her new book "Healthy Eating Through the Garden" will be released shortly. When not writing or speaking about food and gardens Cassie can be found puttering around farmer's markets and greenhouses looking for the next great idea.
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