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Weighing and measuring skills - Kids' Kitchen

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Learning to weigh and measure ingredients is a fundamental skill in cooking and a great way for children to practise maths skills. Explore BBC Good Food's Kids' Kitchen videos, recipes and advice for more essential skills.

BBC Good Food’s series of Kids' Kitchen videos, recipes and advice will help you and your children learn essential skills for cooking, teaching you and them how to use these skills to create a variety of delicious dishes from scratch.

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Learning how to weigh and measure ingredients is a fundamental skill in cooking and a great way for your children to practise their maths skills. Once they’re feeling confident in cooking they can use some estimation for things like stir-fries, pasta sauce or stews, but if you want to get a recipe just right, you need to weigh and measure carefully. For baking recipes such as cakes, biscuits and bread, this is particularly important. There are lots of ways to weigh and measure and many pieces of equipment you can use to help you. Teach your kids how to use these different pieces of kitchen kit and they’ll be able to make almost anything.

Recipes that use weighing and measuring

Chocolate overnight oats

Cheesy sweetcorn cornbread

Easy baked tomato risotto

Check out our handy video guide for our chocolate overnight oats recipe:

Step-by-step weighing and measuring tutorial

Child spooning yoghurt onto oats

Before you start

Make sure you have everything you need for the recipe, there’s nothing worse than getting half way through a recipe and discovering you’re missing a vital ingredient or piece of kit. Weighing and measuring your ingredients before you start will help to make you feel organised.

Ways to weigh and measure

Child using digital scales

Digital scales 

To get accurate measurements it’s best to use digital scales. To use digital scales, turn them on then place a bowl or jug on the scales. Reset the display to zero by pressing the TARE or ON button and make sure they are set to the correct metric (we use g for grams and ml for millilitres at BBC Good Food) now add the ingredient to the bowl/jug until you reach the correct measurement.

Mechanical scales

This type of weighing scale uses a spring to weigh ingredients. Mechanical scales come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. They are not as accurate as a digital scale but are easier to use.

Child pouring jug of milk

Measuring jug

You can use scales or a jug to measure liquid ingredients like water, milk and oil. Use a clear plastic or glass jug with easy-to-read measurements on the side.

Child adding spoonful of honey

Spoon measures

For measuring small quantities, its useful to use spoon measures - not the spoons you’ll find in the cutlery drawer, these won’t give you accurate measurements!

These come in the following sizes -

tbsp (tablespoon) = 15g

tsp (teaspoon) = 5g

½ tsp = 2.5g

¼ tsp = 1.25g

To measure accurately, fill the measuring spoon right to the top by scooping up the ingredient then swiping across the top of the spoon measure with your finger or a knife.

Knife levelling cocoa powder

Cup measures

You may find cup measures in American or Australian recipes, we don’t use these in BBC Good Food recipes.

Two jars of oats with raspberries

Recipes that use weighing and measuring

Chocolate overnight oats

Cheesy sweetcorn cornbread

Easy baked tomato risotto

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We’d love to see what you’ve been cooking. Send your pictures to us at goodfoodwebsite@immediate.co.uk or tag us online with #gfkidskitchen.

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