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Things that Measure: What to Look for

Key Points

· Measuring your food helps you keep track of your nutrition.

· Tracking protein is difficult unless you know the portion size.

Measuring Spoons

· Stainless steel (heavier gage like 18/8 is more durable). Plastic measuring spoons are lightweight and can be put in a dishwasher.

· Aluminum is a metal that can bend easily and turns dull if washed in a dishwasher.

· Look for a set that has at least a ¼ teaspoon up to 1 tablespoon measures.

· Plastic sets are priced from about $1 to over $30. Stainless sets start around $6 and can be up to $50 for fancy, decorative sets.

Measuring Cups

· Stainless steel is most durable and dishwasher safe. Find a heavier gage weight like 18/8 if possible.

· Aluminum is less expensive than stainless steel. This metal is more easily bent and dented. Washing in the dishwasher will make them dull.

· Plastic measuring cups come in a variety of colors and styles. Check to see if the plastic measuring cups you want to buy are microwave safe. Most are usually dishwasher safe.

· Tempered glass is microwave and dishwasher safe. Brands include Pyrex and Anchor Hocking. Safe for microwave use.

· Measuring cups for dry ingredients are the ones that come in separate measures (1/8 cup to 1 cup).

· Measuring cups for liquids come in stainless steel, aluminum, plastic and tempered glass. Sizes are usually 1 cup, 2 cups and 4 cups (1 quart).

· Prices can range from a few dollars to $50.

Food Scales

· There are digital (requires batteries) or mechanical/dial types that look like what is in the produce section, but smaller for home use. With a mechanical/dial-type scale, avoid “high capacity.” These scales are meant to measure in pounds, rather than ounces. That makes it a challenge to measure accurately. Prices start around $8.

· Digital scales are easier to read when looking for how many ounces the food weighs. Prices start around $25.

· Scales that can zero out after you place your dish on top can measure each ingredient as it is added to the dish. Some allow you to use your own dish and some have a bowl you have to use.

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