How Much Does Shortening Weigh?

Shortening being weighed

Weigh shortening for a more accurate measure

Did you know that a half cup of shortening does not weigh the same as a half cup of butter? I didn’t!  Since going dairy-free, I tend to rely on shortening more and more for baking. Measuring it in a measuring cup can be messy as the cup gets very greasy and I worry that it’s not accurate. Then someone suggested weighing shortening with a scale and I found that it works great. The only problem is that most recipes are written for butter.

When I weighed the same amount of shortening (for example, 1/2 cup should weigh 4 ounces), it looked like too much. Sure enough it was. I did some research and found out that shortening does, in fact, weigh less than butter because butter has added water. If you use a measuring cup, you are good but if you decide to use a scale, use this conversion chart instead. The reason it might not be as accurate is because when you measure shortening in a cup, there might be an air bubble or two.
So how much does shortening weigh? It all depends upon the measure. The chart below came from Cook It Simply here. And here is a link to the scale that you see. It’s small and easy to use. I do get a tiny kickback if you buy it from this link (thanks in advance!). Hope this helps your dairy-free cooking!
***By the way, be on the lookout for a review/recipe for Bob’s Gluten-Free Pie Crust mix. The dairy-free version is slightly different to the butter version. All in all, though, I loved it!

Vegetable Shortening Graph

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3 Responses to How Much Does Shortening Weigh?

    Margaret July 26, 2015 at 6:08 am #

    Amy, It’s about specific gravity. Four ounces (1/2 cup) water weighs 4 ounces. But oil is lighter than water. Therefore, enough shortening to measure 1/2 cup will not weigh as much as 1/2 cup water or milk.

    Squeaky October 11, 2015 at 3:01 pm #

    Thanks for this! I always thought my pie crusts had a bit too much shortening in it! 20g too much, apparently!


  1. The Best Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Pumpkin Pie recipe and Bob's Gluten-Free Pie Crust review | Amy the Family ChefAmy the Family Chef - November 4, 2014

    […] 1/2 cup of shortening does not weigh 4 ounces like its butter equivalent. Get the equivalents here on this post about how much shortening weighs. I now own a scale and find it much easier and less messy to weigh […]

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