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5 Reasons to Avoid a New Smart Food Scale Today

Reasons to Avoid a New Smart Food Scale

5 Reasons to Avoid a New Smart Food Scale Today

Key Points

  • Smart food scales are gaining popularity in America’s kitchens, but there are several reasons to avoid them, including added expense and the use of cups and spoons in American recipes.
  • Using a smart food scale with American recipes can be confusing due to the need for conversions between grams and ounces.
  • Liquid ingredients measure the same whether on a kitchen scale or in a measuring cup, so precision is not as important for non-baking recipes.
  • Calibrating a smart food scale regularly can be time-consuming, while measuring cups do not require any calibration.
  • Cheaper smart food scales may not be as accurate, making them less reliable than measuring cups.

You’ll find smart food scales in professional kitchens, where they’re used for precisely measuring ingredients. Are there reasons to avoid a new smart food scale?

If you watch The Great British Bake Off, you’ll see that all the competing home chefs measure ingredients. Whether they’re baking cakes or loaves of bread, competitors carefully measure out ingredients.

But in the U.S., home chefs tend to prefer using measuring cups and spoons over food scales. And there are some excellent reasons to go the traditional way, too. We’ve put together some compelling reasons to avoid a new smart food scale. But first, let’s jump into some background information.

Some Background on the Smart Food Scale

There are two reasons for using a smart food scale:

  • Precision measuring for baking and cooking
  • Portion control for healthy eating

So, whichever reason has you interested in a smart food scale, let’s look at some more information. Smart food scales often connect to phone apps for those wanting to track food intake.

That connection makes it handy to know exactly what and how much you eat. Smart kitchen scales often work with third-party apps like Fitbit or WeightWatchers so that you can navigate the world of fitness more smoothly.

For bakers and home chefs wanting more accuracy in weighing ingredients, smart food scales are a natural result of the IoT (Internet of Things) around our homes. Taking a mechanical scale and making it more intelligent came about as a result of wanting to connect food scales to apps.

Reasons to Avoid a Smart Food Scale

Smart food scales are gaining popularity in America’s kitchens. With the rise of British baking and cooking shows, Americans want to know what the fuss is all about. But there are still several reasons you might want to avoid making the switch. So, here are a few reasons to avoid a new smart food scale.

1. Added Expense

Best Overall
Etekcity Nutrition Smart Food Kitchen Scale
$15.49
  • Max weight: 11lbs
  • Multi-purpose health app functionality included
  • Connectivity: Bluetooth
  • Features a barcode scanner function (US only)
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
01/25/2024 12:09 am GMT

A smart food scale might represent an unnecessary added expense if you’re not a professional or very serious home baker. Even though they aren’t costly, your budget may not allow for items you rarely use.

And while other countries use grams to measure dry ingredients, we’re not quite there in American kitchens. So, save your money by avoiding a smart food scale.

2. American Recipes Use Cups and Teaspoons

While professional recipes use ounces and grams to measure baking ingredients, most American recipes use cups and spoons. This makes it hard to convert how many tablespoons equals how many grams or ounces.

Not all ingredients weigh the same amount, so using a smart food scale means knowing how much a cup of sugar weighs compared to a cup of flour. Here are a few examples.

1 Cup of Dry IngredientsWeight in Grams
Corn flour or cornstarch112 grams
All-purpose flour120 grams
Chocolate chips170 grams
Packed brown sugar200 grams
White sugar198 grams
Unsifted powdered sugar125 grams

Look at the differences only in the types of sugars! Now you can see that using American recipes with a kitchen scale might get confusing, and that’s a good reason to avoid a smart food scale.

3. Liquid Ingredients Measure the Same

Liquid ingredients measure the same whether on a kitchen scale or in a measuring cup. Their volume isn’t affected in the same way as dry ingredients.

So, if you’re making a smoothie or blending a coffee drink, you don’t need to worry about the exact ingredient amounts. It’s primarily with baking that precision makes a big difference in your recipe’s outcome.

4. No Calibration Necessary with Measuring Cups

Another reason to avoid a new smart food scale is the need to calibrate it regularly. And while it isn’t a huge deal, it is one more step you may not have time for when prepping dinner on a work night.

Different models have slightly different calibration methods. So, if you’re familiar with the process for one smart food scale, it may not be the same with another.

However, measuring cups don’t require any calibration. Just take them out of the cupboard and start filling them. If your grandma’s brownies are any indication, measuring cups work fine for most home bakers. She added a pinch of love and a dash of sweetness for brownies you’ll never forget.

5. Cheaper Smart Food Scales Might Lose Accuracy

It is true that you get what you pay for regarding the accuracy of some smart food scales. Not all scales consistently measure the same amount precisely. And if you don’t get accuracy, why not just use a measuring cup?

Higher-end smart food scales are consistently more accurate but come with a heftier price tag. So, there are some drawbacks either way you go.

Alternatives to Smart Food Scales

If you want to avoid a new smart food scale, here are some excellent alternatives.

Measuring Cups and Spoons

Our Pick
Simply Gourmet Measuring Cups and Spoons
$30.99
  • Designed with high-quality stainless steel 
  • Dishwasher-safe
  • Embossed measurement
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
01/25/2024 12:49 am GMT

It’s true that not all measuring cups and spoons are created equally. There may be a tiny difference in the ingredient amount in each measurement.

However, a good quality set won’t cost an arm and a leg. So, if you’ve dropped your measuring cups often enough, there’s a dent; it might be time for a new set.

We like the flat base of Simply Gourmet’s design. It reduces spills and lets you fill the cup more consistently. They also have U.S. measurements (imperial) and metric equivalents. So, if your recipe comes from across the pond, you’re still covered.

And they come with a quality set of measuring spoons. So, you’re good for larger quantity ingredients like sugar and flour without missing out on precision spice measurements.

Our Pick
Spring Chef Magnetic Measuring Spoons
$9.99
  • Single metal construction and heavy-duty premium stainless steel
  • Dual-sided
  • Include a leveler
  • BPA-free
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
01/25/2024 12:54 am GMT

If you only need a new set of measuring spoons, we’re fond of Spring Chef. They fit inside spice jars, which is an answer to many baker’s prayers.

They’re also magnetic, so they nest together easily without the little band that always breaks. They also have U.S. and metric markings, so there’s no conversion worry.

Mechanical Scale

Our Pick
Taylor Mechanical Kitchen Weighing Food Scale
$25.00
  • Polished stainless steel finish
  • Can be recalibrated by using the adjustment knob
  • Capacity of 11 lbs./50g
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
01/25/2024 12:55 am GMT

If you want to avoid a new smart food scale because you don’t need more connectivity but still want to weigh your ingredients, a mechanical scale is the answer. The Taylor brand has made precision kitchen scales for more than 150 years. So, you can count on their accuracy.

The easy-to-read dial shows food weight in U.S. and metric standards. And that means no matter where you get your recipe, you can measure without conversion. Plus, recalibration goes smoothly with a manual adjustment knob.

Conversion Chart

Our Pick
Kitchen Conversion Chart Magnet
$9.87
  • Gloss water-resistant finish
  • Extra strength magnetic backing
  • 6 x 8 inches
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
01/25/2024 12:55 am GMT

An easy-to-read conversion chart keeps you cooking without worry, especially when it comes in a handy magnet that sticks to the side of your fridge. You’ll appreciate how straightforward it is to convert measurements at a glance when you’re up to your elbows in bread dough.

And if you spill flour on your chart, it’s no big deal when you can simply wipe it right down. We like this magnet-style conversion chart for easy kitchen math. Convert dry weights or liquids without getting your phone screen sticky trying to Google while cooking.

References

Instead of using a smart food scale to measure food portions when trying to make healthy eating decisions, use references as a practical method. These are easy ways to remember and eyeball food quantities on your plate.

They make it easy to stick to your health goals by helping you approximate how much food you eat, even when you’re not at home.

Common ItemComparable Weight
Your fistAbout 1 cup
Lip balm or your thumb1 ounce of cheese or meat
Deck of cards or your palm3 ounces of meat
Tip of your thumb1 tablespoon
Tip of your finger1 teaspoon

Portion Control Guides

Our Pick
21 Day Portion Control Containers
$11.97
  • Made from high-grade quality polypropylene 
  • Dishwasher-safe, microwave-safe, and freezer-safe
  • Come with bonus material (a portion control guide, PDF planner, recipe e-book, and more)
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
01/25/2024 01:13 am GMT

Another option for avoiding a smart food scale when eating more healthily is using a portion control guide. You can measure food beforehand using portion-control containers, so meal or snack times are stress-free.

The beauty of these containers is their simplicity in teaching you to start estimating portion control independently. Like the references mentioned above, once you start recognizing how much a food portion is, you’ll have more success eating healthily.

Instead of weighing your food, you’ll fill the portion-control containers with the corresponding food type. Use the bigger containers for fruits and vegetables. But only use the tiniest ones for seeds and dressings.

Reading Food Labels

Our Pick
Beyond Labels: A Doctor and a Farmer Conquer Food Confusion
$30.00
  • 448 pages
  • Tips on what to eat, how to find and prepare it, how to save money and time in the kitchen, and more
  • Rating of 4.7/5 on Amazon
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
01/25/2024 01:19 am GMT

Food packaging labels share information on serving size, weight, calories, and nutrients. And while most of us glance at these labels periodically, we rarely take the time to weigh our portions compared to the recommendation.

Estimations on food portions are still beneficial to weight loss, especially when compared to the food label. But it helps to know that two pounds of raw meat might only yield 1.5 pounds of cooked meat. So, reading and understanding food labels might help you meet your health goals.

Wrapping Up: Reasons to Avoid a New Smart Food Scale Today

Now you know some of the reasons to avoid smart food scales so that you can make a smart buying decision. Smart food scales are an added expense that you may not need if you’re not a professional baker.

In addition, American recipes use cups and tablespoons, so making the conversion to grams could prove tricky. Plus, don’t skilled bakers, aka grandmothers, use a pinch of this or a dash of that?

Not all smart food scales measure ingredients consistently, especially lower-cost options. That’s why you might want to save your hard-earned dollars. A great set of measuring cups and spoons, mechanical scales, and using references are great alternatives.

Summary Table

Reasons to Avoid a New Smart Food Scale
1. Added Expense
2. American Recipes Use Cups and Teaspoons
3. Liquid Ingredients Measure the Same
4. No Calibration Necessary with Measuring Cups
5. Cheaper Smart Food Scales Might Lose Accuracy

Frequently Asked Questions

Why should you measure food on a smart food scale?

Weighing ingredients on a smart food scale isn’t only for people trying to lose weight and live a healthier lifestyle. It also provides accurate measurements for baking so your cakes are light and fluffy. Food scales will make you bake like a pro.

Why do Americans measure with cups instead of grams?

For early American pioneers, scales were large and cumbersome, making cooking difficult on a wagon train. However, cooks had cups and spoons to estimate the amounts of ingredients to use. And it became the norm for American recipes.

Are grams or cups more accurate in baking?

Measuring flour by grams is more accurate for baking. And that’s because it eliminates variables like compressing flour into one cup but adding more air into the next cup. Measuring in grams gives you the exact amount of flour the recipe calls for.

Are digital food scales accurate?

Most digital food scales are accurate enough for most recipes. They generally measure in 0.1-gram increments. When you consider that a gram is an eighth of one ounce, you’ll see the level of detail and precision digital food scales reach.

How do you know if your smart food scale is calibrated correctly?

Weigh a nickel to see if your food scale is accurate. Nickels weigh exactly five grams, so you’re good to go if your food scale measures the same. If not, you should recalibrate.

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