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How to Properly Measure Coffee

coffee scoop

Certain health advantages come with regular coffee use. In addition to being a great way to unwind, it can also help prevent the development of specific ailments. Liver disease, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s, and many other disorders fall within this category. Packages of coffee are available in varying sizes to meet the needs of various clients.

Factors that affect coffee measurement variation

It is common to read advice on how many tablespoons of coffee you should use to produce the best cup. However, you might now know how much coffee is in a pound. Unfortunately, because of many circumstances, it may not be feasible to determine precisely how many tablespoons of coffee there are in a pound.

Quantity per scoop

The amount of coffee that each person scoops vary. While some people scoop only a tiny quantity, others attempt to scoop as much as possible on a single tablespoon at a time. As a result, these two individuals consume the same pound of coffee over vastly different periods.

Coffee kind

While some can get just one bean in every tablespoon, others can collect as many as three beans in each tablespoon. The reason is that the quantity of tablespoons will vary depending on whether you’re using whole beans or ground. As a result, finishing a pound of coffee may need more teaspoons for someone who consumes one coffee bean for every tablespoon than for someone who consumes three beans per tablespoon.

Tablespoon-sized measurement

Tablespoons come in a variety of shapes and sizes. As a result, it’s impossible to estimate the precise number of tablespoons needed to brew a pound of coffee. If you have a little tablespoon, you will use up a pound of coffee more slowly than someone with a bigger one. 0.18oz to 0.35oz is the typical size of tablespoons. According to these estimates, it will take anything from 45 to 90 tablespoons of ground coffee to use up a pound of the stuff, depending on the size of your tablespoon.

Tablespoons vs. pounds

When it comes to volume, tablespoons, and pounds are two different things. Measures such as tablespoons and pounds are distinct from one another. There is no direct translation between the two. The coarseness of the grind of the coffee is a crucial factor in a pounds-to-tablespoons conversion. More coffee grounds are produced per pound of coarsely ground coffee because coarsely ground coffee takes up more space than finely ground coffee of the same weight.

A couple of tablespoons per shot is what you’ll find in many recommendations on how to create the best cup of coffee. However, it is not clear how much coffee is in one tablespoon. Tablespoons aren’t used as a conventional unit of measure. The reason is that tablespoon sizes may vary. Aside from size differences, it may also vary in depth.

Reasons why varying cup numbers are made from ground pounds

Close-up of an open Italian coffee maker with ground coffee in a metal filter, on many roasted coffee beans, top view

Many variables might affect how many cups of coffee you can get out of a pound of beans. Several factors affect how many cups of coffee you can make in a coffee ground pounds. These factors include a method of brewing, cup size, and coffee strength.

Cup dimensions

The larger the cup, the better, especially if you’re brewing your coffee at home. When you don’t have to worry about making your coffee, it saves you time and effort. Because of this, you’ll receive less than the standard 47 cups out of a pound of coffee.

Coffee potency

Those who want their coffee mild will need more than the standard 33.8 ounces of water to get their preferred coffee-to-water ratio. With this, you’ll receive fewer or more cups of brew, depending on how much water you use to brew.  If you want a more potent cup of coffee, you may choose to reduce the water you use while brewing your coffee beans.

Method of brewing

The amount of water required per pound of coffee beans will vary depending on the brewing technique. As a result, you have a wide range of options for brewing coffee. Espresso, cappuccino, latte, double espresso, and French press are just a few options.

Reminders when measuring coffee

Hand drip coffee , Barista pouring water over the coffee powder

When it comes to your coffee, what’s the best way to measure it? Is it through a tablespoon, a scoop, or a coffee scale?

Different roasts provide different masses.

There is no room for error in the specialty coffee industry. Ideally, grams should be used to weigh out the components for a cup of coffee; instead of using volume-based measures like cups or teaspoons, this method is more accurate and trustworthy.

Because this is the reason: The mass of each coffee is unique. The lower the moisture level, the darker the coffee is roasted. To put it another way, the heavier the roasted coffee, the less it weighs.

This is because several transformations occur during the roasting process of coffee. The bean’s moisture content is one of the numerous modifications. The moisture level of a green coffee, which is a coffee that hasn’t been roasted, is somewhere about 11%.  Weighing 15 to 20 percent less, the beans now have a lower moisture content.

Roasting reduces the moisture content to between 35% and 40%. This occurs because the water in the bean’s structure is converted to steam and then expelled. As a result of the reduced moisture content, the beans now weigh around 15% less than they did before roasting.

Preparing coffee without using scales

Scales are essential in preparing coffee because they provide us with the perfect amount of coffee and water we need, allowing us to fine-tune our brew’s flavor and ensure that each cup is just as good as the last. However, not everyone has this equipment. The $20 price tag might be a bit much for some.

The good news is even if you don’t have a scale, you can measure your ingredients with a measuring cup and tablespoon scoops and still be in control.

Here’s how to measure coffee with or without scales.

The golden ratio

The golden ratio is considered the sweet spot in measuring coffee. The rule of thumb is for every 1 gram of coffee; you have around 15-18 grams of water: 1:15:18.

You’ll achieve balanced bitter and acid notes, pleasant sugar, and harmonized flavor when you have the ratio. If you have a different ratio, like a 1:22 ratio, you might have a too weak or too bitter coffee. Too little water, like 1:22, would also be too sour.

With scales

  1. Make sure that the scale is placed on a flat and even surface before turning it on.
  2. Put the coffee beans container on the scale.
  3. Press on “tare” to set the scale back to zero.
  4. Place the coffee in the container.

Note: When measuring, do it before grinding. This way, you will know the amount you will grind. If you do the opposite, you might have a lot of leftovers.

Check out our best coffee scales you can buy.

Without a scale:

The said golden ratio is easy to do with a scale. In the absence of one, you may use any of these steps:

Using tablespoon

As a general rule, you can get about 4-7 grams of entire coffee beans in a single tablespoon of beans. For simplicity’s sake, suppose that each level scoop has 5g.

Using a liquid measuring cup

A straight translation between the two units of measurement is because they are based on each other. Hence, the volume of liquid water in a 1g measuring cup is precisely equal to 1ml of liquid water.

How to calculate the coffee-to-water ratio for a single 8-ounce mug of coffee:

Barista Weighs Roasted Coffee Grains
  1. Measure the amount of water you need to make 8oz of coffee in your measuring cup and add it to the water in your kettle.
  2. Use a 1:15 ratio as a starting point for your practice. To get 15, multiply your total weight in water by the ratio (225 / 15). That’s how much coffee you should drink (15g).
  3. To make an 8-ounce mug of coffee, you’ll need 15 grams of coffee and 225 grams of water if you’re using a 1:15 ratio.
  4. Since each level tablespoon carries 5g of coffee, divide the entire coffee weight (15 g) by 5 to get the number of tablespoons you need. So you’ll need around three teaspoons of ground coffee for this recipe.

For 3 mugs of coffee at 8 oz. each

For 24 ounces of coffee, you’ll use a liquid measuring cup to figure out how much water you’ll need. Second, divide the total water weight by 17 to get how much coffee you need (680/17 = 40). 40 grams of coffee are required.

To find out how many tablespoons you’ll need, divide the entire amount of coffee by 5 (each level tablespoon carries 5g of coffee beans). So you’ll need 8 tablespoons of whole bean coffee for this recipe.

For 6 level tablespoons of coffee, how much water should be used?

Keeping a cheat sheet with a few go-to recipes and ratios is also a good idea. But, again, you’ll save time by not having to rerun the calculations over and over again.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. To determine how much coffee you’ve consumed, multiply the 6 teaspoons by 5.
  2. Second, divide your coffee bean count by the golden ratio to get your final number (in this case, 1:16).
  3. Next, 30 grams of coffee divided by 16 equals 480 grams. So to brew 30g of coffee at a 1:16 ratio, you’ll need 480ml of water.

Volume measuring limitations

Volume measuring is not always practical or accurate due to several variations. For one, coffee beans come in various shapes and sizes. Moreover, in terms of cup size, a cup of coffee from Panama might vary greatly, while the same cup from Indonesia can be much more significant.

However, size isn’t the sole consideration; density is as well. For example, 4g of coffee may be all that is in a tablespoon of coffee. As much as 7 g of coffee can be found in a tablespoon of various coffee (and yet, the beans can even look the same size).

Frequently asked questions

Why should I know about volume measurement?

The essential point is that careful volumetric measurement is far preferable to not trying to measure at all, but it is far from precise compared to using a coffee scale. As a result, the coffee you prepared might be too bitter or sour, even if you attempted to follow the golden ratio. Nevertheless, as a coffee connoisseur, it is strongly recommended that you invest in a scale at some point.

Why is it important to know the quantity of coffee?

Knowing how much good coffee to use is essential to producing superb coffee. The brew may be under-extracted if too much coffee is used. This coffee’s flavor profile will be sour, lacking in sweetness, salty, and complex in any way. A poor cup of coffee will taste flat and watery if we don’t add enough coffee to the brew.

As far as the ‘proper’ amount is concerned, there is no right or wrong answer, but rather a matter of personal preference. A starting point of roughly 60 grams of coffee per 1 liter of water (60g/L). This measurement has been agreed upon by the SCAA (Specialty Coffee Association of America) and some coffee experts.

A pound of coffee is how many tablespoons?

A few spoonfuls may be the handiest option when measuring your morning brew. However, this isn’t the best response to this question. Tablespoons are more of a visual assessment than precise measurements. Online research shows that a cup of coffee is 5,3 grams, 7 grams, or 8 grams (or 0.18 to 0.24 ounces) in weight, depending on the coffee you’re consuming. So, be sure, how much weight is your tablespoon?

A table-spoon weighs between 5 and 10 grams. Therefore, it’s possible to estimate that a pound of coffee beans provides between 45 and 90 tablespoons of coffee. However, variations because of tablespoon sizes should also be taken into consideration.

A pound of coffee beans makes how many cups of coffee?

You may want to know if you can save money by making your coffee at home or work, given the skyrocketing pricing of coffee at local establishments. Brewing your coffee saves money and is more convenient than buying ready-to-drink coffee at a café. For example, to make 47 cups of coffee, you’ll need 1.9 ounces of coffee beans and 33.8 ounces of water on average.

In a 12-ounce bag of ground coffee, how many cups of coffee can you make?

All coffee bags are available in either a 10-ounce, 12-ounce, 20-ounce, or 50-ounce size. Using a normal-sized tablespoon, you’ll need 2.5 tablespoons for every 6 ounces of water. As a result, a 12 oz. The ground coffee bag may make up to 68 cups of coffee of average size when used as directed.

If your coffee cup is more significant than usual, you will get fewer cups of coffee per 12 ounces of ground coffee than the average of 68 cups. However, if you use bigger or smaller tablespoons than the standard tablespoon size, you may be able to make more or fewer than 68 cups of coffee.


To estimate how many cups of coffee you’ll get out of a given amount of whole beans or ground coffee, use the characteristics listed above as a guideline. Either way, the optimum coffee brewing results can be achieved by following the recipe’s average measurements.

While cups, coffee scoops, and teaspoons can all measure the volume of coffee, these are all volume-based metrics. This renders them useless. All of them are inaccurate.

The origin, variety, processing, and degree of a coffee roast can all significantly impact its weight, as we saw in the section above.

However, even while one scoop may be equal to one cup, we may be raising or reducing the amount of coffee we use by a quarter. This can have a significant impact and lead to too little or too many extractions. Not to mention that we won’t be able to replicate a fantastic cup if we don’t have scales. So that is why scales are a good investment.