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What is the difference between 1 cup flour, sifted, and 1 cup sifted flour?

Mar 22, 2006 | From the kitchen of Rose

There is a big difference in the weight or amount of flour. 1 cup flour, sifted means you put the flour into the cup and then sift it. 1 cup sifted flour means to set the cup on a counter and sift the flour into the cup until it mounds above the top. Then, with a metal spatula or knife, level it off. Be sure to use a cup with an unbroken rim, referred to as a dry measure as opposed to a liquid measure which has a spout. With this second method you will have the least amount of flour because the flour is aerated. Do not be tempted to shake the cup or tap it as that compacts the flour.

Comments

I bought a bag of sifted flour not knowing it was sifted, made pizza using the same amount but it seems
like it came out different.

REPLY

I bought a bag of sifted flour not knowing it was sifted, made pizza using the same amount but it seems
like it came out different.

REPLY

rose Levy Beranbaum
rose Levy Beranbaum in reply to comment from Belle Foronda
10/ 1/2013 05:37 PM

yes belle, there is a difference.

REPLY

Belle Foronda
Belle Foronda
10/ 1/2013 03:38 AM

Is there a difference bet.1cup unsifted all purpose flour to 1cup sifted flour

REPLY

Rose

Go here (http://www.traditionaloven.com/conversions_of_measures/flour_volume_weight.html) to find weights and measurements. One cup all purpose flour weighs 125 grams

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Gene Russell
Gene Russell
03/10/2009 02:00 AM

For beginners it is best to follow recipes. So if it says sift... Sometimes even when you measure by weight sifting is necessary to properly incorporate certain ingredients. So until you get a 'feel' for cooking my advice for what it is worth is..

Follow the recipes as carefully as you can.

REPLY

BobtheBuilderturnedBaker
BobtheBuilderturnedBaker
03/ 9/2009 12:07 PM

riddle me this if you would be so kind. To sift, or not to sift.
how does one know when it is appropriate to sift a flour? And, if you use a measured weight, does it matter weather you sift or not?

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I would listen to what Rose says! =)

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Help, I am confused. Rose's reply says that sifted and unsifted weigh differently. Hector's reply say they they are the same weight. I must not be understanding this. Thanks

REPLY

The answer is probably! From your question I believe you are thinking the purpose of sifting is to remove debris from the flour. Even in your grandmother's era that would have been a secondary reason to sift flour. The main purpose is to improve measuring precision. The secondary reason is to eliminate clumping. Flour has a lot of variability due to many external factors. Humidity, the age of the flour, the type of wheat, etc. etc. Most old recipes rely on volume measurements. To achieve the most consistent volume measurements you must sift the flour. The classic technique is...
Place wax/parchment paper on counter.
Place flat topped meacuring cup in middle of paper.
Sift the flour directly into the measuring cup until the flour is mounded above the rim.
Use the flat edge of a knife/spatula to scrape the excess from the top.

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I have some old cookie receipts of my gramdmother's and they call for sifted flour. With todays flour do I need to sift it?

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i doubt if there is any difference--just a shorthand way of writing!

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hi!
i'm not from the states, and i need to know the difference between "1 cup of " and "cup of", i read it in a lot of recipes
thanks!

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when flour has been presifted and sits on the shelf it settles down and is virtually no longer sifted. just don't sift it again!

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Thank you Hector. Your creations on your web site are amazing!
Fran

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Fran, tap down your measuring cup as you fill it with your pre-sifted flour, and you will have unsifted flour. If you measure by weight, then you won't need to worry much as unsifted and pre-sifter flour weights almost the same.

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I have an old brownie recipe calling for 1 1/2 cups of unsifted flour. My flour is pre-sifted. Do I need to adjust the flour amount?
Thanks!

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Oh I see... a few posting previous Gary said he was making your Orange Glow Chiffon recipe... sorry about that.

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I agree, but it sounds like he is making a recipe from the box, not one of your recipes. Maybe I read that wrong though.

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when you're doing my recipes they will work best if you use my weights or volumes and ignore what's on the box or bag.

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Hi Gary - like Rose said, 1/4 cup of cake flour = 25 grams. But let's just go with their 1/4 c = 28 grams for now... if that was true, 2 1/2 c = 280 grams, not 225 or 252.

Anyway, I would call the company and ask them about the discrepancy printed on their box. Maybe you can talk to the person in charge of recipe testing and ask what the actual gram weight for that recipe is supposed to be.

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no, they're wrong--1 cup sifted into the cup and leveled off is 100 grams/3.5 ounces.

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Thank you Patrincia and Hector. I do have one additional question.

On the box of Swan's Down, it states 28 grams / 1/4 cup. Thus, 2 1/2 cups would be 252 grams, not 225. Was this a typo in the original recipe or am I doing something wrong?

THanks again. g

REPLY

Gary, you can safely assume that sifted, pre-sifted, or unsifted flour have the exact same weight.

Butter cakes don't require you to sift the flour, and pre-sifted brands won't harm. Most sponge cakes **DO** require sifted flour (again by yourself even if already pre-sifted). Basically, the rule of thumb is that if you are folding the flour then 'you' need to sift, but if you are only mixing the flour then you don't.

I always weight my flour prior to running it thru my sifter, and by the way, I've just got my battery operated sifter, it is a nice gadget that is fairly inexpensive, and saves you a lot of time and mess!

REPLY

Gary - it would be more important to sift flour if you were measuring by volume because flour can compact quite a bit, but since you are weighing, you don't need to. i think traditionally flour was sifted to removed particles, clumps, and airate the flour.

I will sometimes run a whisk through my dry ingredients to break up clumps or mix dry ingredients together, but I really like to weigh my ingredients because it's a much more accurate way to measure.

REPLY

Hello Rose. Great information you have. In your Orange Glow Chiffon, it calls for 2 1/4 cup cake flour (225 grams).

Thus, if I use Swan's Down, right out of the box I can just weigh it to 225 grams...yes? I called their factory and they said it's pre-sifted.

Or, do I need to sift the flour onto the digital scale? Either way, so far this cake turns out great everytime.

Thanks.

REPLY

Cup of sifted:

Cake flour: 3.5 oz, 100g
All-Purpose flour: 4 oz, 114g
Bread flour: 4.25 oz, 121g
Whole Wheat flour: 4.5 oz, 125g

REPLY

Karla, sorry about the frustration. We weight for a reason:

1 cup of flour differs in weight tremendously, depending if it was sifted or not, the type of flour, your ambient humidity, the brand of flour, and how the flour was stored!

REPLY

Karla J Zimmerman
Karla J Zimmerman
09/ 1/2007 10:15 PM

Where is a link to tell me how much a cup of sifted flour weighs. Everyone talks about how to measure, but I haven't found exactly how much the cup of flour is supposed to weigh.

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Sheila - baking mixes usually have added ingredients like salt, sugar, shortening, leavening, etc.

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SHEILA ROBERTSON
SHEILA ROBERTSON
06/11/2007 11:28 AM

what is the difference between all purpose baking mix and flour?

REPLY

they probably use a different method of measuring the flour. the weight i get is for the method i indicate. in any case my recipes are done by weight and cups are secondary.

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Hi Rose:

Your cook books state that one cup of flour weighs 156 grams, but the King Arthur Flour All Purpose Flour bag (and all other flours that I use) says that one cup weighs 120 grams. I live in Connecticut. Please explanin the difference.

Thanks, Karen

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no, but there is a difference between a cup of sifted powdered sugar.

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Is there a difference between a regular cup of powder sugar and a cup of powder sugar sifted?

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i'll ask my blog master!

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