How many dry ounces is a cup of flour?

Flour is a pantry staple used in baking for making everything from breads and pastries to sauces and gravies. When following a recipe, it’s important to accurately measure flour so your baked goods turn out right. But with cups, ounces, grams and other units used, it can get confusing determining flour amounts.

So how many dry ounces are in a standard US cup of flour? The short answer is that 1 cup of flour equals approximately 4.25 ounces by weight. This conversion applies to any type of flour including all-purpose, bread, whole wheat, cake and others. Let’s take a closer look at flour measurements and how to convert between cups and ounces.

Measuring Flour by Volume vs Weight

Flour can be measured either by volume or by weight. Volume measures refer to standard US cup sizes used in most American recipes. Weight measures are given in ounces, grams or other units based on the actual mass of the flour.

When following a recipe, it’s generally best to use the measure specified – cups if it calls for cups, ounces for ounces, etc. That’s because volume and weight amounts won’t perfectly line up due to how densely packed the flour is. The same volume may weigh a little more or less depending on factors like humidity, sifting and scooping techniques.

However, there are some exceptions where substituting weight for volume or vice versa can be helpful:

  • Weighing flour gives more accurate, consistent results in baking recipes.
  • Weight measures can be easier for halving or doubling recipes.
  • Volume measures allow more flexibility when you don’t have a kitchen scale.

Converting between the two requires knowing the approximate equivalent values. While not exact, these handy reference points allow you to substitute cup and ounce amounts as needed.

Cups to Ounces Conversion

So how many ounces are in a cup of flour? Here is a quick overview:

  • 1 cup (US) of flour equals approximately 4.25 ounces by weight
  • 1⁄4 cup equals about 1 ounce
  • 1⁄3 cup approximately equals 1 1⁄3 ounces
  • 1⁄2 cup equals roughly 2 1⁄4 ounces
  • 2⁄3 cup is around 3 ounces
  • 3⁄4 cup equals approximately 3 1⁄4 ounces
  • 1 1⁄4 cups is close to 5 ounces
  • 1 1⁄2 cups is around 6 1⁄4 ounces
  • 2 cups equals about 8 1⁄2 ounces

These conversions apply to any dry flour including all-purpose (AP), cake, whole wheat, bread flour and others. Simply substitute the number of cups called for with the equivalent weight in ounces.

Cup to Ounces Formulas

To make flour measurement conversions easier, there are two simple formulas you can use:

  • 1 cup flour = 4.25 ounces
  • 1 ounce flour = 0.235 cups

So for example, if a recipe calls for 2 cups of flour, multiply 2 x 4.25 to get the equivalent weight of 8.5 ounces. Or to convert 12 ounces to cups, divide 12 by 0.235 to get approximately 5 cups.

Factors Affecting Cup to Ounce Conversions

While the above conversions are commonly used, the exact relationship between cup and ounce measurements can vary. Here are some of the factors that play a role:


Flour is naturally denser when packed. Sifting breaks up clumps and incorporates air which decreases density. One cup of sifted flour will weigh a little less than one cup of unsifted flour. Recipes specify when flour should be sifted first.


The way flour is scooped and leveled off also affects density. Lightly spooning flour into a measuring cup then leveling generally results in less flour by weight than packing it. Follow recipe instructions for best scooping method.


Flour absorbs moisture from the air. When the humidity is higher, flour weighs more than when it’s very dry. Storage conditions impact moisture levels so flour weight can vary.

Flour Type

The grind size and protein content of flour impacts density too. For example, a cup of sifted cake flour weighs around 4 ounces while the same amount of high-protein bread flour weighs 4 1⁄4 to 4 1⁄2 ounces.


Even among the same flour type, weight can differ slightly between brands due to variations in ingredients, milling processes and other proprietary factors.

Weight to Volume Conversions

When a recipe lists flour amounts by weight in ounces or grams instead of cups, you can use the following reference points for converting to volume measures:

Weight Volume (Cups)
1 ounce About 1⁄4 cup
2 ounces Approximately 1⁄2 cup
4 ounces Around 1 cup
8 ounces (1⁄2 pound) About 2 cups
16 ounces (1 pound) Roughly 4 cups

These conversions are based on all-purpose flour. As discussed above, sifting and scooping techniques along with humidity, flour type and brand can all impact the weight-to-volume relationship. But this chart provides a helpful guideline when substituting cups for ounces or grams of flour.

Standard US Cup Sizes

Using the proper cup size is important for accuracy when measuring flour by volume. Here are the specifications for standard US cup sizes used for flour and other dry ingredients:

  • 1 cup = 16 tablespoons
  • 1⁄2 cup = 8 tablespoons
  • 1⁄3 cup = 5 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon
  • 1⁄4 cup = 4 tablespoons
  • 1⁄8 cup = 2 tablespoons
  • 1 tablespoon = 3 teaspoons

Dry measuring cups specifically designed for flour, sugar and other dry goods should be used. Glass or plastic liquid measuring cups are not suitable substitutes as their sizes differ.

Metric Volume Measures

For bakers outside the United States, standard metric cup sizes based on the milliliter are typically used. Common equivalencies include:

  • 1 metric cup = 250 ml
  • 1⁄2 cup = 125 ml
  • 1⁄3 cup = 80 ml
  • 1⁄4 cup = 60 ml

So 125 grams of flour is approximately equal to 275 ml or 1 metric cup + 25 ml.

Tips for Measuring Flour

To get the most accurate flour measurements, keep these tips in mind:

  • Use appropriate cups for dry vs liquid ingredients.
  • Spoon flour lightly into cups, then level off excess.
  • Follow recipe instructions for sifting or not sifting.
  • Use a kitchen scale for most precise weights.
  • Store flour in air-tight containers away from moisture.
  • Stir or whisk flour before measuring if packed.
  • Use standard US sizes or metric amounts as specified.

Sample Conversions

Let’s practice converting some sample flour amounts between cups and ounces using the approximate equivalencies:

Cups to Ounces

  • 2 cups flour = 8.5 ounces
  • 1⁄2 cup flour = 2 1⁄4 ounces
  • 4 cups flour = 17 ounces
  • 3⁄4 cup flour = 3 1⁄4 ounces

Ounces to Cups

  • 10 ounces flour = About 2 1⁄2 cups
  • 6 ounces flour = Around 1 1⁄2 cups
  • 12 ounces (3⁄4 pound) flour = Approximately 3 cups
  • 1 ounce flour = About 1⁄4 cup


While volume and weight measures won’t perfectly correspond, knowing the general relationship between cups and ounces of flour allows you to easily substitute amounts. On average, 1 US cup of flour weighs 4.25 ounces. But humidity, sifting, flour variety and other factors impact the conversion. For best results, use standard dry measuring cups for volume and a food scale for weight. And be sure to use the type of measure called for in the recipe for most accurate results.

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