Best Kitchen Scales to Buy in 2018

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You’d be hard pushed to get by as a keen cook these days without a set of kitchen scales, of which there are three main types: balance scales, mechanical scales and digital scales. The first – rare nowadays – look a bit like a seesaw. You position the weights on one arm and the ingredients in the bowl at the other and wait for them to balance. There’s no need for a battery and they’re easy to use, but on the downside, they’re not precise and it can be difficult to accurately measure smaller amounts.

Mechanical scales – which are far more common – work with a spring which moves the dial to reflect the weight of the ingredients. There are some fabulous retro designs and the weight capacity is often higher than other scales. There’s no need for batteries either, although as the spring wears out, the accuracy can decrease and they can be iffy when it comes to measuring tiny amounts.

Then there’s the most popular – digital scales – which use LCD displays. They are often very compact and are extremely precise in measuring, including small amounts – and you can switch between different measurements too. But there’s often limited weight capacity and they do rely on batteries.

When buying yours, think about whether you want to let them to sit out on the worktop or store them away. Is the bowl big enough? And if it doesn’t come with its own bowl, will it fit your own, especially if you like using larger vessels? Is the display easy to see? Is there a low-battery warning? Is the capacity enough for your needs? Does it have the tare function (that is, being able to reset it to zero so you can add more ingredients)? And do you need it to weigh wet ingredients, as well as dry?

Here you’ll find a list of best kitchen scales out there, with individual characteristics that make them stand out for whatever reason. Might we also say how incredibly sleek scales these days look? We can’t help but wonder whether we’d have hologram scales 100 years from now. Most probably.

Here are a few factors to consider before buying a kitchen scale:

  • Measurement conversion: Ensure that the kitchen scale you buy will enable to convert from metric to us with ease.
  • Maintenance: you should get a kitchen scale which will be easy to clean up. Hygiene standards should always be upheld in the kitchen.
  • Functionality features: Some kitchen scales come with specially added features. The features may add on to its accuracy levels among other things.
  • Weight capacity: when buying a kitchen scale consider the size of your household. If for commercial purposes, also make sure it can handle your business’ needs.

  • This top-selling stainless steel scale from Etekcity can measure up to 11 pounds (or 5 kilograms), making it one of the largest capacity scales on the market. Of course, it is also precise enough to measure just a few grams at a time as well.

    The brushed silver finish looks much sleeker than its price tag would suggest. And at just 7 by 5.5 inches, it can easily be stashed away in a cabinet without hogging too much space.

    The scale has an auto-shutoff feature that helps conserve the AAA batteries, but some reviewers have noted that the scale turns off too quickly. The scale comes with a one-year limited warranty as well.

  • Runner-Up, Best Overall: Ozeri Pronto Digital Multifunction Kitchen Scale

    With all the precision of our top pick, this scale from Ozeri is much more versatile in terms of aesthetics. Available in seven color options, including black, white, red, teal, and silver, you’re sure to find one that matches your kitchen décor.

    The streamlined scale has just two function buttons, one that turns it on and resets the scale to zero—helpful for ingredients that need to be weighed in a bowl or plastic container, and the other that switches the measurements between pounds and ounces and kilograms and grams.

    Like the Etekcity model, this scale can weigh ingredients up to 11 pounds, and requires two AAA batteries, which are included with your purchase. The scale also comes with a one-year “no-hassle” warranty.

  • Best Budget: AmazonBasics Digital Kitchen Scale

    Not everyone needs a fancy, expensive scale. This budget friendly model has many of the same features as more expensive scales, including a wide LCD screen that’s easy to read. It can weigh up to 11 pounds in one-gram or 1/8 ounce increments.

    The scale displays your choice US or metric measurements with the push of a button, and it has a tare button to zero the weight to continue adding ingredients. Automatic shutoff turns the scale off if it hasn’t been used for 2 minutes and 15 seconds, or it can be turned off manually.

    The compact size doesn’t take a lot of space on the counter or in a cabinet, and two AAA batteries are included so you can started weighing your baking ingredients as soon as the scale arrives.

  • Best App-Enabled: Wireless Perfect Bake Pro Smart Kitchen Scale

    All of our appliances are getting smarter, including kitchen scales. This one comes with an app that links with the scale and walks you through assembling your baking recipes. It’s simple to modify the recipes to make smaller or larger batches or to use up the rest of that container of buttermilk that you don’t need.

    The app can suggest recipes based on what you have on hand. As you weigh, the bowl graphic in the app will let you show you how close you are to the desired measurement, making iteasier to add just the right amount of each ingredient.

    This scale doesn’t require the app to operate, so you can use it just like a standard kitchen scale to weigh ingredients for any recipes. It also includes a timer, making it even more useful. The scale is accurate to .1 grams (.0035 ounces), which is much more accurate than most you’ll find. It can weigh up to 12 pounds (6 kg).

    Perfect Bake includes the scale, 3 color-coded bowls, an oven thermometer and a stand for your phone or tablet. This requires 3 AA batteries, which are not included. The app needs to be downloaded, but it is free.

    Perfect Drink and Perfect Blend scale/app products are also available if baking isn’t for you, and you can also download and use any of the apps at no cost and use them with any of the Perfect scales.

    AmazonBasics Kitchen Scale

    AmazonBasics outdid themselves on this one – literally speaking. Even though it isn’t the prettiest unit out there, it is undoubtedly one of the best kitchen scales if you want spotless operation. With a smudge-proof stainless-steel surface, this little workhorse will stay free of fingerprints to maintain a clean look all the time. You can place up to 5000 grams of ingredients on it, and keep track of readouts through its wide LCD screen.

    The AmazonBasics is super fast too, thanks to the advanced sensor technology that delivers fast, accurate results. It is worth noting, however, that this scale will only display readings in pounds, grams and ounces. What’s more? This baby measures 8.7×7.1×1.6 inches to save your countertop space. And when you’re not using it, simply tuck it away in your cupboard or pantry.

    The AmazonBasics runs on battery power but it will shut off automatically in about two minutes. Or, you can shut it off manually by pressing the Tare/Power button for three seconds. Those who’ve this scale term it as an “excellent, simple unit” and we couldn’t agree more.

  • Best Analog: Taylor Precision Stainless Steel Kitchen Scale

    If you prefer a retro-style scale or don’t want to have to constantly replace the batteries in a digital scale, this analog version from Taylor might be the right choice for you. The gleaming stainless steel bowl on this model is removable for easy filling and cleaning, and the red and cream dial makes a distinct design statement.

    The scale measures up to 11 pounds and also shows the gram equivalents on the interior of the dial. To tare this model, like most analog scales, you’ll have to adjust the dial underneath the measuring bowl, which means it might not be as accurate as a digital scale due to human error. But once you get it correctly calibrated, it is very accurate.

    Of course, the major drawback to this model is that it will take up a significant amount of counter space. The scale’s footprint measures roughly 8 by 9 inches, so make sure you have enough room in your kitchen to store it. And the good news is you won’t have to worry about dead batteries or a busted display.

  • Best Hanging Scale: American Weigh Scale Digital Hanging Scale

    Small countertop kitchen scales are great for weighing ingredients for baking a few loaves of bread, but folks who want to weigh large amounts of meat for smoking, or other heavy or bulky ingredients that exceed the capacity of smaller scales, will appreciate this hanging scale. It can handle the weight without taking a lot of space.

    It’s made of rugged die-cast metal and has a built-in tape measure, so you can tuck it in your pocket to take on a fishing trip to immortalize the size and weight of your prize fish.

    This can weigh up to 110 pounds, with a 100-gram (3.5 ounces) minimum, and it can weigh in pounds, kilograms ​and ounces. It is accurate to within one ounce.

    American Weigh Scales AWS-600-BLK

    A good on-the-go food scale, the AWS-600-BLK is portable and handy. It will accommodate 600 grams of weight and even has a flip-open lid to protect the delicate weighing surface. American Weigh Scales, the makers of this model understand travel measuring needs.

    Other than the standard ounce and gram modes, they’ve equipped this scale with tarring, troy and pennyweights modes. That way, you can use it to weigh up other bits and pieces during your travels. Think of it as a small, all-inclusive scale that can fit into your pocket.

    The AWS-600-BLK has three buttons below the bright LCD screen so you can move back and forth between measuring modes easy. The weighing platform, though small, features a stainless steel construction for painless cleaning. And, you don’t have to worry about accidental battery drains. This unit will warn you in advance when it’s time change the batteries not to mention that it will switch off on its own after a few seconds of idle time.

  • Best Dual Scale: Smart Weigh Culinary Kitchen Scale

    Scales that can handle a lot of weight are less accurate, while very accurate scales can’t handle a lot of weight. Why choose one or the other when this scale combines both? It has two separate stainless steel platforms that can be wiped clean easily, and it weighs in grams, kilograms, ounces and pounds. Both scales can be used at the same time with separate readouts, and it can display the combined weight, as well.

    The larger platform can have an accuracy of 1 gram and weighs up to 22 pounds while the smaller platform has an accuracy of .01 gram and can weigh up to 10.5 ounces. It comes with a calibration weight, so you can adjust it, if necessary.

    BUYER’S GUIDE

    A kitchen scale is an essential tool you’d probably didn’t think about until you’re getting ready to measure everything out and realize there are more accurate ways. However, once you’ve purchased one and used it, you’re likely never want to go without one again.

    The issue is, there are many different types of scales; some may be right for your cooking projects while others may not be such a great fit. So, here we will explore the different types of kitchen scales available and what they are used for.

    Types of Kitchen Scale

    Coffee Scale

    It may seem a little silly buying a food scale just to weight out some coffee, but for the true coffee lovers, this food scale is a treasure. Not only does it precisely give you measured grounds, but it also has a bloom and brew timer installed into the scale. This will help you achieve that perfect cup of coffee every time.

    Large Kitchen Scales

    Sometimes you’ll need a bigger scale that can measure more than a few lbs. of weight. A larger kitchen scale will come in handy for those times. This is especially true if you work in the restaurant business and you’re expected to produce large quantities or portions of food. These scales have large surface areas and an increased maximum capacity limit, though you’ll have to check on the brand for the limits.

    Multipurpose Scale

    A multipurpose scale can come in handy if you’re looking for a simplistic scale that can do almost everything. These scales are designed to have a little bit of every feature and work for general uses in the kitchen. Don’t expect too much out of them, but they will help cover your basic needs.

    Healthy Portion Scale

    Healthy portion scales do exist and they’re a lot smaller than you would have thought. These food scales are designed to be super small and can fit into your lunch bag or kept in areas with limited space.

    Aesthetically Pleasing Scale

    I know it also may sound silly, but there are people out there who want a stylish matching scale. There are scales that are designed specifically to match your other kitchenware. Look for scales that offer you all the same benefits you’d want on a normal scale, but also offer you the aesthetics you’re after.

    Capacity

    The maximum capacity on a scale will be highly depended on its design, make, and model. If you’re looking for smaller ones, they will likely only weigh a few lbs. of food. Large ones will hold up to around 11 lbs. or more, but it really depends on the model. If you happen to need a larger scale, you will have to do further research, or perhaps look for an industrial or commercial model.

    Weighing Platform

    The weight platforms of each model are also going to be very different depending on what the scale was designed to be used for. If you’re using a kitchen scale, your scale will likely have either tempered glass or be made of stainless steel. This helps the unit stay safe and secure and have no risk of any damage.

    Tare and Continuous Weighing

    Tare is where the unit will zero out whatever weight is already on the scale. This comes in handy when you’re baking because you can put everything in one bowl and keep zeroing out the weight while measuring the next ingredient.

    Accuracy

    The accuracy of most food scales will usually be very precise and almost perfect every time. The only issue is that cheaper brands don’t always function with a high degree of accuracy. At most the scale may be off by ± 1-2 grams, which won’t impact your baking if you only need a bit of an ingredient, But, if it’s highly important to the baked good, then you may have an issue.

    Design and Ease of Storage

    Many scales on the market today are geared towards saving space. There are still some that are bulky and will have to sit out on your counter for storage. You can specifically find scales that are created to be ultra-thin or very compact. These will help you if you are constricted on space.

    Buttons and Display Options

    There will usually be around 2-3 buttons on each unit. One will let you display the different measuring units. Another will zero/tare out whatever weight is on the machine. One will be for shutting or turning the unit on or off.

    F.A.Q.

    If you’re new to learning how to use a kitchen scale, here are a few different aspects that you should be aware of before actually using one for the first time.

    What is a kitchen scale used for?

    Kitchen scales can be used for a variety of different tasks. They don’t always have to be limited to the kitchen. You can use them with crafts and any other projects if the objects you measure do not exceed the maximum weight limit on the scale.

    The most basic use of a food scale is for measuring out ingredients while following a recipe. By doing this, you get super accurate measurements which help your food taste that much better. When baking, if you don’t measure accurately, you’re going to end up with a bad product that doesn’t even resemble what you were going for. Using a kitchen scale, you no longer have to be scared of uneven measurements with your dry or wet ingredients.

    How do you use a food scale to count calories?

    If you’re on a health journey and you’ve purchased a food scale to help you more accurately track your food, then you’re in luck. It’s really easy to use a kitchen food scale to track calories; you just need to be aware of a few different factors.

    First of all, you’ll need to buy containers to help in portion control of what you’re eating. Weighing out your food into individual containers is so much easier than just having to weigh food every time you go to make a meal.

    Secondly, you’ll need to understand how food conversions work. Depending on where you live, when you purchase a food item the serving size will either be given to you in ounces, grams or some other measurement. You will have to change the measuring unit on your scale and then weigh it out. If you don’t you could risk inaccurately tracking the calories in your meal.

    Thirdly, you need to be aware that weighing liquids and solid foods will be partially different. Some scales come with a function to choose how to measure and it will use different measurement units. Often times you will weigh out liquids in ounces, etc.

    How do you read a food scale?

    To read a food scale, simply look at the screen and check which type of measurement unit you are using. Sometimes you will have to do extra conversions, especially if you’re measuring in a unit that isn’t programmed onto the scale. However, these situations are very rare.

    What does tare mean on a scale?

    Taring is also known as “zeroing out,” which means that you put food or a container on the scale and press the tare button; the scale will automatically reset the weight back to 0. You then can put food or other ingredients into the bowl or on the scale and use the tare functions as many times as you’d like.

    That way you can easily continuously measure what you’re putting into your container without actually having to use a different bowl.

    How accurate are digital scales?

    The accuracy of digital scales is going to be much better than traditional scales that you see on the market. However, when you compare digital scales to each other, not all are as accurate as others. Some may be very accurate and give you readings from less than ± .02 gram error while other scales can literally be off by ± 2-6 grams.​

    It all depends on the quality of the scale you buy and if it’s durable and can last many uses, as some are known to malfunction after extended use.

    FINAL VERDICT

    As you can see, a kitchen scale can be a vital aspect of any kitchen. You can use it for many applications; whether you’re looking to track food, bake, cook, etc., a kitchen scale can help you measure better.

    The best kitchen scale we can recommend to you is Etekcity Digital Kitchen Scale because it’s responsibly priced, has the most features for multiple uses, and is easy to store away.

    We hope that this guide has helped educate you on the aspects of kitchen scales. Remember that there are scales made for specific needs, so if you’re looking for one for baking, meal prep, etc., then you can find one to fit your needs.

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