Culinary Arts

How Many Teaspoons in a Tablespoon? Measurement Conversion Chart

Written by MasterClass

Feb 14, 2019 • 1 min read

Tablespoons and teaspoons are units of volume that are handy for measuring smaller amounts of ingredients, such as spices, that wouldn’t be practical to weigh on a scale and are too small to measure in cups. They’re essential to the culinary arts, used in both the metric and Imperial systems.


How Many Teaspoons in a Tablespoon?

When working with a limited set of measuring spoons or scaling your favorite recipes up or down, memorizing this kitchen fact will save time: 1 tablespoon equals 3 teaspoons.

For everything else, use this list of measurement conversions.

  • How many teaspoons in a tablespoon? 1 U.S. tablespoon = 3 U.S. teaspoons
  • How many teaspoons in a ½ tablespoon? ½ U.S. tablespoon = 1½ U.S. teaspoons
  • How many ¼ teaspoons in a tablespoon? 1 U.S. tablespoon = 12 U.S. ¼ teaspoons
  • How many teaspoons in 3 tablespoons? 3 U.S. tablespoons = 9 U.S. teaspoons
  • How many tablespoons in a ¼ cup? ¼ U.S. cup = 4 tablespoons

What’s the Difference Between Imperial and Metric Measuring Spoons?

Teaspoons and tablespoons are used in the United States and around the world, but they’re not exactly the same. The U.S., Liberia, and Myanmar use the Imperial system while the rest of the world uses the metric system.

  • In the Imperial system, 1 tablespoon equals ½ fluid ounce (14.79 milliliters).
  • A metric tablespoon, however, equals exactly 15 milliliters.
  • Similarly, one U.S. teaspoon equals ⅙ fluid ounce (4.93 milliliters), just slightly less than the 5-milliliter metric teaspoon.

These differences in volume are small enough that American and metric measuring spoons can be easily interchanged without significantly altering a recipe.

What Is a Dessert Spoon?

A dessert spoon is a volume unit used in the U.K., Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. At 10 milliliters, it’s between a tablespoon and a teaspoon in size.

How Many Tablespoons are in a Stick of Butter?

In the U.S., a stick of butter is often 4 ounces (113.40 grams). One stick of butter equals 8 tablespoons. So, half a stick of butter equals 4 tablespoons.

What Does a Spoonful of Sugar Weigh?

Since tablespoons are a measure of volume, not mass, the weight of a spoonful of sugar depends on what kind of sugar you’re using. But in general, 1 tablespoon granulated sugar weighs about 12½ grams.