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Whether you’re creating delicious baked goods or dividing up portions for meal prep, kitchen scales are essential for accurate measurements. Not to mention, using a scale can also help you cut down on dishes because you can do all of your measuring in one bowl, taring the scale between ingredient additions. The choices run the gamut from old-school analog scales to smart scales where an app can easily give you your macros to everything in between. Some offer enhanced displays and removable platforms.
Here, our list of the best kitchen scales to fit your lifestyle.
Best Overall: Etekcity Digital Multifunction Stainless Steel Kitchen Food Scale
With its brushed silver finish and backlit screen, Etekcity’s top-selling stainless steel scale looks much more high-end than its price tag would suggest. It can measure up to 11 pounds (or 5 kilograms), but is accurate enough to weigh just a few ounces, grams, fluid ounces, or milliliters.
At just 7 x 5.5 inches and less than an inch thick, it’s compact enough to be stashed away in a drawer or cabinet. The flat surface and laminated buttons also make it incredibly easy to clean. Some reviewers note that the small size does make the LCD screen hard to read when measuring with larger bowls or plates.
The scale’s auto-shutoff feature helps conserve the included AAA batteries and it comes with a one-year limited warranty.
Runner-Up, Best Overall: Ozeri Pronto Digital Multifunction Kitchen Scale
As precise as our top pick—and what you’ll find in my cabinet—this Ozeri scale's main feature is the large round weighing platform. Available in six color options, which include black, red, teal, and silver, it’s perfect for matching your other kitchen appliances.
Like many streamlined scales, it comes with two function buttons. The power button also resets the scale to zero, which is helpful for ingredients that need to be weighed in a container. The other changes the preferred measurement unit to either pounds, ounces, milliliters, or grams.
This scale can weigh ingredients up to 11.24 pounds and requires two AAA batteries, which are included with your purchase. It also comes with a one-year warranty.
Best Budget: AmazonBasics Stainless Steel Digital Kitchen Scale with LCD Display
If you just need a dependable tool without all the bells and whistles, this AmazonBasics scale checks all the boxes. The budget-friendly model has many of the same features as pricier ones, which includes an easy-to-read LCD screen and sensors for accurate measurements. Its wide circular platform can handle up to 11 pounds.
Similar to the Ozeri model, this scale features a large weighing platform that’s easy to wipe clean. It weighs ingredients in both ounces and grams and has a tare function to reset the weight. It also features automatic shutoff programmed for about 2 minutes of inactivity.
At approximately 8 x 7 inches, this scale doesn’t take a lot of space, and two AAA batteries are included. Despite the price, reviewers find the scale to be accurate and reliable.
Best App-Enabled: Etekcity Food Kitchen Scale Smart Nutrition Scale
There’s an app for every home appliance now. In addition to simple weight measurement, this Bluetooth-enabled smart scale from Etekcity can give you up to eight different nutrition stats, including calories, total fat, total carbohydrates, and protein.
The flat stainless-steel platform can measure up to 11 pounds in ounces, grams, and milliliters. The large backlit LCD screen can display all your macros once connected with VeSyncFit, the scale’s free app, which also syncs with Apple Health and FitBit. The app comes in handy for anyone who needs to track their meals over time.
Unlike most kitchen scales, this model has an adjustable auto-shutoff feature to help conserve the AAA batteries, which are included with purchase. It also comes with a one-year warranty.
Best Analog: Taylor Precision Products Stainless Steel Analog Kitchen Scale
This analog kitchen scale from Taylor is for those who want a classic scale that doesn’t need batteries. The scale’s removable stainless-steel, 5-cup bowl makes for easy measuring and cleaning, while a black and white dial completes the retro look.
The scale can handle up to 11 pounds, and the large 5-inch display measures in both ounces and grams. Like with most traditional scales, you have to tare it using the dial underneath the measuring bowl, so it might not be as accurate as a digital scale.
With a footprint that measures approximately 8 x 9 inches, this brushed stainless-steel scale will need a decent amount of your kitchen countertop. But the good news is it comes with a one-year limited warranty.
Best Baking: My Weigh Bakers Math Kitchen Scale
Most kitchen scales are ideal for small baking projects, but any baker who needs to weigh out ingredients for multiple batches at once will benefit from this model by My Weigh. Its biggest advantage is that it allows you to weigh items by percentage, essentially doing your baker’s math for you.
The impressive scale measures up to 17 pounds, 9 ounces (or 8 kilograms), and comes with a removable stainless-steel platform. It also has an adjustable backlit LCD display, which has a removable cover to protect it from messes. There is a programmable auto-shutoff feature.
A major drawback is the scale’s size. At approximately 10 x 7.5 inches and weighing 2.5 pounds, it will need allotted counter space. It does come with three AA batteries, with an AC adapter that is sold separately.
Best Pocket Scale: Weigh Gram Digital Pocket Scale
Pocket scales are perfect for when you need to measure minute amounts of ingredients like herbs, spices, or coffee. This durable, compact scale gives accurate measurements to the 0.01 gram but is lightweight enough to carry with you.
About 5 x 3 inches, the stainless-steel platform measures up to 100 grams and features a protective cover with instructions on the interior. There are three function buttons, one to power the scale on and off, one to change measuring units, and the third for resetting the weight.
The scale is programmed with a 60-second automatic shutoff feature to conserve the two AAA batteries, which are not included.
Best Hanging Scale: American Weigh Scale H Series Digital Multifunction Electronic Hanging Scale, Black
Hanging scales are for when you need to weigh a large amount of meat, a whole fish, or any other heavy or bulky ingredients. This model from American Weigh Scales can handle your needs without requiring a lot of storage space.
Made of rugged die-cast metal and containing a built-in 3-foot tape measure, this portable scale can weigh up to 110 pounds, with a 100-gram (3.5 ounces) minimum, in pounds, ounces, and kilograms.
The scale’s wide handle and backlit LCD screen make weighing easy. It also comes with two CR2032 batteries and is backed by a 10-year limited warranty.
The Etekcity Digital Multifunction Stainless Steel Kitchen Food Scale gets the top spot because it's accurate, easy to use, lightweight, and best of all, affordable. Think batteries are a hassle? Go for the Taylor Precision Products Stainless Steel Analog Kitchen Scale. This analog model features an easy-to-read display and classic design.
What to Look for When Buying Kitchen Scales
By Sara Tane
Arguably the most important characteristic of any kitchen scale is its accuracy. If it's not reading accurate measurements, then it’s not doing its primary job. Even though a milligram of difference may not make a huge impact when you’re measuring flour or coffee grounds, if the scale is off by even a gram, this can start to affect whatever it is that you’re making. While some scales offer recalibration options, this is not common, and oftentimes the recalibration is not super accurate. In order to preserve the accuracy of your scale, make sure not to put any items on the scale that are heavier than what it can measure, and always replace the battery if you notice that measurements start to become inconsistent. Some scales come with 1- to 5-year warranties, which is great on the off chance that you find that your scale starts to come up with inaccurate readings. Keep in mind that a lot of warranties will not cover you if the cause of the broken scale is due to overloading it with an extremely heavy item.
Units of Measure
Not all scales have the same reading capabilities, so definitely look for a scale that can measure in both metric and imperial units. Additionally, it is more precise when a scale reads in decimal points versus fractions because decimal numbers are more specific. It’s also worth noting that some scales will translate a heavier weight to 2 pounds and 4 ounces versus 36 ounces, for example. In the same vein of units of measure, you should also take note of the weight range that a scale can read. Most scales commonly weigh in increments of 1 gram or 0.05 ounce. Anything with increments larger than this can result in inaccurate readings.
Weight Capacity Range
As far as the capacity range, most kitchen scales can support anywhere from 6 pounds to 12 pounds, depending on the model that you choose. If you will be weighing lots of dry ingredients for large baking projects, make sure that the scale you’re using can support such measurements. Most kitchen scales offer a tare button, but some models combine the tare and on/off features into one button, which can sometimes lead to accidentally powering off the scale when trying to tare the weight. If you need to measure larger cuts of proteins that might not sit easily on a countertop scale, opting for a hanging scale is a great way to grab the accurate weight of these products. Similarly, if you’re going to be measuring extremely small quantities of food like spices or baking ingredients, then having a pocket scale handy is a great way to grab these measurements, because measurements less than a gram do not read as accurately on a basic kitchen scale.
Like anything that you’re going to purchase for your kitchen, the price varies greatly. A new kitchen scale can run you anywhere from $10 to $60, so knowing what you’re looking for is crucial. If you’ve never owned a scale before and want to dabble with baking by measurements or portioning out your weekly meal prep, then a cheaper, more basic scale will certainly do the trick. If you’re going to be measuring large batches of food for big groups, large occasions, or more professional cooking settings, then opting for a scale with a large weight range and improved accuracy will definitely be worth the extra investment.
Types of Kitchen Scales
This is the most common type of kitchen scale and will be the most useful for the average home cook. These scales can typically weigh items anywhere from half of an ounce to 6 to 12 pounds. They are battery-powered (which means you will need to replace the batteries eventually) and can read in 0.05-ounce or 1-gram increments. They offer taring capabilities and are relatively compact and lightweight. Most models can produce a reading in less than a second, or sometimes a few. They operate best when they are securely sitting on a flat, level countertop. Some digital scales might feature a glass platform, which may seem cool and chic at first; however, these models are extremely fragile and oftentimes prove difficult to clean and maintain. A good digital scale will also come with rubber feet on the bottom, which should prevent the scale from moving around on the counter while you’re using it. Usually, digital scales are available in a wide variety of colors if you’re looking for a fun pop of color while you bake.
A somewhat outdated version, analog scales do not require any battery power. Instead, these classic scales have a large base and a bowl or surface on top to place the item that you are wanting to weigh. They are much larger in size and heavier than a classic digital scale, so plan to make room in your cupboard for this model. Rather than a digital display, the weight is presented on an analog reading. While you might find an analog model that can support more weight than a digital model, there is no real advantage to weighing items with an analog scale versus digital. They do have a fun, vintage aesthetic if you are wanting to keep it on your counter as a way to subtly decorate your kitchen and fill the space.
If you are going to be measuring smaller items, like spices, coffee, or baking ingredients, it may be a good idea to look into a pocket scale. These small, lightweight tools are a great way to get a precise measurement for something that weighs less than 1 gram or 0.05 ounces. This scale is battery-powered and can read in both metric and imperial units. If you’re not going to be measuring very tiny amounts of an ingredient, then there is no need for you to buy a scale of this caliber. It is extremely compact and affordable, so even if you don’t get a ton of use out of it, it’s not a huge burden to purchase and store.
Lastly, a hanging scale is another way to get an accurate reading, specifically for a large cut of protein or any large item that is awkwardly shaped and may not fit on a countertop scale. Compeared with a digital kitchen scale, which typically cannot support more than 12 pounds, a hanging scale can read upwards of 100 pounds (and it can also read in metric units). Keep in mind that this is going to be a very large piece of meat or a whole fish. Most home cooks aren’t braising a protein larger than 12 pounds, but if you are, then this is the scale for you. It is battery-powered and can easily hook onto whatever you’re measuring. Not to mention, you can also use this scale when you are packing for your next trip and want to make sure that your suitcase is less than 50 pounds!
Known for accuracy, reliability, and speediness, you can’t go wrong with an Ozeri digital kitchen scale. Warranties are available for these battery-powered scales, which come in a variety of fun colors. At a very approachable price, this is a great introductory scale for the average home cook.
If you’re looking for a small pocket scale, look for a Weigh Gram scale. These are the culinary standard for small, precise measurements, something that any baker may need for spices, herbs, and coffee.
If you’re looking for a reliable analog scale, Taylor Precision makes a sturdy, stainless steel one. While it may take up a good amount of kitchen space, the scale can usually read up to 11 pounds in a large 5-cup bowl. One-year warranties are available.
If you like to weigh items by percentages or ratios, then look for a My Weigh scale. Any experienced baker could benefit greatly from this tool because it can do the math for you if you are wanting to scale a recipe up or down. While it does take up a good amount of space and is fairly heavy, it’s certainly a great addition to your kitchen if the percentage feature is one that you will use.
Never load a scale over its weight capacity because this can cause the calibration to be off and even break the scale. Don’t weigh messy, wet items directly on a scale; instead, lay a piece of parchment or plastic wrap down for easier cleanup. When the scale is off, do not store it or let it sit with items on it, because this can also cause great damage. While some scales have recalibration capabilities, these are often not very accurate, so don’t rely on them. If you think your scale may be giving you inaccurate readings, it’s likely time to replace the batteries. Always keep your scale on a firm, flat surface for the most accurate readings. When the scale is off, wipe the buttons and the platform down with a hot washcloth to clean up any remaining food particles or grease. Never place a scale directly under running water to clean.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
Siobhan Wallace has been writing about food, including two cookbooks, for over a decade, in addition to doing a stint as a baker. Her collection of food gadgets includes quite a few duds.