When a recipe calls for X cooked amount of something is that before or after it has been cooked


I think I know the answer to this and realize that it is similar to this question about nuts, but I wanted to verify my instinct. When a recipe calls for 1 ½ cups cooked X, is that recipe calling for that ingredient measured before or after cooking?

Best Answer

Recipe-speak is very particular about order.

  • half a cup of butter, melted means you measure the solid butter (probably with a butter ruler) and then melt it
  • half a cup of melted butter means you melt some larger amount of butter and then measure (probably with a liquid measure)

Obviously there's no difference between 3 carrots, roasted and 3 roasted carrots. Nor between 2 eggs, hardboiled and sliced and 2 hardboiled sliced eggs. And in many cases the volume of things isn't much affected by cooking. In some cases it is easier to measure before or afterwards, and the recipe-writer wants to point you in the easier way. But in some it really matters. Rice, for example. 1 cup of raw rice yields roughly 3 cups cooked, so recipe writers need to be super clear which you are measuring.

In your example, 1.5 cups cooked X, you cook it and then measure it.