4 Best Kitchen Scales, Tested by Food Network Kitchen
For the most accurate measurements, you need a top-notch digital kitchen scale.
Our Top Kitchen Scale Picks:
Tested by Stevie Stewart for Food Network Kitchen
When it comes to accuracy in the kitchen, there is nothing more essential than a kitchen scale. Whether you are a skilled professional or an avid home cook, a scale is one of the most important tools to help you achieve success. A set of measuring cups will serve you well, but these measurements can vary greatly: How hard did you pack the brown sugar? Did you level the cup of flour? Was the flour aerated or packed? The only way to know that your measurements are the same every single time time is to use a kitchen scale. We tested 10 different digital scales to find which are best for all kinds of cooking projects.
What To Know About Kitchen Scales
Accuracy is key. If your kitchen scale is not 100% accurate, your finished product won't be either. Calibrate your kitchen scale the same way we tested ours: with a stack of nickels. Four nickels should weight exactly 20 g. A digital scale will give you the highest level of accuracy.
Versatility is important. While the most important feature to a scale is accuracy, it is not the only attribute we wanted to keep in mind when choosing our favorites. We were looking for scales that could weigh both small and larger amounts. All the scales we tested could weigh up to at least 11 pounds.
Don't forget cleanup and storage. We also chose our top kitchen scales based on which were easy to clean, easy to store (all of the scales we tested were less than 2 inches thick) and user friendly. We eliminated scales that were inaccurate, unstable and bulky.
The Escali scale was one of the most accurate of those we tested, maintaining a steady, exact read no matter where an object was placed on the surface. The design is simple with just two buttons (On/Tare/Off and g/oz) and a circular platform that can hold small to large containers. Made of hard plastic, it is durable and sturdy, leaving no worry of cracking or scratching while using or cleaning. This scale was also easily cleaned by hand with a wet towel without leaving prints, grease or spots behind. Another bonus feature? An auto shut off after a full 4 minutes without us, so feel free to go in the fridge and grab some more ingredients without worrying that your reading will be lost as you walk away. The Escali Primo Digital scale is a dependable tool that is appropriate for the professional to the home cook. This scale is also used in the Food Network test kitchens.
If you are looking for something sturdy and dependable, like the Escali, with a smaller price tag, the Ozeri is it. Priced at $14.99 it is less than the Escali and equally as accurate. Very similar in design, the Ozeri holds up to nearly all that the Escali does. The difference between the two? The Ozeri has a shorter auto shut off time and a detachable weighing platform that can be a bonus for cleaning but is a bit tricky to replace after removing.
The Greater Goods scale had one of the smallest profiles of the 10 scales we tested but was equally as accurate as some of our top picks. Measuring just ⅜ of an inch thick (1/2 an inch with feet) and just over 9 inches in length, it could fit in any size kitchen. Despite its small size, it can still weigh up to 11 lbs like most of the larger scales we tested. It measured accurately each time, was stable, easy to clean and easy to operate. As a company, GreaterGoods places importance on responsible manufacturing and also contributes some of their profits to charities.
One of the drawbacks of most digital scales is visibility. If you are measuring in a large bowl or plate, it may eclipse the screen, preventing you from seeing the weight clearly. The OXO Good Grips scale has a pull-out display which solves this problem. The display is connected with a flexible cord which allows you to pull away and maneuver the screen so you can see it clearly away from the measuring vessel. This scale had the longest auto shut off time of 30 minutes (it switches to standby mode and retains memory after 6 minutes). Although one of the larger and heavier of the scales we tested, if you are working with larger-scale recipes in need of larger measuring vessels, this scale would be the one for you!
How We Tested
Accuracy: To test the accuracy of each scale, we first stacked and weighed 4 nickels. Every nickel weighs exactly 5 grams so we knew that the result should be 20 grams for each test. We then placed the nickels in different places around the surface of the scale to see if the measurement would remain accurate no matter where an item was placed. Use this method to calibrate your scale before first use.
Cleaning: To see how easy each was to clean, we mixed together flour and oil, spread the surface of each scale and allowed the mixture to set for 20 minutes. We then used a wet towel to clean by hand.
User-Friendliness: We also noted how stable the scales were when something was placed on top, measured and weighed each scale and also took into account the materials with which each was made.