How to Use a Food Scale for Calorie Counting?

We all know that we can whip out our food scales when we want to measure the perfect amount of ingredients to bake a moist cake or crispy cookies. But, did you know that you can also use this kitchen gadget to shed those extra pounds that have made their way on your body? A good food scale will work wonders for your diet regime. You just need to know how to accommodate it into your weight loss journey. Calorie deficit is key for this, the next question is: how to use a food scale for calorie counting?

Why do you need a food scale?

In a perfect world, we would eat to our heart’s content and not look like a potato. But sadly, the reality is far from it. By eyeballing the calories that we intake, we are putting our weight loss journey at risk. So, you can use a food scale to measure the accurate number of calories that you would be consuming. You can do this by placing the food item on top of the scale and noting down the weight in grams or ounces. Then, multiply this by the number of calories in 1 gram/ounce of that food or ingredient. This way you will get the number of calories in the food you are willing to eat. 

Counting Calories with Food Scales 101

A study revealed that many processed foods show a lesser calorie count on their labels than the actual amount. This is why you need a food scale to measure the precise amount of calories you intake so that you can be sure that you are well within the prescribed calorie amount for your diet plan. To use a food scale accurately, here is what you need to do:

  • You first need to ensure that it is placed on a flat surface.  
  • Wait for a few seconds
  • Place the food item on top of the scale and note down the reading. Note in which unit you are measuring your food so that it is easier to count your calories. A rule of the thumb is that 1ounce = 28 grams. 

Common Calorie Counting Problems

Do not be discouraged if you feel like measuring calories using a food scale is getting you nowhere. Chances are that you won’t start seeing the results immediately. However, by eliminating some common mistakes made by beginners, you can get right back to your weight loss program using calorie counting. 

  • Each one of us has a distinctive body. So something that works for someone else might not necessarily work for you. Strike a balance between underfeeding yourself and overfeeding yourself to attain the best results.
  • Many factors such as genetics, age, and the amount of stress that you have in your life also determine how many calories your body will burn on a day-to-day basis.
  • Opt for less processed foods. Instead of going for a diet soda, choose water to quench your thirst. 

How Can Food Scales Help you?

Food scales can become your sidekick when you are on your way to fight off the excess fat. Here is how they do it:

  • They help you adopt a healthy eating lifestyle: When you eat by measuring your calories, then you become accustomed to eating a certain amount of healthy food every day. This way you won’t fall into the clutches of overfeeding your body with extra calories.
  • They help you become aware of what you are putting in your body: When you start to portion control your meals, then you will have a better understanding of how many calories there are in all the things that you love to eat. Even a small bowl of cereal can have as many as 500 calories in it. This will help you in being in better control over your body and what goes in it. You can read more on How to weigh food for macros here.

Recommended Food Scales for Calorie Counting

Now that we have established how food scales can transform your diet plan for the better, it is time to check out some of the recommended food scales for calorie counting:

OXO Good Grips Food Scale


  • It is user-friendly and has only two buttons. One is the power button that can also be used as a zero purpose. The other one is for selecting the measuring unit, such as grams, kilograms, and ounces. 
  • It is precise, easy to clean, and can weigh foods up to 11 pounds.


  • You might face some difficulty when measuring your food in grams.
  • It shows the measurements in decimals instead of fractions (for those who prefer fractions).

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Amazon Basics Digital Kitchen Scale


  • It can measure a minimum of 2 grams to a maximum of 11 pounds of food. At the same time, it features a tare button that deducts the container weight to zero, ultimately giving an accurate measurement.
  • This scale sports an angled screen that makes it easier to take the reading even when weighing large food items.


  • It times out after two minutes.
  • It might be difficult to clean up as the metal plate isn’t detachable.

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Easy@Home Digital Food Kitchen Scale


  • This scale allows you to record the carbs, calories, proteins, fats, cholesterol, and sodium to aid you in keeping up with your healthy lifestyle.
  • It has a commercial tare function. 
  • It has a diary track function and a memory mode to keep track of your nutrient intake. Besides this, it also has an app that shows the calorie content of the food present on the scale.


  • The app could work better. 
  • It has a limited database of food items. 

Click here to read more about this product.

Frequently Asked Questions

For which foods and ingredients should I use my food scale to count calories?

Food scales can generally be used for all sorts of food but they are best used for portioning meat after it is cooked to monitor the calories.

How do I choose the right food scale for calorie counting?

To pick out the right food scale for yourself, here are a few things to keep in your mind:

  • Check to see if the food scale you have your eyes on, is in your budget
  • See if it is easy to read, use, and clean.
  • Can hold the amount of food that you need to weigh.

What can I do if I’m struggling to lose weight?

There are many reasons why you might be facing difficulty in losing weight. It is best to consult a dietitian or a nutritionist who can better guide you regarding your body’s needs. In the meantime, you can try adjusting your lifestyle by eating a healthy breakfast, getting enough sleep, and exercising moderately. 


Embarking on a weight-loss journey is not as easy as it sounds. It requires immense patience and perseverance to stick to the diet plan and exercise regularly. But, you can make your life a bit easier by opting for a food scale to plan your calorie intake. Remember, a healthy body makes way for a healthy mind!