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Converting Bread Machine Recipe Sizes

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There are two ways to convert a bread machine recipe from one size to another. You can do it by hand or you can use recipe management software and let it do all the hard work for you. My recommendation is to use recipe management software. Not only is recipe size conversion a snap it makes keeping track of your recipes a snap as well.

Should you decide to use recipe management software and you have a PC I recommend MasterCook software from ValueSoft. MasterCook has a great interface is loaded with features and includes full recipe nutritional analysis as well.

Method 1: By Hand

Say you have a 1-1/2 pound recipe and you want to convert it to a 2-pound recipe. Or, you have a 1-pound recipe and you want to convert it to a 1-1/2 pound recipe, etc. This conversion is easy also. With a little bit of math, you can convert recipes of any size to any other size. We are only going to cover 1, 1-1/2, 2 and 2-1/2 pound recipes and how to convert them back and fourth.

The chart below tells you what formula to use to convert a recipe from one size to another. First choose the size of the recipe you have in the FROM column. Then select the size you want to convert it to in the TO row. Use this formula to convert the recipe.

TO
1
1-1/2
2
2-1/2
FROM
1

÷ by 2, X 3

Ex. 2 Cups
would be 3

÷ by 2, X by 4

Ex. 2 Cups
would be 4

÷ by 2, X by 5

Ex. 2 Cups
would be 5

1-1/2

÷ by 3, X by 2

Ex. 3 Cups
would be 2

÷ by 3, X by 4

Ex. 3 Cups
would be 4

÷ by 3, X by 5

Ex. 3 Cups
Would be 5

2

÷ by 4, X by 2

Ex. 4 Cups
would be 2

÷ by 4, X by 3

Ex. 4 Cups
would be 3

÷ by 4, X by 5

Ex. 4 Cups
would be 5

2-1/2

÷ by 5, X by 2

Ex. 5 Cups
would be 2

÷ by 5, X by 3

Ex. 5 Cups
would be 3

÷ by 5, X by 4

Ex. 5 Cups
would be 4

Once you have the recipe converted you may have odd decimal amounts. Use the chart below to convert these to the nearest amount. When hit with an odd amount you will need to round it up or down. This is done based on how close the decimal amount is to one measurement or the other. Example if the decimal amount is 2.33 then this would be 2-1/3. However, if it was 2.28 then it would be 2-1/4.

Decimal Conversion Chart

.0625
Equals
1/16
.125
Equals
1/8
.25
Equals
1/4
.375
Equals
1/3
.5
Equals
1/2
.625
Equals
2/3
.75
Equals
3/4
1
Equals
1

Example

Now using the two charts above we are going to convert a 1-1/2 pound recipe to a 1-pound recipe. Here is the 1-1/2 pound recipe.

1 Cup Water
1 Tsp. Salt
2 Tbsp. Sugar
2 Tbsp. Butter
3-1/2 Cups Bread Flour
2 Tbsp. Dry Milk
2 Tsp. Yeast

To convert this recipe to a 1-pound recipe we start with the water. Using a calculator punch in 1 and then according to the chart we need to divide the amount by 3 and then multiply it by 2. This gives us .66 now according to the second chart .66 is closest to .625 or 2/3 Cup. Now we move on to the salt. Again we punch in 1 then divide by 3 and multiply by 2. This gives us .66 which would be 2/3 Tsp. Now finish converting this recipe and compare your results to mine. Here is the converted recipe.

2/3 Cup Water
2/3 Tsp. Salt
1-1/3 Tbsp. Sugar
1-1/3 Tbsp. Butter
2-1/3 Cups Bread Flour
1-1/3 Tbsp. Dry Milk
1-1/3 Tsp. Yeast

All recipes I have converted in this fashion have worked fine. I do recommend however, that when making a converted recipe for the first time that you stay close by to check the dough for proper consistency. If it is too wet add 1 Tablespoon flour at a time until it makes a nice ball. If it is too dry add 1 Tablespoon water at a time until it makes a nice ball. Make sure to note these additions on your recipe for future use.

Option 2

If you are using a recipe management program that allows for recipe scaling based on servings, like MasterCook does. You can have the program scale your bread machine recipes up or down for you. For this to work you need to understand how many slices a certain size loaf of bread will make, use the chart below to figure this out.

1 Pound
=
8 Slices
1-1/2 Pound
=
12 Slices
2 Pound
=
16 Slices
2-1/2 Pound
=
20 Slices

To have your recipe management software scale your recipe up or down, you need to enter in the appropriate servings when you enter in your recipes. For example, if you enter in a 1-1/2 pound recipe, you need to set the servings to 12. That is because you will get 12 slices of bread from a finished 1-1/2 pound recipe. Use the above chart to set the appropriate servings for your recipes.

This method has two advantages. First, when you want nutritional information, the information that you get is per slice of bread. This is much more useful than say the calorie content of the whole loaf of bread. I don’t know too many people that eat a loaf at a time. Second, it makes it very easy to have the software do the math for you when you want to scale a recipe up or down.

Say for example you have a 12 serving 1-1/2 pound recipe and you just got a new 2-1/2 pound machine. Well, using the chart above you would tell your recipe management software to scale the recipe from 12 servings to 20 servings. You would then have a 2-1/2 pound recipe. Presto!

The Yeast

The only area of a recipe that you need to general ignore the amount is the yeast. I recommend that you look at other similar type recipes in bread machine cookbooks to get an idea of how much yeast to use for a said recipe. In general I have to use 1-1/2 teaspoons for a 1 pound loaf, 2-1/2 teaspoons for a 1-1/2, 2 or 2-1/2 pound loaf. You however need to use the amount that works for you. If you choose to use the converted amount of yeast do keep in mind that you may need more or less. For some reason your climate and location seems to play a part in the amount of yeast you need for a recipe to work. Just something to keep in mind.

  • So… how big are the recipes listed on this site? Are they for 1 1/2 lbs loaves? I get how to do conversions… I just don’t know what I would be starting from.

    JD
  • JD – They are usually 1 1/2 pounds. You can read more about our recipes at
    http://www.breadmachinedigest.com/about-our-recipes. Thanks for visiting the site.

    BMD
  • Hi: I am converting a recipe of my wifes Mom (an old Ukrainian recipe) and would like to reduce it to use in the bread machine. The recipe calls for 10 cups flour, 2 eggs, 1 tsp salt, 1 pkg yeast,1/2 cup sugar, 1 cup oil, 1 Tbsp vinegar, 1 cup scalded milk and 1 pint water. Any ideas on how to adapt this for a 4 cup bread maker?
    Thanks
    Jim

    Jim
  • Your Decimal Conversion chart is slightly wrong,
    .333 = 1/3
    .666 = 2/3

    DF
  • Hi, The suggestions for yeast are helpful. I am using some ingredients that are not listed in the program. Like yeast, I would like to know if they are to be increased/decreased differently in respect to their content.
    My recipe uses 3 Tablespoons Sweet Dairy Whey,1/2 teaspoon liquid lecithin, 2 T Gluten flour to 3 cups white whole wheat flour.

    recipe:(for Zojirushi S15) This makes a wonderfully light and moist bread.
    mix together I would like to double the recipe but don’t
    1 oz walnuts, chopped know enough about the ingredients mentioned
    1/18 oz sunflower kernals above to know how to do this.I’ve searched the
    1-1/2 tablespoons hot water internet for information without success.
    Can you help?
    10 oz water
    1-1/2 tablespoons oil
    1-1/2 tablespoons honey
    1/2 teaspoon liquid lecithin

    14 oz Praire Gold white wheat flour
    3 tablespoons Sweet Dairy Whey
    2 Tablespoons Gluten flour
    1-1/2 tablespoons sea salt
    1/8 teaspoon ascorbic acid

    Jeri Dake
  • I have recently purchased as one pound breadmaker which is perfect size for the two of us. Some of the recipes in a book I purchased call for one or two eggs for the 2 pound machine. My common ssense says I mpt to divide eggs, but want the experienced voice with this type of recipe.

    Thanks.

    Lyndy
  • Has anyone had any luck with wheat and gluten free recipes for their 2lb machine?

    Tracey
  • I have a small Mini Zojirushi breadmaker,only has capacity
    for a one pound loaf.Can I use any recipe for a two pound
    and just cut the ingredients in half?
    Thanks
    Tillie

    Tillie Fedorak
  • Tillie, you are right, just cut the recipe in half and you will be just fine.

    Joan
  • I have a mini Zojirushi Bread machine.
    After the bread is baked I have a difficult
    time getting the little “whippy-Thingie”
    out.I usally have to put water in the
    bucket to soak it.Is there an easier way
    to get this thing out.
    Thanks
    Tillie

    Tillie Fedorak
  • I guess you mean the”paddle”. Grab the “recipient” (where the bread cooked) in one hand, grab the underneath “helix” (which is part of the paddle inside the recipient), rest the recipient on the kitchen-counter to free your hand so you can also grab the paddle, move one while you hold the other, you feel a “click”. It is now free. But if the paddle stays attached, it is only because the mixture than became “bread” has dried like glue. So you put some water and wait a bit, it will come out easily and wash the inside of your recipient at the same time. Wipe it very dry. Put the paddle inside and it will be ready for next time. If you have the book that came with the machine, there is a little drawing to show you how.. Good luck.

    antea buel
  • I have a Danish bread recipe that uses 1 egg in 1 lb loaf. When converting to 1 1/2 lb do you go up to extra large egg? and 2 lb do you use 2 eggs? Thanx

    Bob Conery

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