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Recipe Conversion(s)


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#1 pcjunkie27

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 07:08 PM

Hello all,

I just joined this forum. I've noticed that many people have gotten much help here, and it seems very successful. I hope that you guys can help me!

I'm trying to create an excel spreadsheet to scale recipes up and down. More specifically, if a recipe calls for 1 cup flour, and i want to scale it down by 1/2, then that would be 1/2 cup flour. Here's the problem: What if i want to scale the recipe up by 4. So I would need to add 4 cups of flour. Now, 4 cups is equal to one quart. I want excel to automatically pick the largest conversion and use that, and so on. So, instead of the output being 4 cups, it would be one pint. I'm not sure how to do this. Any input would be greatly appreciated!

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#2 Orange Blossom

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 08:02 PM

I don't know how to answer that specific question; however, being a cook and a baker I can certainly complicate things for you.

Dry ingredients are not measured in pints and quarts. Flour, sugar etc. uses cups or smaller units in recipes. For liquids, generally in soup recipes or similar recipe writers use liquid measures such as quarts. In other sorts of recipes, generally, they stick with cups.

Liquid ingredients do not necessarily increase by the same ratio that dry ingredients do. I recall reading something on that. Seasonings don't either, and chances are sweeteners such as sugar also shouldn't be increased in the same ratio. Fats such as butter or shortening also do not increase in the same ratio.

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#3 pcjunkie27

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 08:08 PM

Orange Blossom,

Thank you for your reply. I understand exactly what you're saying, nonetheless, I still would like to do this in Excel. It would give me a round-about answer of how much of ingredient X I need.

#4 Eyesee

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 09:57 PM

Hello and welcome to the Cooking Chef unsuported BC fourum!

Remember that altitude is a factor when cooking or baking.
Water boils at a lower temperature at a higer elevation.

Edit: Given that, what altitude?

If I get a chance tomorrow I will ask a friend of mine that has a cullinary degree.
When he cooks though he just wings recipes and they always turn out great.

I dont think that it can be done.
Might get close though.

The conversion up and down will be the hard part.
Particularly the liquid ingredients and adjusting for cooking time.

Edited by Eyesee, 09 August 2011 - 10:05 PM.

In the beginning there was the command line.

#5 Orange Blossom

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 10:09 PM

I've been doing some searching to see if I could find an answer for you, but I'm drawing a blank.

I can find conversion functions, but those all convert to a specific unit, not to a varying unit. That's going to be the difficult aspect to find a solution for if one even exists.

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#6 pcjunkie27

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 06:45 PM

Orange Blosson and Eyesee,

I may have explained myself incorrectly. What I'm looking for is to use Excel to "scale" to scale recipes. Another example would be a scenario like this:

A person walks 9,287 feet. How many miles, yards, feet is this?

1 Mile = 5,280 feet.
1 yard = 3 feet

1 Mile (5,280 feet) + 1,335 yards (4,005 feet) + 2 feet.

I'm not sure if this is making much sense, but it would be really useful to have a program that can do this, especially for recipes. Orange Blossom, I perfectly understand that quarts are used for liquid measurements, I was only trying to make a point of what I wanted to do. Although, that wasn't the best example to use. Eyesee, as said before, I'm not trying to cook based off of the Excel conversions, I'm just trying to get it to convert. Disregard the altitude, cooking times, and all that jazz.

I hope that I've explained myself a little better! If not, please let me know, and I'll try to clarify more!

Orange Blossom and Eyesee, thank you for helping and I hope to hear from you soon.

#7 Orange Blossom

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 11:20 PM

As I stated in my previous reply:

I can find conversion functions, but those all convert to a specific unit, not to a varying unit. That's going to be the difficult aspect to find a solution for if one even exists.


In other words, for example: You could write a function that will convert millimeters to centimeters; however, what I cannot find is something that will convert millimeters to centimeters or decimeters or meters etc. depending on how many millimeters you start off with.

Same for any other type unit you would care to use.

Someone who's a programmer might be able to create such a thing and possibly tie it into Excel, but my programming is limited to very basic Basic that I studied nearly 30 years ago, and I have forgotten more than I remember.

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#8 Eyesee

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Posted 11 August 2011 - 01:08 PM

See if http://www.halfrecipe.com/ helps.
In the beginning there was the command line.

#9 pcjunkie27

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Posted 12 August 2011 - 06:35 PM

Orange Blossom and Eyesee,

Yesterday, I E-mailed my professor and he made me an excel spreadsheet showing me how to do do it. Basically, he used the INT and MOD functions in excel. The INT function is used to take the whole number. For example, 2 / 7 = 3.5; the INT function only takes out the 3. The MOD function would take out the 5. Doing that, he was able to determine how many cups, tablespoons, and teaspoons are needed for each recipe.

Thanks for your help Orange Blossom and Eyesee, I really do appreciate it!

#10 Eyesee

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Posted 16 August 2011 - 03:49 PM

Glad you got it working!
It would be a tricky spreadsheet to create without seeing exactly what you are doing
In the beginning there was the command line.




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