Food: Style/Terminology

Reorganized 10/6/22

dry beans
not dried beans (added10/6/22)

1 tsp. black pepper
not 1 teaspoon pepper
(the pepper can also be crushed, ground, or coarse ground)

reduced-sodium chicken broth
not 50%-lower-sodium chicken broth (clarified 10/6/22)

2 Tbsp. packed brown sugar
(use “packed” no matter what the measurement)

Call for salted butter. The Test Kitchen always uses salted butter; salt is adjusted in the recipe accordingly.
2 Tbsp. salted butter
not 2 Tbsp. butter (added 1/12/23; implemented beginning with Fall Recipes 2023)

2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
2 (4-oz.) skinless, boneless chicken breasts
2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts (x lb. total) OR X lb. skinless, boneless chicken breasts
no longer using chicken breast halves (added 10/6/22)

If an ingredient will be used at more than one point in a recipe, add “, divided” after the ingredient in list.
2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 cup plus 1 Tbsp. granulated sugar, divided (use “divided” only if the amounts will be added at different parts of the method) (example added 3/29/24)
Do not add “divided” if an amount isn’t specified in method (example: “Add salt to taste” or “If you like, sprinkle with additional cilantro”).
(added 5/9/23; implemented beginning with Christmas Cookies 2023)

1 egg, beaten
not 1 beaten egg

snipped fresh parsley
not snipped parsley
(pertains to all fresh herbs)

pure maple syrup
specify pure maple syrup in ingredient list so people don’t substitute pancake syrup
if we are just saying to serve a recipe (like waffles) with maple syrup, then “pure” doesn’t need to be specified (added10/6/22)

dried pasta
when you want the dried variety

For shapes, call for cup measure unless you are using a whole pound/box. Call for long pasta by weight.
3 cups dried cavatelli pasta (12 oz.)
16 oz. dried penne pasta [uses whole box]
8 oz. dried spaghetti (added10/6/22)

Do not use “granulated” with sugar unless there are other kinds of sugar.


SKILLET SIZES (added 4/7/21)

Use the dimension of skillets instead of size. Below is how the dimensions and sizes match up (sizes for reference only).
Example: In a 12-inch skillet (not “In an extra-large skillet”)

  • 12-inch (extra-large)
  • 10-inch (large)
  • 8-inch (medium)
  • 6-inch (small)

COMMON BAKING PAN SIZES (updated 10/18/19)

  • Use dish if it is glass or ceramic; pan if it is metal.
  • Dishes are usually used for things like casseroles or baked items that contain an acid like a blueberry filling.
  • Casseroles are usually round or oval and can have a lid.
  • See page 477 of Red Plaid 17th edition for more information.

8-inch round cake pan (specify 8×2-inch round cake pans only when you need the depth)
9-inch round cake pan (specify 9×2-inch round cake pans only when you need the depth)
8-inch square cake pan
9-inch square cake pan
11×7-inch baking pan
13×9-inch baking pan
15×10-inch baking pan
15×10-inch jelly-roll pan (when being used for baking a jelly-roll cake)
9×5-inch loaf pan or 8×4-inch loaf pan
1½-quart rectangular baking dish
2-quart rectangular baking pan
2-quart square baking dish (volume is equal to an 8-inch baking pan)
3-quart rectangular baking dish (volume is equivalent to 13×9-inch baking pan)
9-inch pie plate


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