Everything you need to know about converting cups in a gallon (and other helpful imperial measurements)!
Cups to Gallons
- There are 16 cups in 1 gallon.
- There are 8 cups in a half gallon.
- A cup is 8 fluid ounces and a gallon is 128 fluid ounces. A half-gallon is 64 fluid ounces.
These are all handy measurements that are hard to remember, but oh so important if you are brewing kombucha or beer and sometimes in cooking. The metric system would admittedly be easier, but we Americans are a stubborn and sentimental lot, and will no doubt hang on to our cups and gallons. So where did we get our measurements from? Well, it is a long story, or at least a very old one. In Rome everything was measured in 1/2s, 1/4s, 1/8s etc. This seems awkward today as the decimal based metric system is so simple, but in Roman times 1/4 of a gallon, i.e. a quart, was easy to measure. A 1/4 was obtained by dividing the contents in half then half again. Dividing a wine jug into 1/10s was hard to do accurately, and someone was going to get angry at getting shorted. Not a good think in ancient Rome.
What Is A Gallon?
1 gallon is 128 ounces. The term gallon comes from Rome originating from the word Galleta or Galletum meaning wine jug. Clearly the Romans liked their wine in large containers!
What Is A Cup?
1 cup is 8 ounces. There are 16 cups in a gallon, 8 cups in a half-gallon, 4 cups in a quart, and 2 cups in a pint.
Unlike much of our measuring system, which comes from Rome, the cup was quite the late comer to American food and beverage measurements. It was initiated by Fannie Farmer, the director of the Boston Cooking School in 1896, and first appeared in her book “The Boston Cooking School Cook Book”. Before Fannie forced this change many recipes used terms like a handful of corn or a generous portion of flour. I know people who can successfully cook this way today. They just pour in ingredients and their cooking comes out perfectly. For the rest of us, however, Fannie Farmer’s standardization was a great service.
|8 fl oz||1 cup||1/2 pint||1/4 quart||1/16 gallon|
|16 fl oz||2 cups||1 pint||1/2 quart||1/8 gallon|
|32 fl oz||4 cups||2 pints||1 quart||1/4 gallon|
|64 fl oz||8 cups||4 pints||2 quarts||1/2 gallon|
|128 fl oz||16 cups||8 pints||4 quarts||1 gallon|
So to recap, how many cups are in a gallon? The answer is 16 cups.