Here’s How Many Cups Are in a Pound of Sugar

Get accurate measurements in any recipe with these answers to how many cups are in a pound of powdered sugar, brown sugar, or granulated sugar.

When holiday baking season rolls around (or you find a recipe you can't wait to make but the measurements are in metric), it can be very helpful to know the cups of sugar in a pound conversion for different sugar types. Each variety of sugar has a different number of cups per pound due to their varying textures and consistency. To make your baking life even easier, you could stick to weights of sugar and use a handy kitchen scale ($30, Bed Bath & Beyond) for the most precise measuring. If you don't have a scale in your kitchen and just need to know the numbers, we break down the cups per pound of sugar for you here.

How to Convert Pounds of Sugar into Cups

BHG / Zoe Hansen

Cups of Powdered Sugar in a Pound

One pound of powdered sugar contains approximately 4 cups. This is the usual size and amount in one box of powdered sugar. Compared to the other sugars listed here, powdered sugar (or confectioners sugar) is fluffier and light, so you get more cups per pound.

Cups of Brown Sugar in a Pound

One pound of brown sugar (light or dark) contains about 3½ cups when loose and 2¼ cups when packed into measuring cups ($15, Target). Packed brown sugar is called for in most recipes.

Cups of Sugar in a Pound

One pound of granulated sugar contains approximately 2 cups. The grain of granulated sugar is the smallest of these sugars so it's much heavier by weight, therefore you get the fewest number of cups per pound of this type of sugar.

Measuring sugar
Blaine Moats

Helpful Sugar Tips

In addition to knowing how many cups of sugar are in a pound, it's helpful to know how to measure sugar properly, what kind of substitutions you can make for brown sugar, and other substitutions for sugar in case you run out.

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