# Custom Recipes: Servings versus grams

When entering a custom recipe and deciding how much of the recipe you want to eat at a sitting, there are two ways to go. The first seems to be what most people choose to do: either enter the recipe and number of desired servings into Cronomenter, then when finished cooking, divide into containers accordingly. The other option is to go by grams. After you've entered your recipe, Cronometer will tell you the total grams the recipe weighs. You can then choose the amount of said recipe you want to consume at any given meal and enter it in your diary.

I prefer the second method. If I am making a large pot of soup or stew (say, over 10 servings), I don't necessarily have enough jars to divide it up into servings. Also, once a recipe has been divided into servings, you are committed to consuming the food in that particular serving size (if you want to track it accurately, anyway) until it is gone. I prefer the flexibility of being able to eat a smaller serving one day, and a larger serving another day, depending on what else I'm planning to consume.

The problem is, Cronometer sometimes calculates the total weight of a recipe completely incorrectly. If you prepare a casserole, for example, from a recipe you've entered in Cronometer, it may tell you that the finished recipe weighs hundreds of grams more than the actual weight on your food scale. This means that - if I track and eat 300 grams of casserole - I am actually consuming many more calories than are appearing in my diary. This problem appears to be because a) Cronometer doesn't account for water that cooks off during cooking and b) some ingredients don't have a weight listed in the database, so they come out as zero.

Cronometer will not let you change the total grams of the recipe. It is set in stone. The only way you can alter it is by adding a dummy entry of water, or a negative dummy entry of water, to make the Cronometer weight match the actual weight.

Has anyone else observed this? How do you deal with it? Or am I the only person that doesn't just divide their food into servings and eat them that way?

I’ve just switched from MFP and the way they do it is you enter the ingredients and then you enter the total weight of the cooked recipe into “number of servings”. When you go to eat you weight your portion and enter the weight into the number of servings section and MFP does all the math.

is there a way to do something similar?

• check out this thread! @Karen_Cronometer has some great tips!

Hilary
cronometer.com
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• @Hilary I’m sorry, which thread?

i was wondering, if you were to weigh a total recipe and enter that weight into “servings per recipe” of the Serving Based section, would that not get Cronometer to do the math?

So in @Hapless_Heather example of the casserole say the casserole weights 1000g once cooked, using the “Servings based” section you would enter 1000 into “servings per recipe”. Once you go to eat you’d enter the weight of the portion you cut off (300g) when adding it to your diary.

would this work?

• Yes, which thread? This just takes me to the person's user profile.

• @The_Real_Redding I'm not sure that would work. Because if Cron is calculating the nutrition per gram based on what it thinks the original recipe weighs, the macros/calories are still going to be wrong. Adding a dummy entry of water (or negative water) to the original recipe is the only way I know to fix it...at least until we figure out which thread @Hillary is talking about.

• edited January 2020

@Karen_Cronometer shared a simple fix with me.

https://forums.cronometer.com/discussion/comment/10137/#Comment_10137

You just add negative water to the recipe.

It's genius!

Edit: Oh, I see you have already worked that out. I don't see what the problem is. The missing weight is mostly evaporated water, you have a way of subtracting it. What else do you need?

• @Hapless_Heather I’m not sure it really matters about lost water weight, the calories and macros would still be pretty much the same since water has no nutritional value. It’s just like cooking chicken breast....I always use the raw weight in my tracking even though once cooked the weight has changed. Sure you loss a little nutrition in the cooking process, but not enough to really worry about.

I’m just not sure how the app handles the math. My thinking is by entering the cooked weight of the recipe as the number of serving the app will just divide the recipe up. So let’s say your casserole is 1000g cooked and it’s 10,000 kcal total. You enter 1000 into Number of Servings, the app does the math and each serving would be equal to 1g/10kcal. So when it’s time to eat you dish yourself a portion, weigh it and use the weight as your number of servings.

• Hilary
cronometer.com
As always, any and all postings here are covered by our T&Cs:
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• @Hilary thanks, that confirms my suspicions about recipes and entering the weight into the number of servings section.