Best Digital Food Scale
A health craze is sweeping the nation, and many eaters are becoming manic about portion control — carefully measuring out ingredients and painstakingly tracking calories and other information.
Are you a health nut? If so, you have one of two options:
- Opt for an analog food scale that relies on a spring and a not-to-be-trusted rotating pin, or …
- Buy from among the many best digital food scale options on the market.
A digital food scale isn’t just for health-conscious eaters, though. Some use digital scales in offices for nailing postage on packages. Some use them as part of professional baking operations or even in commercial kitchens.
Different users will have different needs when seeking out the best digital food scale option, but there’s one truth that binds everyone together: Life’s too short to use the spring-and-pin analog food scale like you remember your grandmother using.
Scales help control portions, mix ingredients even mail packages.
To help you find your best digital food scale option, here’s a look at the top picks — and a recommendation on which one you should choose to buy.
|GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale (Our Top Pick!)||8.8 x 8.7 x 4.3 in. (1.6 lbs.)|
|Etekcity Digital Kitchen Scale||7.1 x 5.5 x 0.7 in. (7.2 oz.)|
|EatSmart Precision Pro Digital Kitchen Scale||8 x 6 x 1.8 in. (12.8 oz.)|
|Accuweight Digital Kitchen Scale||9.5 x 8.4 x 2 in. (1.3 lbs.)|
|Zerla Digital Kitchen Scale||9.9 x 8 x 2.6 in. (1.1 lbs.)|
1. GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale — Best Overall
This digital kitchen scale anticipates the needs of its users. You need a bowl or container that makes measuring easy? You get it with the GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale. Want a surface that’s easy to clean and that won’t tarnish over time? The GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale’s bowl is made of stainless steel for fast and easy cleaning and a surface that won’t fade. Need something stylish that is just as home sitting out on a counter as it is capable of tucking into the pantry or a cabinet? The GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale is stylish and attractive, and it’s small enough to fit into tight spots for storage.
This is your best digital kitchen scale option for a number of reasons, but chief among them is the sheer number of features it includes — a room temperature sensor, alarm timer and the essential tare function included. It’s white LED display is backlit for easy reading, and it’s digital numerals are large enough that you won’t have to squint.
You might think these additional features would come at a premium, but the GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale is competitive in pricing when compared to the other options in this review. As you know prices vary on Amazon, but this scale was available for $19.99 at the time of this writing.
Easy to Use, Easy to Clean
The GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale offers the most features of any of the options in this review, and it’s removable bowl lets you measure using any dish you like — or simple the product’s surface. And, because you can use any dish you like, cleaning is simple and easy. A surface-only digital kitchen scale can create a mess that you don’t want to clean up. Stainless steel is also a nice touch over plastic options delivered by other digital kitchen scales.
The Auto-Shut-Off Conundrum
Yes, the battery life in this unit drains a little quickly. But you get a head start with the 2 AAA batteries that are included — you don’t have to go looking for your own. The GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale includes a 2-minute auto-shut-off feature that’s supposed to prevent the battery from draining unnecessarily. That said, many users get frustrated when they turn from the scale for a few minutes and turn back only to find that the unit is hibernating.
This is particularly tough when your hands are dirty or messy and you don’t want to get the scale dirty and messy. I’m not sure what the solution here is, but know that there are options with longer auto-shut-off features that will give you a few more precious seconds.
The GDEALER’s Achilles’ Heel
While some of the other options on this page are a little rickety and fail to inspire confidence in their durability, the GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale is well constructed of durable materials that can withstand the rigors of the kitchen — for the most part.
There is just one exception. The GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale features rubber feet on its bottom that prevent slipping and that ensure a level surface for accurate measuring. But these feet are prone to pop off, and, when they do, they render the unit almost unusable. Owners are forced to secure replacements or to rig a fix using super glue and home materials.
This doesn’t always happen, but it’s happened enough to raise a red flag. Make sure those little rubber feet are secure!
Pros and Cons of the GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale
Pros of the GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale:
- Plenty of features to meet your unique needs
- Durable construction and attractive price that create value
- Sleek stainless steel appearance that’s right at home in stylish kitchens
Cons of the GDEALER Digital Kitchen Scale:
- Short battery life
- Loud beeping that accompanies some functions
- Rubber feet prone to pop off
2. Etekcity Digital Kitchen Scale — Best for Travelers
When you live in a New York City one-bedroom or another tiny space, you don’t always have plentiful space for storing even the best digital food scale. And when you are constantly on the road for work or for fun and you want to be able to manage your portions, you need a digital food scale option that can go on the road with you.
For those in tight spaces and those on the go, the Etekcity Digital Kitchen Scale is here to meet your needs.
This option offers just as much capacity as the others despite its small footprint and incredibly lightweight at just 7.2 ounces. Like the GDEALER option, it also features stainless steel construction with a anti-fingerprint surface that makes cleaning fast and easy. There’s no accompanying bowl to go with it, but that’s OK — you can always use your own in conjunction with the unit’s tare function.
Attractive and Transportable
This is an ideal option for those who lead a stylish and high-flying lifestyle. The Etekcity Digital Kitchen Scale will look great if you’re forced to keep it out on the kitchen counter, and its 7.2-ounce will barely register in your suitcase or carry-on. Yes, a small footprint comes with its own challenges, but this is an incredible useful option for those who care about what kitchen appliances look like and those who need something that can go wherever it needs to go.
Reading Made Easy
Some of the less substantial digital kitchen scale offer old-school screens that lack backlighting and make it difficult to see measurements. That’s not the case with the Etekcity Digital Kitchen Scale. It’s violet and backlit display makes reading easy — as long as a bowl or plate isn’t obscuring the screen.
The display features a 2-minute auto-shut-off function that is about par for digital food scale options, and 2 AAA batteries are included to help you get started. The battery life complaints that cropped up with the GDEALER option were not present with the Etekcity Digital Kitchen Scale.
Too Much Sensitivity?
Sensitivity is a good thing, right? Not always. When you push a button on the Etekcity Digital Kitchen Scale, it actually applies the weight of your finger to the measurement. Once you remove your finger, it takes a moment for the reading to recalibrate. Also, if you have a dish or water bottle that slightly leans against the scale, it’s sensitive enough to add that weight to the measurement.
Yes, sensitivity is a good thing, but just be careful what you keep around your scale when in use, and be sure to wait for it to recalibrate after removing your finger from the button.
Pros and Cons of the Etekcity Digital Kitchen Scale
Pros of the Etekcity Digital Kitchen Scale:
- Incredibly lightweight at 7.2 ounces
- Attractive appearance that allows for storage on counters
- Small enough that it slips into a drawer
Cons of the Etekcity Digital Kitchen Scale:
- Display sometimes obscured by larger dishes
- Sensitive to the point of fault?
3. EatSmart Precision Pro Digital Scale — Best for Auto-Shut-Off
There’s one common complaint among users of digital food scales — they despise auto-shut-off features. These features are designed to prevent the battery from draining while the unit is not in use, but it’s incredibly aggravating when you turn away from the scale and turn back only to find that it has shut-off on you.
That’s one of the reasons why the EatSmart Precision Pro Digital Kitchen Scale is an attractive option. While other options on this list offer a 2-minute shut-off function, the EatSmart is more generous at 3 minutes. This may seem like an insignificant difference, but it matters to those who are getting into the groove in the kitchen and who get frustrated by the overly twitchy shut-off feature.
Get a Free EatSmart Calorie Factors Guide
Most digital food scale options come with the batteries needed — most often 2 AAA batteries. But this kitchen scale comes with something just as valuable and helpful — a free Calorie Factors Guide. This guide provides tips and insights for counting calories and taking charge of portion control. If you’re just starting on a new health endeavor, this might be attractive unit because of its relatively affordable price (available as low as $15.02 at the time of this writing), and because you get this helpful guide to get you started in making healthier decisions.
Users of the EatSmart Precision Pro Digital Kitchen Scale are finding that the unit feels unsubstantial. Its button labels even begin to wear away quickly, which reinforces the idea that quality was not at the heart of its construction. In operation, it can be a little slow to respond, too. You must wait a while for the unit to respond after buttons are depressed, and you must add items slowly to get them to register accurately.
This units display is large and provides views from several different angles, but it’s not always easy to see — especially in dim lighting. Some of the backlit options make reading the screen far easier. This one can be a challenge for anyone who’s operating in a dark kitchen space, or anyone whose eyesight isn’t what it used to be.
Pros and Cons of the EatSmart Precision Pro Digital Kitchen Scale
Pros of the EatSmart Precision Pro Digital Kitchen Scale:
- Features free EatSmart Calorie Factors guide
- 3-minute auto-shut-off provides extra time
Cons of the EatSmart Precision Pro Digital Kitchen Scale:
- Construction isn’t as durable as other options
- Delay after depressing buttons creates delays
- Display is difficult to read in dim light
4. Accuweight Digital Kitchen Scale — Best for Glass Surface
If you want a slightly different look our of your food measuring device, consider the Accuweight Digital Kitchen Scale. It includes 4 highly accurate sensors and a glass platform rather than one of stainless steel or chrome. The glass looks nice, and it’s also easy to wipe down.
In other ways, the Accuweight Digital Kitchen Scale is a perfectly acceptable option, but not one that’s going to wow you in any way. It offers a tare function, and it includes a shut-off feature to help maintain battery life. It’s relatively lightweight and portable, and it includes an LCD display that makes for easy reading.
If you’re interested in a glass surface and you like the look of this unit, go ahead and make the purchase. While it’s not quite as versatile and not quite the level of quality as other options, it can get the job done in your kitchen.
Your Glass Surface Option
You’ll find a number of materials used in the surfaces of digital kitchen scales, but it’s not often that you find one made of glass. The Accuweight Digital Kitchen Scale uses a surface made of tempered glass that’s 3 times stronger than traditional glass. Yes, it’s easy to wipe down, and you may like the look and feel of a glass-surfaced scale. But the attached surface and the overall design of the unit makes cleaning difficult, which is not a fun situation if you’re going some messy cooking.
Backlit Screen for Easy Reading
The Accuweight Digital Kitchen Scale provides many of the common features you would expect, such as a tare function. But one of the differentiators in a digital food scale is its screen — its size and its clarity. Some screen lack backlighting that makes reading easy when a bowl is hovering over the screen or when cooking by candlelight or in similarly dim environments. The Accuweight Digital Kitchen Scale’s blue backlight LCD screen takes care of this problem and makes reading your measurements simple.
Looks Great in the Kitchen — Where it Will Stay
The Accuweight Digital Kitchen Scale isn’t going on the road as the Etekcity option could. It weighs 1.4 pounds and is slightly larger than the Etekcity unit, which means it will most likely stay in your kitchen. But it would look great out on a kitchen counter if you have trouble storing it elsewhere. And, overall, the Accuweight Digital Kitchen Scale delivers the functions and capabilities that almost anyone needs.
It really just comes down to the look that you like and the price you want to pay — this unit was available for $16.99 at the time of this writing.
Pros and Cons of the Accuweight Digital Kitchen Scale
Pros of the Accuweight Digital Kitchen Scale:
- LCD screen is large and easy to read
- Glass surface is easy to wipe down
- attractive design makes it aesthetically pleasing if left on a counter
Cons of the Accuweight Digital Kitchen Scale:
- No bowl to help contain objects being measured
- Glass surface does not detach, making cleaning complicated
5. Zerla Digital Kitchen Scale — Best for Attached Bowl
The right bowl can be a lifesaver when using a digital kitchen scale. You need a bowl that fits onto your scale, and one that is also easy to clean (while being large to fit inside what you need to). The Zerla Digital Kitchen Scale features a built-in bowl that cannot be detached, which is great news for some and not-great news for others.
The Zerla is more of a budget option, available for $12.99 at the time of this writing. Its construction is not going to be as durable as what you’ll find with other options, and its screen is not backlit for easy reading. But it gets the job done and an attached bowl may be a must-have as you consider your best digital food scale options.
The Blessing (and Curse) of an Attached Bowl
It’s all about perspective. Some users are going to adore the attached bowl and the convenience it provides, while others are sure to curse it. Perhaps what you need to measure doesn’t fit into the bowl, or perhaps you grow frustrated by the inability to clean it with ease. There’s also a chance that the plastic bowl fades and tarnishes over time, which is not what you expect out of an investment in a digital food scale.
Middling Display Readability
The Zerla Digital Kitchen Scale does boast about a slanted front that makes reading its screen simple and easy. But the screen is not backlit, which doesn’t help much when you’re preparing food in dim light or in conditions where the screen is that easy to read (like when measuring a large dish that casts a shadow). It’s not the worst possible screen option, but it’s certainly not the best either.
A Plastic Look and Feel
In general, the Zerla Digital Kitchen Scale rated low for durable construction. It has a plastic feel that can make it look cheap, and it just doesn’t feel as substantial as some of your other options. That’s not to say the unit is going to fall apart on your in the first month of use, but it doesn’t inspire the same confidence as some of the options that incorporate stainless steel and glass.
Pros and Cons of the Zerla Digital Food Scale
Pros of the Zerla Digital Food Scale:
- Attached bowl is convenient in many cases
- Slanted front is designed to make reading screen easy
- Small rim prevents liquid runoff
Cons of the Zerla Digital Food Scale:
- Attached bowl makes cleaning difficult
- Plastic bowl has been known to fade and tarnish over time
- Screen is not backlit for easy reading
It’s easy to make the mistake of assuming that all digital kitchen scales are created equal. But, if you treat kitchen scales like a commodity to be purchased at the lowest price, you’re not going to get the best digital food scale — and you’re going to end up spending a lot more money by getting a replacement in a matter of months rather than years.
How Should You Differentiate
So, you’re looking for some of the key differentiators in the digital kitchen scale world. We already know that 11 pounds is a common capacity and that most scales will measure down to .01 ounces or 1 gram. But here’s a look at the areas where different scales set themselves apart from the crowd:
Some scales feature backlit screen that are far easier to read than non-backlit version. Some scales also features stainless steel construction (or construction of other substantial materials), which is going to help them stand up to the challenges of an oft-used kitchen. And still others may offer key features that you’re interested in, like a detachable bowl, a time, a room temperature sensor and more.
Decide what’s important to your beforehand, and then make your best decision based on those key decision factors.
But is it always easy to find the information you need? It can be, depending on the product you’re interested in. Here are a few ideas for making the most of your decision-gathering process:
- Read the Reviews
- Take Advantage of Warranties
- Check the Price
Read reviews like this one or like the ones you can find on Amazon and similar sites. Consider taking advantage of warranty windows, too. You can find a model you like, order it, try it out, and send it back if it does mot fully meet your needs. Also, scan prices for deals. If you find a digital food scale that is outrageously inexpensive, it may be worth it to you to take risk.
Frequently Asked Questions
It uses a spring that buried deep inside the machinery, and a rotating pin indicates the weight. But you can weigh the same object three straight times and get three different readings, and it’s also more difficult to discern the food scale’s exact measurement by looking at an analog readout.
On the flip side, a good digital scale is going to give you an accurate measurement each and every time — typically do a nearest tenth, which you won’t have to strain your eyes to read. The one thing analog food scales has going for them? No batteries. That’s it, though.
Here’s the thing, though: You can get a great digital food scale without paying top dollar. Find an option from a trusted brand that delivers value. If you find that you’re not getting accurate readings, try calibrating your scale. Each option should come with an instruction manual that will walk you through the process.
Also do your measuring on a hard, level surface to ensure that you’re getting the best, most accurate readings.
Making the Most of Your Investment in the Best Digital Food Scale
Make sure you get the most use out of your digital food scale after making your purchase. There are three easy things you can do to make sure that you coax every last day of use out of your best digital food scale option:
- Clean Immediately
- Consider Disengaging the Battery
- Store in a Secure Place
The value you get from a digital food scale is going to be tied to its inherent quality, but you can also extends its life through a series of simple tasks. Always clean immediately after using. Consider taking out the batteries if you’re going to store your scale for long periods of time (so batteries don’t leak and damage the unit). And consider storing in a safe place (like the pantry or a cabinet), as leaving it on a counter can lead to unexpected damage.
Final Thoughts on Finding the Best Digital Food Scale
The best digital food scale (for your needs) can be a highly valuable addition to your kitchen or to the collection of things you take on road trips. Yes, portion control and healthy eating are becoming more and more prominent, and a digital food scale can help you achieve both.
Take all the information and advice above and make the best decision for you. No two people prepare food the same way, and the best digital food scale for your needs may not be the same as the best kitchen scale option for others.
Do you have addition to what’s been shared here? Let us know about your digital food scale in the comments section below, or you can always reach out to us directly through our contact page.
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