What Does Scant Mean?

Measuring cup just scant of 12.5ml
"Scant" means "just barely." Douglas Sacha / Getty Images


Q. When a recipe calls for a scant cup or scant teaspoon, what does that mean?

A. The term "scant" is used occasionally in recipes and cookbooks.

Scant means "just barely." In cooking, scant refers to an amount that's just barely reaching; in other words, not packed.


When a recipe calls for a scant cup or scant teaspoon of something, don't fill the measuring cup or spoon to the top. Instead, use slightly less than the required amount.

If you are still unsure about the correct amount, you might need to test your recipe once or twice before you get the amounts just right.

When testing, be sure to start with small amounts and gradually increase the measurement each time you test the recipe. 


Scant FAQ

What does a scant cup mean?
The word scant means not fully packed or filled. In cooking recipes, a scant cup means just shy of a full cup.
What is a scant cup of flour?
A scant cup of flour just a little less than a full cup of flour.
What does scant mean in medical terms?
In medical terms, the word scant is used to describe something that is not enough. An insufficient amount of anything that is secreted from the body is known as scant.
What is the opposite of scant?
The word scant is mostly used for cooking purposes. However, scant, in its literal meaning is any amount that is barely sufficient. Its antonym would be ample or full.