How Many Ounces in a Jigger: A Guide to Cocktail Measurements

Jiggers are an essential tool for any bartender or cocktail enthusiast. They provide accuracy and consistency in measurements, which is crucial for creating the perfect drink every time. However, understanding how many ounces are in a jigger can be confusing, especially for beginners. In this guide, we will explain what a jigger is, why it’s important to use one, and how to measure without a jigger if you don’t have one. Additionally, we’ll cover jigger sizes and conversions, including how to convert between ounces, milliliters, and tablespoons. Whether you’re a professional bartender or just starting out, this guide will help you master the art of cocktail making.

What is a Jigger?

Types of Jiggers

Types of Jiggers

When it comes to selecting a jigger for your cocktail making needs, there are several options available on the market. Understanding the different types of jiggers can help you choose the one that best suits your preferences and bartending style.

Japanese Jigger

The Japanese jigger is a popular option among professional bartenders due to its sleek design and accuracy. It typically holds 1 oz on one side and 1.5 oz on the other, making it perfect for measuring small amounts of ingredients. The slim and straight shape of this jigger also makes it easy to pour into shakers or mixing glasses without spilling.

OXO Jigger

The OXO jigger is a newer addition to the market, but it has quickly gained popularity among home bartenders due to its user-friendly features. It has a soft, non-slip grip and a clear measurement marking, which makes it easy to read even in low lighting conditions. This jigger usually comes with a double-sided measurement of 1 oz and 2 oz, allowing for versatility in creating cocktails.

Angled Jigger

The angled jigger has a unique shape that sets it apart from the traditional straight jiggers. Its slanted design allows for easy pouring into shakers or mixing glasses, and its wider base helps prevent tipping. This jigger often comes in various sizes, with the most common being 1 oz and 2 oz measurements.

When selecting a jigger, it’s important to consider your personal preferences and the type of cocktails you will be making. Each jigger has its own set of benefits and drawbacks, so it’s essential to test them out and see which one works best for you. By investing in a high-quality jigger that suits your needs, you can ensure that your cocktails are accurately measured and consistently delicious.

Why Use a Jigger?

Using a jigger is essential for any bartender who wants to create consistently delicious cocktails. Here are a few reasons why:


A jigger allows you to measure precisely how much of each ingredient you’re adding to a cocktail. This matters because even small variations in measurements can significantly impact the taste and potency of your drink. Without a jigger, you might end up with too much of one ingredient or not enough of another, resulting in an unbalanced cocktail that doesn’t taste quite right.


Consistency is key in the world of bartending. Especially if you’re working in a busy bar, you don’t want to spend extra time trying to eyeball measurements or estimate quantities when making drinks. A jigger ensures that every cocktail you make has the same exact measurements, which helps with speed and efficiency as well as maintaining the quality of your drinks.


A good bartender knows that presentation matters. Using a jigger shows that you take your craft seriously and that you’re committed to making high-quality cocktails for your customers. It also demonstrates that you understand the importance of precision in bartending and that you’re willing to put in the extra effort to get things right.

In short, using a jigger is a simple but effective way to step up your bartending game. Not only does it improve accuracy and consistency, but it also adds a touch of professionalism to your craft.

Jigger Sizes and Conversions

How many ounces in a jigger?

How Many Ounces in a Jigger?

If you’re new to bartending or crafting cocktails at home, understanding the measurements involved can be overwhelming. One of the most common measuring tools used in cocktail making is the jigger, which allows for accurate and consistent pours. But how many ounces are in a jigger?

Traditionally, a jigger refers to a double-sided measuring tool with two different capacities on each side, often referred to as the “small” and “large” sides. The most common jigger sizes are the 1 oz, 1.5 oz, and 2 oz jiggers.

The 1 oz jigger is typically used for smaller drinks, such as shots or stirred cocktails like a Negroni or Manhattan. The 1.5 oz jigger is the standard size and is suitable for most cocktails, including shaken drinks like margaritas or daiquiris. The 2 oz jigger is ideal for larger cocktails or drinks that require more volume, such as tiki cocktails or punch bowls.

It’s important to note that the actual capacity of a jigger may vary slightly depending on the brand or style. Some jiggers may even have additional markings or measurements on the inside to allow for more precise pouring.

Converting between jigger sizes and other measurements, such as ounces or milliliters, can sometimes be tricky. As a general rule, 1 oz is equal to about 30 milliliters or 2 tablespoons, while 1.5 oz is equal to about 45 milliliters or 3 tablespoons. The 2 oz jigger is equivalent to approximately 60 milliliters or 4 tablespoons.

To avoid confusion, it’s always helpful to have a conversion chart or calculator on hand when working with different measurements or recipes.

In summary, understanding the different jigger sizes and conversions is essential for achieving accurate and consistent results in cocktail making. Whether you’re a professional bartender or a home mixologist, mastering the art of measuring with a jigger is sure to take your drinks to the next level.

Converting between ounces, milliliters, and tablespoons

Converting between ounces, milliliters, and tablespoons is an essential skill for any bartender or mixologist. Fortunately, it’s a relatively straightforward process that can be mastered with a little practice and some helpful tools.

One of the best resources for converting cocktail measurements is a conversion table, which typically lists common measurements in both ounces and milliliters, as well as equivalent measurements in tablespoons and other units. These tables are widely available online, and many bartending books and training manuals also include them.

When it comes to converting jigger sizes, things can get a little more complicated. In most cases, a jigger will be labeled with its capacity in either ounces or milliliters (e.g., 1 oz, 2 oz, 30 mL, etc.). However, some jiggers may have slightly different capacities based on their shape or design, so it’s important to double-check before making any conversions.

To convert between jigger sizes, you’ll need to use a standard conversion factor based on the size of your jigger. For example, if you’re using a 1.5 oz jigger and want to know how many milliliters that is, you would multiply 1.5 by 29.5735 (the number of milliliters in one fluid ounce) to get approximately 44.36 mL.

Another useful tool for converting between measurements is a digital kitchen scale. By weighing out ingredients in grams or ounces, you can easily achieve precise measurements without the need for complex conversions. This is particularly helpful when working with larger quantities or less common measurements.

Ultimately, the key to successful conversions is practice and familiarity with the various measuring tools and units. By mastering these skills, you’ll be able to create consistently delicious cocktails every time – no matter what units or measurements you’re working with.

Measuring without a Jigger

The Free Pour Method

The Free Pour Method: Mastering the Art of Pouring Cocktails

If you’ve ever watched an experienced bartender whip up a drink, you’ve probably noticed how effortlessly they pour the ingredients into the shaker or mixing glass. This is known as the free pour method, and it’s a technique that takes years of practice to master.

What is the Free Pour Method?

The free pour method is a bartending technique where the bartender pours liquid ingredients directly from the bottle into the shaker or mixing glass without using a jigger or other measuring tool. Instead, they rely on their muscle memory and visual cues to pour the correct amount of each ingredient.

Why Use the Free Pour Method?

While using a jigger is essential for beginners, many bartenders prefer the free pour method because of its speed, convenience, and showmanship. Once mastered, the free pour allows bartenders to create complex cocktails quickly and efficiently, impressing customers with their speed and accuracy.

The Importance of Training

However, mastering the free pour method requires extensive training. Bartenders must develop a keen sense of rhythm, timing, and balance to pour the right amount of liquid every time. They also need to learn how to pour consistently, even when working with different bottle shapes and sizes.

Apprenticeships and bartending schools can provide aspiring bartenders with the necessary training to master the free pour. Many programs offer hands-on training with experienced professionals, allowing students to practice and refine their technique under expert guidance.

Reliability of the Free Pour Method

Despite its reputation as a flashy technique, the free pour method is surprisingly reliable. Experienced bartenders can pour within a fraction of an ounce, often more accurately than with a jigger. This is because the free pour method allows the bartender to adjust the pour mid-stream, compensating for any over-pouring or under-pouring that may occur.


If you’re looking to up your bartending game, learning the free pour method is a valuable skill to have. While it takes time and practice to master, the end result is a faster, more efficient, and more impressive style of bartending. With proper training and dedication, anyone can learn to free pour like a pro.

The Counting Method

The Counting Method

When it comes to making cocktails, the counting method is another popular way to measure ingredients without using a jigger. This method involves counting how many seconds you pour a liquid, based on a predetermined count system.

While the free pour method relies heavily on bartenders’ instincts, the counting method requires some training to achieve accuracy and consistency. It’s important to establish a count system that works for you and stick to it in order to ensure precision in your measurements.

One common counting method is the “four-count” system, in which each count is equivalent to one-quarter of an ounce. For example, if you need to pour one ounce of a certain ingredient, you would count to four while pouring. However, this is just one example of a counting system, and different bartenders may use variations or develop their own methods.

Accuracy is key when using the counting method, as even small deviations can affect the taste and balance of a cocktail. Training is essential in order to develop consistent pouring skills and refine your counting system. Many bartending schools offer courses specifically focused on mastering the counting method.

Overall, while the counting method does require some training and practice to achieve accuracy, it can be a reliable alternative to using a jigger. Bartenders who have mastered this method can quickly and efficiently create delicious cocktails that are consistent in taste and quality.



When it comes to making a cocktail, the importance of accurate measurements cannot be overstated. However, not everyone has access to a jigger or may choose to eyeball their measurements instead. While this method may seem convenient and effortless, it poses significant risks and inaccuracies.

The first and most obvious risk of eyeballing is inconsistent measurements. Without using precise tools like a jigger or measuring cup, it is easy to pour too much or too little of an ingredient. This can lead to imbalanced flavors and ruin the taste of the cocktail.

Inaccurate measurements can also result in a drink that is too strong or too weak. This can have serious consequences, especially if the bartender is serving alcohol to customers who are driving or operating heavy machinery.

Furthermore, eyeballing introduces a higher risk of cross-contamination between different ingredients. If the same jigger or measuring cup is used for all liquids, it can lead to unwanted flavors and mixtures.

While there are some experienced bartenders who can confidently eyeball measurements with reasonable accuracy, it is not recommended for beginner or amateur bartenders. It is always best to use proper measuring tools to ensure consistency and safety.

In conclusion, while eyeballing may seem like a convenient way to measure ingredients, it poses significant risks and inaccuracies that can ruin the taste of your cocktails and cause harm to your customers. For best results, invest in quality measuring tools like a jigger or measuring cup to make sure you get the perfect cocktail every time.
The jigger may seem like a small tool, but it plays a big role in creating a perfect cocktail. By understanding the different types of jiggers and their sizes, you can ensure accuracy and consistency in your drinks. Whether you’re a professional bartender or a home mixologist, using a jigger is essential for achieving the right balance of flavors in your cocktails.

While there are alternative methods to measuring without a jigger, they come with risks and potential inaccuracies. Using a jigger shows professionalism and attention to detail, which is crucial in the world of cocktails. Remember, the next time you order a drink at a bar or make one at home, the jigger is more than just a tiny cup – it’s a key ingredient in creating the perfect cocktail experience.

So, whether you prefer a classic 1 oz jigger or a larger 2 oz jigger, knowing how many ounces are in a jigger will help you create the perfect cocktail every time. Cheers to measuring up!

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