How much rice is there in a single bag? We solve equations you never even knew existed.
Rice—a satisfyingly substantial grain that’s high in carbs and protein and low in fat—is a staple food in many cultures. From Italian risotto and Spanish rice to Japanese sushi and Chinese fried rice, it can be sent to the table as a main course, an ingredient in another dish, or as a side.
But how much of it is there in a single bag? And what does this equate to in terms of single servings? We help you find out.
In most supermarkets, rice is sold in bags, boxes, and plastic jars weighing 16, 32, or 64 ounces. Rice also comes in large bags weighing 20 and 50 pounds.
“That’s all good,” some of you may be thinking, “but how many servings of rice is that?” We’ve done the math so that you won’t have to. So take a peek below to find the answer out.
As a general rule of thumb, 1 U.S. cup of white, long-grain rice weighs about 7 ounces and yields 2-3 servings of rice. This means that:
- A 16-ounce bag will yield enough cooked rice for 6 servings;
- A 32-ounce bag will yield enough cooked rice for for 12 servings;
- A 64-ounce bag will yield enough cooked rice for for 24 servings;
- A 20-pound bag of rice is enough to fill 45 U.S. cups of rice, which yields roughly 120 to 135 servings;
- A 50-pound bag is enough to fill 114 cups of rice, which yields anywhere from 270 to 285 servings.
The exact amount, of course, depends on the variety of rice at hand and the serving size in your household.
Different rice varieties absorb different amounts of water. They also have varied cooking times, which affects the end result. Households that eat smaller portions cook less rice or have more rice left over.
How Much Does a Pound of Rice Cost?
According to the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, the U.S. city average of white, long-grain rice was 83 cents per pound in January 2022, up 4 cents from 79 cents per pound one year ago.
Since 1 pound of rice yields 2 U.S. cups of rice, the average cost of a cup of rice in January 2022 was 41.5 cents per pound. And, since 1 cup of rice yields 2-3 servings, the average cost of a portion of an adult serving of white, long-grain rice was 16.6 cents (excluding seasonings, any other ingredients, and cooking costs).
Generally speaking, the price of a bag of rice depends on your state and city, the retailer you buy your groceries from, and the brand and variety of rice you eat. Big cities have higher prices than rural areas, and white rice is less expensive than brown rice.
Larger bags of rice cost less per pound. However, they take longer to use up, presenting challenges for home cooking. Rice has the tendency to go stale and develop off flavors during storage, so it’s recommended that you buy it in small quantities and use it up promptly.