My 4 Cup Teapot is 24 ounces?!?

Summertime Rose 2 Cup Teapot

We have a riddle for you: When is a one cup measure not 8 ounces?

Answer: When it’s measuring the volume of an English teapot!

No, really…it’s true. Okay, you’re not laughing. We have to admit it’s more confusing than funny.

For instance, you buy a 4 cup teapot for your Tea Set for Four. You expect it to be a 32 ounce teapot, 8 ounces times 4 cups. However, when it arrives it appears so small and you discover it is only 24 ounces. What gives?

Well, teapot manufacturers have a quirky measurement for teapots. It does actually make some sense and once you understand it, you’ll always know what to buy.

Summertime Rose 4 cup Teapot

The first thing to know is that manufacturers measure the volume of teapots to the rim. Of course, you won’t fill it that high, but this is quirky measurement #1.

Secondly, the cup measurement used is 6 ounces, not the standard 8 ounces. This is based on 6 ounces of tea per cup. Therefore, a 4 cup teapot will hold 24 ounces which should be enough for four tea cups. Now you see that “cup” refers to tea cups not standard measuring cups.

Remember that we don’t fill our teapots to the rim? Here’s where the measurements fall apart.

Summertime Rose 6 cup Teapot

Imagine you’re having guests for tea. Let’s say three guests. Maybe you fill your teapot with 20 ounces of water, about 2.5 standard cups. You pour for your guests and yourself, filling the tea cups about two-thirds full, 6 ounces.  So you’re pouring about 24 ounces of tea, but the teapot only made 20 ounces.  The teapot is too small!

Tip: We recommend at least a 6 cup teapot when serving four guests. A 6 cup teapot, which is 36 ounces to the rim, will brew about 32 ounces of tea in the real world.

And what about refills? Good question! The tip below is our tried and true solution for a quick second pot. It works as long as you’re using a good quality loose tea which is brewed loose in the teapot. Otherwise, you’ll need to pull the tea bags and start a new pot brewing.

Summertime Rose 8 cup Teapot

Tip: As soon as you’ve poured the first pot, refill with more hot water and pop on a tea cozy. You’ll get another steep out of your leaves and be set for refills by the time your guests are ready.

So, a small mystery is solved. We hope you’re entertained and helped, not royally confused!

Below are the teapot measurements in ounces for easy reference:

2-3 cup Teapot: 12-18 ounces (A Tea for One Teapot)

4 cup Teapot: 24 ounces (Think Tea for Two…or Three)

6 cup Teapot: 36 ounces (Perfect for a Tea Set for Four)

8 cup Teapot: 48 ounces (Hard to find, but good for a Tea Set for Six. Otherwise, we recommend you buy a second teapot.)

Are you planning a tea party? You’re invited to visit Teapots ‘n More and browse our latest selection of teapots, tea accessories, teacups, tea miniatures and elegant tea sets.

3 responses to “My 4 Cup Teapot is 24 ounces?!?

  1. Finally! I’ve been looking for a bigger teapot, and I measured my current one, and it’s about 4 cups. And in the store they have 4 cup, 6 cup, 8 cup, and 10 cup Brown Bettys (the 10 cup is huge!) I’ve been twice, and I’m convinced that the 6 cup is about the same as the one I have at home.

    And based on a 6-oz (180 mL) cup rather than a proper 8-oz (240 mL) cup … it is the same! So I want to buy the 6 cup pot!

  2. How do I order or where can I buy your teapot with the different shades of pink roses on it? (6 cup)

    Thanks, BJ

    • Hi Barbara,

      Thank you for your inquiry. The Summertime Rose Teapots in our blog post were produced by Royal Patrician which closed in 2009. However, we do sell the same Summertime Rose pattern in a 2 cup, 4 cup and 6 cup size by Heirloom Bone China. This company produces authentic English bone china tea ware made completely in England with no outsourcing of the manufacturing process. We feel their bone china is superior to Royal Patrician.

      The Heirloom Summertime Rose Bone China 6 Cup Teapot is arriving by May and can be preordered. Preorders can be made at our website, or by calling us at 800-314-1284.

      Please let me know if you have any further questions.

      Our best to you,
      Michelle Masamitsu
      Customer Service Representative

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