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What is a Jigger Measurement? Complete Guide (2024 Updated)

What is a Jigger Measurement

A jigger is a standard bar item used to measure drinks. This dual-sided tool is useful in reducing overpouring and ensuring consistent drink-making. 

However, you must double-check the jigger measurements to ensure they’re exactly the right size of pour you need when making cocktails.

Jiggers can vary in size, depending on the recipe.

But for starters, you might need clarification about what is a jigger measurement. If this is your dilemma, keep reading to learn more. 

What is a Jigger Measurement & How It’s Measured?

Pouring Liquor on a Jigger

Jigger is composed of two varying measuring amounts – one side called the “pony shot,” and either side called the “jigger shot” or “fluid jigger.”

It’s an essential measurement for making certain cocktails with varied recipes and measurements.

Jiggers vary in size. Its standard size measures 1.5 ounces x 0.75 ounces. It also uses 2 ounces x 1-ounce measurements, which are also commonly used. 

Most Common Jigger Measurements

1 oz & 2 oz 

One common jigger measurement used in most cocktail recipes is the 1 ounce x 2 ounces. 

The smaller number (or smaller end), “1 ounce,” is called the pony shot, while the bigger number, “2 ounces,” is the jigger shot. 

When making drinks and using the larger end of the jigger, your pour will be 2 ounces. 

1.5 oz & 0.75 oz

This is the standard jigger measurement used in countless cocktail recipes. 

The same as above, the bigger end, “1.5 ounces,” is the jigger shot, and the smaller end, “0.75 ounces,” is the pony shot.

If you make drinks using the larger end, the pour will be 1.5 ounces—the standard shot size. 

Different Types Of Jiggers & Their Measurements 

Double Jiggers

Stainless SteeL Double Cocktail Jigger

The double or basic bar jigger is the traditional type of jigger. It has an hourglass shape and comes in various sizes.

This is the most common type of cocktail tool that you’ll find in bars. Double jiggers are useful in various beverages. 

You might need a couple of double jiggers when you plan on stocking your home bar. Typical sizes include 1 ounce and 2 ounces and 1.5 ounces & 0.75 ounces. 

Japanese Jiggers

Man  Holding Japanese Jigger

The tall and slim Japanese jiggers are made with a sleek design ideal for making drinks.

Although Japanese jiggers can be used for various beverages, using them on cocktails requires some dexterity. 

Since this type is thin, it’s easy to pour from. But it can be hard to pour the syrup and liquid into it. 

The most common sizes of Japanese jiggers are 1 ounce & 2 ounces. 

Stepped Jigger

Stainless Stepped Jigger

Stepped jigger is a modern style of jigger that is more practical and measures more ounces and milliliters than its traditional counterpart.

The easiest way to get the right amount of beads in a cocktail is with a stepped jigger, ideal for those new to the trade. 

Its design features various preferred measurements on the outside and a measured step for each bead, visible from either the jigger’s top or bottom. 

The usual sizes of stepped jiggers are 0.5 ounces to 2 ounces. 

Bell Jigger

Hand Holding Bell Jigger

The bell jigger is a bit heavier than the Japanese jigger but has a vintage-style body and is easier to hold. It makes a great addition to any cocktail set.

The wide-mouth design of this jigger makes it ideal for quick pouring, and it has a hard edge to prevent drippings. It also has measurement lines that go down to a single-bar spoon.

The measurements of bell jiggers are 0.25 ounces to 2 ounces. 

How Many Ounces Are In A Jigger? 

An alcohol jigger usually contains 1.5 ounces or 44 milliliters.

The standard jigger size measures 1.5 ounces (on one side of an hourglass) and 0.75 ounces on the other side. 

But you can use jiggers of different measurements—from 0.5 ounces x 1 ounce to 1.5 ounces x 2 ounces. 

How Many Ounces Is A 2-Sided Jigger? 

Cocktail Bar Jigger

The ounce of a 2-sided jigger is also 1.5 ounces x 0.75 ounces, which is the standard size. But it can also come with 2 ounces x 1 ounce. 

What Numbers Mean On Jigger Measurement 

The number on the jigger measurement represents the liquid that they hold. 

For instance, a larger jigger typically has 1.5 ounces of liquid, while a smaller one typically holds around 0.75 ounces. 

When referring to a shot or a type of lure known as a “jigger,” it usually means the standard size (1.5 ounces).

Should You Fill A Jigger To The Top? 

Different Kinds of Jjigger

Yes, you should fill the jigger to the top when measuring spirits so the liquid forms a meniscus [1] or convex arc. Doing so can give you the most precise measurement. 

Importance of Jigger Measurement In Cocktail Making 

Using a jigger is the most accurate way to make a cocktail [2], as it ensures that the drink will be the same every time due to the proper measurements.

“You mix two jiggers of Scotch to one jigger of Metrecal. So far, I’ve lost five pounds and my driver’s license.”

— Rocky Bridges, Baseball Player

Know that a mismeasurement can lead to a variation that doesn’t taste right.

But when it comes to choosing the type of jigger to use, it’s crucial to find one that fits your comfort level.

FAQs

How many ounces is a jigger shot?

A jigger shot usually measures 1.5 ounces (or 1 ½ ounces, 44 milliliters). This is the standard jigger size—0.75 ounces on either side. 

Is a jigger 1 or 2 shots?

A jigger is one standard shot since a standard shot is 1.5 ounces–the same as the standard size of a jigger. But the shots will depend on the type and size of the jigger.

What Is a Jigger Measurement Used for in Bartending?

A jigger is a measuring tool used in bartending to accurately pour specific amounts of liquid ingredients, ensuring consistency in cocktails.

How Much Liquid Does a Jigger Hold?

Typically, a jigger has two sides, with one holding approximately 1.5 ounces (45 milliliters) and the other holding about 0.75 ounces (22 milliliters).

Why Is Using a Jigger Important in Bartending?

Using a jigger ensures precise measurements, resulting in consistent flavor profiles for cocktails. It helps maintain quality and balance in mixed drinks.

What Are the Two Sides of a Jigger Called?

The larger side of a jigger is often referred to as the “large” or “full” measure, while the smaller side is known as the “small” or “half” measure.

Can You Use a Jigger for Non-Alcoholic Drinks?

Yes, a jigger can be used to measure ingredients in non-alcoholic beverages, such as mocktails and specialty coffee drinks, to maintain flavor balance.

How Do Bartenders Use a Jigger?

Bartenders typically hold the jigger by the handle and pour the desired liquid into one side, ensuring it fills to the brim, then pour it into the mixing glass or shaker.

Can You Use a Jigger for Baking and Cooking?

Yes, a jigger can be useful for precise measurements in baking and cooking, particularly when recipes call for specific amounts of liquid ingredients.

Are There Different Types of Jiggers?

Yes, jiggers come in various materials, including stainless steel, copper, and plastic. Some have a different shape or design but serve the same purpose.

On A Final Note 

Jiggers are handy tools every bar should have in its back-end inventory.

Regardless of size and type, these tools will help ensure you always pour properly, considering the cocktail’s required amount. 

If you want consistency with your cocktails, understanding the jigger measurements helps you achieve quality drinks whenever needed. 

References:

  1. https://www.esquire.com/food-drink/drinks/a971/esq0606barsrev-107-4/ 
  2. https://greatist.com/eat/whats-the-origin-of-the-word-cocktail 
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