The Baker’s Percentage
Determining a baker's percentage is like a fun math problem. Now, hear us out, because we know that math isn’t fun for everyone. To us, what makes determining bakers percentages fun, is that as we determine the different quantities, we better understand the recipe and the process behind it AND we are able to determine precise measurements that help us achieve the best results possible.
Precision:
A Baker's Percentage isn’t like your standard equation because the total recipe doesn’t come out to be 100%. Instead, with a Baker's Percentage, the flour is the constant and is always set as 100% so therefore, the total dough is always greater than 100%. With flour as the constant, each following ingredient is a percentage of that flour. This allows you to determine precise measurements (like hydration!) for a recipe of any size. When measuring ingredients, we always recommend using metric measurements (grams and milliliters) instead of imperial measurements (pounds and ounces) for increased accuracy!
Flexibility:
We often come across recipes with final results that aren’t quite the quantity we are looking for. Sometimes we want to make a dozen bagels instead of 8, sometimes we just want to make 2 loaves of bread instead of 6… Now, this is where understanding a Baker’s Percentage comes in handy. A Baker’s Percentage gives us the flexibility to accurately adapt and scale recipes to meet our needs.
Understanding a Baker's Percentage:
When working with a Baker's Percentage, it’s important to use the same measurements for each ingredient.
Example: I want to determine the percentages in my current pizza dough recipe.
Okay, so let’s say your current dough recipe looks like:
Ingredients 
Weight 
Flour 
1000g (1kg) 
Water 
600g 
Salt 
30g 
Dry Yeast 
3g 
TOTAL 
1633g 
To determine percentages, set the flour at 100%.
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
1000g (1kg) 
100% 
Water 
600g 
x 
Salt 
30g 
x 
Dry Yeast 
3g 
x 
TOTAL 
1633g 
x 
Next, divide the weight of each ingredient by the weight of the flour and multiply by 100 to get percentages.
Water = (ingredient weight / flour weight) x 100
600 / 1000 = .60 x 100 = 60%
So, your percentages would come out to:
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
1000g (1kg) 
100% 
Water 
600g 
60% 
Salt 
30g 
3% 
Dry Yeast 
3g 
.3% 
TOTAL 
1633g 
163.3% 
Example: I have 700g of flour and want to determine the quantities of the rest of the ingredients needed to make my pizza dough, using the same recipe percentages above.
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
700g 
100% 
Water 
X 
60% 
Salt 
X 
3% 
Dry Yeast 
X 
.3% 
TOTAL 
X 
163.3% 
To determine the weight of the rest of your ingredients, divide the percentage by 100, and multiply it by the weight of your flour.
Water = (% / 100) x flour weight
60 / 100 = .6 x 700 = 420
Do this same equation for the rest of your ingredients.
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
700g 
100% 
Water 
420g 
60% 
Salt 
21g 
3% 
Dry Yeast 
2.1g 
.3% 
TOTAL 
1143.1 
163.3% 
To check your work, you can do the equations from the first example.
Water = (weight / 700) x 100
420/700 = .6 x 100 = 60%
Example: I want to make 10 dough balls that are 260g each.
In some cases, you might know what you want your desired quantity to be but you might not know how much of each ingredient you will need to produce it.
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
X 
100% 
Water 
X 
60% 
Salt 
X 
3% 
Dry Yeast 
X 
.3% 
TOTAL 
2600g (10 balls x 260g) 
163.3% 
To determine the quantities of each ingredient, we need to calculate 1%. To do this, divide the total weight from the total percent.
(2600 / 163.3) = 15.9
So, each 1% is equivalent to 15.9g.
To determine the weights needed for your recipe, multiply the % by 15.9
Flour = (100 x 15.9) = 1590g, Water = (60 x 15.9) = 954g, etc.
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
1590g 
100% 
Water 
954g 
60% 
Salt 
47.7g 
3% 
Yeast 
4.77g 
.3% 
TOTAL 
2,596.47g 
163.3% 
This recipe will leave you with 9 dough balls that are 260g and 1 dough ball that is 256g (or 10 dough balls that are 259g). If your dough is slightly under, you can always round up from 15.9 to 16.
Example: I want to make 6 dough balls that are 280g each using a slightly different recipe.
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
X 
100% 
Water 
X 
58% 
Salt 
X 
2.5% 
Dry Yeast 
X 
.3% 
TOTAL 
1680g (6 balls x 280g) 
160.8% (total of all percentages) 
Like in the previous example, to determine the quantities of each ingredient, we need to calculate 1%. To do this, divide the total weight from the total percent.
(1680 / 160.8) = 10.4
So, each 1% is equivalent to 10.4g
To determine the weights needed for your recipe, multiply the % by 10.4
Flour = (100 x 10.4) = 1040g, Water = (60 x 10.4) = 624g, etc.
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
1040g 
100% 
Water 
603.2g 
58% 
Salt 
26g 
2.5% 
Yeast 
3.12g 
.3% 
TOTAL 
1672.32g 
160.8% 
This recipe will leave you with 6 dough balls that are 278g each or 5 dough balls that are 280g and 1 that is 272g.
Example: I want to scale my recipe up from 1040g flour to 1500g flour using the recipe above.
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
1500g 
100% 
Water 
X 
58% 
Salt 
X 
2.5% 
Yeast 
X 
.3% 
TOTAL 
X 
160.8% 
To scale the recipe up, divide each percent from the new flour weight.
Ingredient weight = (ingredient percent / 100) x flour weight
Water = 58 / 100 x 1500 = 870
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
1500g 
100% 
Water 
870g 
58% 
Salt 
37.5g 
2.5% 
Yeast 
4.5g 
.3% 
TOTAL 
2412g 
160.8% 
Example: What do I do if a recipe calls for Whole Wheat Flour AND 00 Flour or I want to add Whole Wheat?
If a recipe calls for more than one type of flour, or you want to mix in another, remember that the total flour needs to equal 100%.
Let’s say you want to add some whole wheat flour to your pizza dough using the recipe in the previous example. Maybe you want it to be 20% whole wheat so you get some of the texture and flavor, but without it becoming overpowering.
If you know the total flour amount is 1500g, all you need to do is multiply 1500 by 80% and 20% respectively:
00 Flour: 1500 / .80 = 1200
Whole Wheat Flour: 1500 / .20 = 300
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Whole Wheat Flour 
300g 
20% 
00 Flour 
1200g 
80% 
Water 
870g 
58% 
Salt 
37.5g 
2.5% 
Yeast 
4.5g 
.3% 
TOTAL 
2412g 
160.8% 
Below, we broke out some very generalized Baker’s Percentages for some direct recipes of our favorite foods: Neapolitan Pizza, New York Style Pizza, and Focaccia!
Neapolitan Pizza with Caputo "00" Pizzeria Flour and Caputo Lievito Dry Yeast:
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
1000g 
100% 
Water 
600g 
60% 
Salt 
30g 
3% 
Yeast 
3g 
.3% 
TOTAL 
1633g 
163.3% 
NY Style Pizza with Caputo "00" Americana Flour and Caputo Lievito Dry Yeast:
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
1000g 
100% 
Water 
600g 
60% 
Salt 
30g 
3% 
Yeast 
3g 
.3% 
EVOO 
20g 
2% 
TOTAL 
1633g 
165.3% 
Focaccia with Caputo Nuvola Super Flour and Caputo Lievito Dry Yeast (80% Biga, 80% Hydration)
Ingredients 
Weight (Biga) 
Percent (Biga) 
Weight (Final Dough) 
Percent (Final Dough) 
Total Weight 
Total Percent 
Flour 
800g 
100% 
200g 
100% 
1000g 
100% 
Water 
360g 
45% 
440g 
220% 
800g 
80% 
Yeast 
3g 
.38% 


3g 
.3% 
Salt 


25g 
12.5% 
25g 
2.5% 
EVOO 


20g 
10% 
20g 
2% 
Sugar 


10g 
5% 
10g 
1% 
Biga 


1163g 
581.5% 

62.5% 
Total 
1163g 
145.38% 
1858 
929% 
1858g 
185.8% 
As you may have noticed, some of our recipes call for preferments. When experimenting, we recommend gradually increasing or decreasing the preferment amount until you achieve your desired results. Let’s say you want to decrease the above recipe to a 60% preferment. Here’s how you could determine the correct quantities for your recipe:
Ingredients 
Weight (Biga) 
Percent (Biga) 
Weight (Final Dough) 
Percent (Final Dough) 
Total Weight 
Total Percent 
Flour 
767g 
100% 
233g 
100% 
1000g 
100% 
Water 
345g 
45% 
455g 
220% 
800g 
80% 
Yeast 
2.8g 
.38% 


3g 
.3% 
Salt 


25g 
12.5% 
25g 
2.5% 
EVOO 


20g 
10% 
20g 
2% 
Sugar 


10g 
5% 
10g 
1% 
Biga 


1114.8 
557.4% 

60% 
Total 
1114.8 
145.38% 
1857.8 
904.9 
1858 
185.8% 
Okay, now let’s say you want to add a 20% poolish to our NY Style pizza recipe. We already know the percentages for the overall Neapolitan recipe, but if we didn’t, calculating them would be our first step and we could do that by determining the dough ball size and quantity, and then calculating the 1%.
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
1000g 
100% 
Water 
600g 
60% 
Salt 
30g 
3% 
Yeast 
3g 
.3% 
EVOO 
20g 
2% 
TOTAL 
1653g 
165.3% 
Seeing as we already have the quantities for each ingredient, we now need to determine our poolish. We want our poolish to be 20% of the overall flour, so to do that, we take the weight of the flour and multiply it by 20%.
Poolish Flour = flour weight x poolish %
Poolish Flour = 1000 x .20 = 200g
Poolish Ingredients 
Poolish Weight 
Poolish Percent 
Flour 
200g 
100% 
Water 
X 
X 
Yeast 
X 
X 
TOTAL 
X 
X 
Now we just need to determine the rest of the poolish quantities. We know a poolish is 1:1 (100% hydration), so we use the same amount of water as we do flour. The yeast is generally around .2% of the amount of flour in the biga, so in this case we will multiply 200g x .002.
Poolish Ingredients 
Poolish Weight 
Poolish Percent 
Flour 
200g 
100% 
Water 
200g 
100% 
Yeast 
.4g 
0.2% 
TOTAL 
400.4 
200.2% 
Now, that we have our poolish quantities, we need to go back and adjust our final dough. To determine our new quantities, we subtract the ingredients in the poolish from the overall recipe. So for the flour, instead we subtract 200g from the original 1000g.
1000g200g=800g flour for the final dough. We repeat this for the water and yeast.
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
800g 
100% 
Water 
400g 
50% 
Salt 
30g 
3% 
Yeast 
2.6g 
.3% 
EVOO 
20g 
2% 
TOTAL 
1252.6g 
155.3% 
So, when we add the poolish into our final dough, we go back to the original weight! Because the percentage is always based on the flour weight and in this case we didn’t add the flour in the poolish to the flour in the final dough, so our percentages have changed.
Ingredients 
Weight 
Percent 
Flour 
800g 
100% 
Water 
400g 
50% 
Salt 
30g 
3% 
Yeast 
2.6g 
.3% 
EVOO 
20g 
2% 
Poolish 
400.4 
50% 
TOTAL 
1653g 
205.3% 
Once you understand a baker’s percentage, you’ll be able to experiment with recipes and adjust recipes to meet your desired yield!
Happy Baking!