Sometimes, I cook something from scratch, but it’s easier to just use a reference book than to calculate everything. Two foods for which I do this are pancakes and mashed potatoes.

Before using this trick I ask myself is if what I make is pretty standard. For both mashed potatoes and pancakes this is true.

When I make pancakes, I measure how big they are. Last time I did this, the pancakes were about 4 inches in diameter. Using the reference book *Calorie King* I see that a 4 inch pancake has about 11 grams of carbs. I then add up the number of pancakes my child ate and multiply by 11 to get the total carbs from pancakes. I add on the carbs for syrup and for anything else eaten to get a carb total for the meal.

I’m considering using a different reference book that should give more accurate results next time. *Think Like a Pancreas* has an appendix of carb factors, and includes a carb factor of .28 for pancakes. The weight of a pancake in grams is going to be much more precise than the diameter of something as unevenly shaped as a pancake.

This post completes the series I’m writing on tricks for carb counting. Soon I’ll start a similar series for the cases where these tricks don’t apply.