What is the Difference Between a Soup Spoon & a Tablespoon?

Asian soup spoon image by David Levinson from Fotolia.com

Soup spoons and tablespoons differ in shape, size and use. Although various definitions of soup spoons and tablespoons exist in the world of kitchen utensils, understanding the difference can help with proper table settings and correct cooking measurements.

Ceramic Soup Spoons

Ceramic soup spoons can be found in Asian homes but are seldom used in the United States outside of Asian restaurants. Such soup spoons, large and similar in shape to small bowls, can be used to eat soup and to present delicacies such as caviar.

Standard Soup Spoons

Standard soup spoons measure smaller than tablespoons but larger than teaspoons. The rounded soup spoons, commonly used in the United States, can be used to eat dessert, soup and cereal and can be used as small serving utensils.


A tablespoon, used to measure cooking and baking ingredients, equals three measuring teaspoons or half an ounce. Generally speaking, tablespoons come engraved with the unit of measure on the handle as part of a measuring spoon set.