How Many Quarts in A Pitcher? [Here’re the All You Need to Know]

Ever heard the proverb ‘Little pitchers have big ears’? What it means is children are not always as naive as they seem. Whatever you do around them, something might spill over into their little head, just like we do with pitchers. From storing water to oil and everything in between, these things have been extensively used for centuries. 

Even though one might confuse them with pitchers in baseball, thanks to the internet, the word comes from the 13th-century English word ‘Picher,’ meaning earthen jug.

However, they are the same thing. The jug is a more used word outside of North America. The term pitcher of beer is more frequently used than a pitcher of water, although they were mainly used for carrying water in ancient times.

They are so often used in storing liquids it often comes to mind how many quarts in a pitcher? Like everything beautiful in life, they come in all shapes and sizes.

The History of Pitcher

How many quarts in a pitcher

The earliest mention of this word can be found in the bible. In the depiction, Rebekah came to Abraham with a water vessel of water, assumed to a pitcher. There are also other mentions of it in the bible.

The most ancient artifact predates 8th AD. Archaeologists discovered it in Egypt around the 1930s. The object displayed in Egypt’s Museum of Islamic Arts is called The Pitcher of Marwan Ibn Mohammad. 

Their presence was also noted in China during the rule of the Tang dynasty. They were commonly used as glazed earthenware. Mostly, illusions of Silk Road, Persian textiles, and diverse Chinese cities were depicted on them. Though upper classes of China treasured them at those times, these vessels became a commonplace artifact regardless of social classes.

How they were made

The technique is relatively easy and ancient. The potters mixed clay and water, then filtered for stones and stuff alike. Once the filtration is complete, they put onto a wheel occasionally known as ‘Potter’s lathe’ and build up the shape.

The technique is easy to describe but hard to master. It takes years of practice to make a perfect pot from the wheel. Sadly, pottery as a profession is declining due to the rise of industrialization.

Used materials

There are mainly three types of materials when making one of these. They are Clay, Ceramic, Metal, and they all have different advantages and disadvantages. It depends on the intended usages and the choice of user. Depending on what material is used in the making, how many quarts in a pitcher might have different answers.


Clay has been used to make these pots centuries. We can assume the first one was made of clay. Clay, as a building material, is very flexible. It can be bent, broken, and given any shape at relatively to temperature, also available everywhere—no wonder the first potters chose clay as a building material.

Initially, pots made of earth could not hold water for longer until they found a fixed. They started to put the object in kiln fire twice. Once for hardening another time for glazing. After glazing, it becomes waterproof.

The advantage of using clay pitchers is it keeps the liquid cold, especially water. In the Indian subcontinent, they are still in use for holding water in rural areas. How they keep the water colder is; after glazing, there are still holes in there. The holes are small enough, so the water molecule does not come out, but the air molecule can go thorough and exchange heat. These vessels are cheap and easy to build.

On the other hand, these clay pitchers are very breakable. They cannot withstand any rough use.


Ceramic also has a long history. However, ceramic was used much later than clay. It also needs a higher temperature. Pots built from this used to have illustrations on them, they still do, which is why those pots hold a place in history. They used to be a sign of upper class. Now, these pots are used everywhere, from dining to art exhibitions.

What ceramic offers more than clay is the more hardened body and canvas of an artist. Their worth depends on not only material but also the art they brought. They have extensive uses in the dining. They also make a great ice tea pitcher. Where ceramic outdone, everybody is when it comes to artistic values. You simply cannot put a price on art, can you?

Though ceramic is more rigid than clay, they are also breakable. The only difference is they can endure more force. The artistic values do not have much use if it’s intended for rough use.


Metal has been widely used in making these water vessels. They are cheap and durable. Since the industrialization, metal became available everywhere. These types of pots are used everywhere. From home to factory, they serve their purpose.

Being made of metal makes them very durable. They can handle rough uses very well. Metal pots are also cheaper than ceramic. Due to the use of metals, they can be given any shape.

The problem is that they are neither much pretty nor keep the liquid cool.


Now let’s talk about measurement, only how much liquid can they hold.

Usually, most are 2-quart pitcher, 4-quart pitcher is also available. If you don’t remember quart and its relation to other units, let us allow to take you to an elementary school tour again.

How many cups are in a quart?
Answer: Four cups.

How many quarts in a gallon?
Answer: Four quarts.

How many quarts in a pint?
Answer: 0.5 quarts.

How many ounces in a quart?
Answer: 32 ounces

Enough of unit conversion lets take a more objective look.

How many quarts are in a pitcher?
Answer: 2 or 4 quarts generally

how many ounces in a 2-quart pitcher?
Answer: 64 ounces

Hopefully, by now, we have refreshed your memory, and there are no more possible confusions.

Frequently Asked Question (FAQs)

How big is a pitcher?

They vary in sizes, most of them are big enough to carry 2 quarts or 4 quarts of liquid.

How many quarts are in a tea pitcher?

2 quarts.

How many quarts is a Tupperware pitcher?

In general, 2 quarts.

What is the difference between a pitcher and a jug?

Pitchers have a spout, jugs don’t.

Is a pitcher a gallon?

No, it is 0.50 Gallon

Is Tupperware pitcher dishwasher safe?


Bottom Line

These water carrying vessels have been aiding humans for thousands of years. In some places, they are part of the culture; in some, they are a necessity. By now, you have known enough about them than answering how many quarts in a pitcher. If you’ve noticed anything interesting, please do enlighten others.