i have seen recipes that will call for like 5 cups of flour sifted and such. but does that mean 5 packed cups then you sift it or does it mean sift flour until you have 5 cups of flour that has already been sifted with more air in it??
5 cups sifted flour = sift and measure
5 cups flour, sifted = measure and sift
I wouldn't measure it packed, but spoon it into your measuring cup before sifting. This is when measurement by weight comes in handy!