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Baking Soda Versus Baking Powder

Baking soda vs. baking powder – the age-old question every new baker has been asking, myself included. Here’s what you need to know about baking soda and flour to make your baked goods perfect every time.

The recipe calls for baking powder, but only baking soda is available. “Can I substitute one for the other?” you ask yourself. They look the same, right? 30 minutes later you have some cranberry orange scones that is not correct. Disappointing… Trust me, I know!

Luckily you can learn without repeating my mistakes! 😅 Baking is indeed an art, but it also has a scientific component. However, you don’t need a chemist’s degree to understand the similarities and differences between baking he powder and baking soda, and when to use them.

What is baking soda?

Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate or bicarbonate of soda) is an alkaline salt compound that produces carbon dioxide gas when mixed with an acid. It elevates your baked goods (think yogurt, honey, buttermilk, and lemon juice).

Baking soda is stronger than baking powder, 3-4 times stronger. 💪 (It gives the Arm & Hammer logo a new meaning, right?) That means you don’t need much in your recipes. In fact, if you overdo it, your baked goods will taste like metal or soap.

What is baking powder?

Baking powder contains baking soda, but there’s more to it than that. Cream of tartar provides the acidity, and cornstarch usually prevents the acidity from activating too quickly. It does not require acid to activate, but it does require heat and moisture.

Baking soda, cream of tartar and cornstarch for DIY baking powder

Baking powder and soda: what’s the difference?

  • Basic, need baking soda mix with acid It produces carbon dioxide and is used in recipes that require acidic ingredients.
  • Baking powderon the contrary, already contains acidso it is used in recipes that do not use a lot of acid.

⚠️ Here’s a caveat: baking soda and baking powder not the sameand they No replaceable.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do some recipes call for both baking soda and flour?

This has to do with chemical reactions that affect the flavor of recipes. baking sodaessentially, Neutralize acidic ingredientsSo if you’re aiming for buttermilk sourness in buttermilk biscuits, baking soda may neutralize it.
on the other hand, Baking powder may not be strong enough Perfectly puffs up biscuits. So a careful balance of both leavening agents can give your baked goods a fluffy texture while maintaining a tangy flavor profile.🙌

Is there a substitute for baking soda?

Baking powder can be used in place of baking soda, but you should use a lot more. a 1 teaspoon of powder for every ⅓ teaspoon of sodaSome recipes result in baked goods with a bitter taste. You may need to exclude acidic ingredients or substitute them to compensate. For example, replace buttermilk with whole milk.

Can baking powder be replaced with baking soda?

If you only have baking soda, you can mix it. 1 teaspoon baking soda and 2 teaspoons tartar creamand now the recipe is ready to measure.

Can I make DIY self-rising flowers?

Yes absolutely you can. Mix 1 tablespoon (12 grams) of baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon (2 grams) of salt into 2 cups (250 grams) of flour.

how to use them

  1. use baking soda Leaves baked goods when one or more acidic ingredients are included in the recipe. Examples include buttermilk, yogurt, sour cream, and vinegar.
  2. Baking powder It works best as a leavening agent if the recipe does not contain acidic ingredients like basic ingredients. vanilla cake.
  3. Together they both balance the rising factor and the acidic component.
  4. Add baking powder to your favorite spice mix when making chicken wings If you want them even crispier.
  5. Deciding which, when, and how much to use can be very complicated if it’s just experimentation. We recommend that you use established amounts.

Storage method

Baking soda and baking powder have a shelf life and can lose their effectiveness.Fill with unused powder or soda airtight container Should last anywhere at room temperature 6 months to 1 year.

How do I know if they are active? For baking soda, add 1 teaspoon to a small bowl with vinegar or lemon juice. If it’s still bubbly, it’s okay. If not, it’s time to buy a new container.

For baking powder, put 1/2 teaspoon in a small bowl and pour a little boiling water over it. A small amount of foam or a perfectly flat bowl of hot water is time to throw it away.

Kitchen pantry staples you need more in your life

  1. homemade bread crumbs
  2. all-purpose seasoning
  3. homemade buttermilk
  4. canola oil substitute
  5. homemade vanilla extract
  6. clarified butter


Well, that solves the mystery of baking powder and baking soda and has something to do with acids. who would have thought? How do you remember what leavening agent to use in your baked goods? We’d love to hear your tips in the comments section below. 🫶

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