Baking Soda vs. Baking Powder: What’s the Difference...

时间:2023-05-27 10:44:40  热度:0°C

Difference between Baking Powder and Baking Soda

Baking powder and baking soda are both leavening agents/ which means they cause dough or batter to expand by releasing gas/ Yeast is another leavening agent you might know about/

Even air (caused by vigorous whipping and mixing) or steam (created by heat in the oven) can be leavening agents/ depending on the baking method/

Baking soda and baking powder are more common in recipes for cookies/ cakes/ and quick breads/ and they are responsible for giving baked goods the light/ fluffy/ porous structure that makes them delicious/ If you’re wondering/ “what makes bread rise/ baking soda or baking powder?” the answer is both/ depending on the recipe/

Even though baking soda and baking powder both perform the same job in baking/ they are chemically different and cannot be substituted one for one in recipes/ That’s because the way they react and create air differs/ Not knowing the difference between baking soda and baking powder can cause your baked goods to go flat/ Literally/

Baking Soda vs/ Baking Powder in Recipes

Baking Soda

Baking soda is pure sodium bicarbonate/ a fine white powder that has many uses/ You may wonder about bicarbonate of soda vs/ baking soda/ but they are simply alternate terms for the same ingredient/ If your recipe calls for bicarbonate of soda/ it is simply referring to baking soda/

Baking soda is a quick-acting leavening agent/ As soon as pure baking soda is blended with moisture and an acidic ingredient/ such as honey/ buttermilk/ molasses/ chocolate/ yogurt/ sour cream/ brown sugar/ or cocoa/ a chemical reaction occurs that produces bubbles of carbon dioxide/ These bubbles are what gives the light texture you want in baking/

The trick with baking soda in recipes is that the reaction that creates the bubbles is immediate/ so you want to get the batter or dough into the oven quickly/ before all the bubbles dissipate/ That’s why baking soda is used for “quick” recipes for biscuits or breads/ There’s no waiting around for yeast to do its work and dough to rise/

Baking Powder

Baking powder/ on the other hand/ is a blended mixture containing baking soda/ acidic salts or dry acids/ and often a starch such as corn starch/ Baking powder typically contains tartaric acid/ more commonly known as cream of tartar/

Cream of tartar is a dry acid/ so when you use baking powder/ you are adding the acidic ingredient that will produce the carbon dioxide bubbles at the same time/ Typically/ baking powder is called for in recipes that do not otherwise have an acidic ingredient/ such as molasses or buttermilk/

As with baking soda/ the purpose of baking powder is to create air bubbles that give your baked goods their light/ airy texture/ There are two types of baking powder/ single action and double action/

  • Single action baking powder creates the carbon dioxide bubbles upon contact with moisture/ similar to baking soda/ Also similarly/ that quick reaction means you need to get the batter or dough into the oven quickly/
  • Double action baking powder is more commonly used/ and has two leavening periods (hence the double action)/ The first surge of air bubbles is created when the alkaline baking soda and the acidic cream of tartar are combined with the recipe’s milk or water/The second leavening period happens when the ingredients reach a certain temperature/ as occurs during baking in your oven/

Baking Soda and Baking Powder Conversions

Baking soda is a much more powerful leavener than baking powder/ about 3-4 times as strong/ That is why you will notice that recipes usually call for a small amount of baking soda/ typically ¼ teaspoon per 1 cup of flour/ Do not make the mistake of trying to substitute equal parts baking soda for baking powder in recipes/ Your baked goods will have no leavening/ be quite flat/ and have an altered taste/ Instead/ follow these conversions for baking soda and baking powder/

Baking Soda for Baking Powder Conversion

If you don’t have baking powder and you’re trying to substitute baking soda/ you will need much less baking soda than the amount of baking powder the recipe originally called for/ Too much baking soda in a recipe can give your baked goods a metallic or soapy taste/ so be careful with your amounts in conversions/

As a rule of thumb/ 1 teaspoon of baking powder is equivalent to ¼ teaspoon of baking soda in terms of leavening power/ But there’s more you must do/

Remember/ baking powder comes with its own acid included/ and it s the reaction between the acidic cream of tartar/ the alkaline baking soda/ and water that creates the leavening action and the air bubbles you need/ If you’re substituting baking soda for baking powder/ you also need to add an acid to the recipe/ If you do not/ you’ll be left with that metallic or soapy taste and flat/ dense/ hard baked goods/ Try this instead/

1 tsp/ baking powder = ¼ tsp/ baking soda plus ½ tsp/ cream of tartar (1 part baking soda to 2 parts cream of tartar)/

What if you don’t have cream of tartar/ either? You can still do a baking powder to baking soda conversion by adding another acid to create the carbon dioxide bubble-releasing action/

1 tsp/ baking powder = ¼ tsp/ of baking soda plus 1 tsp/ of lemon juice or white vinegar (1 tsp/ vinegar or lemon juice for every ½ tsp/ cream of tartar)

Vinegar and lemon juice are acids/ which will combine with the baking soda to create the leavening action/ Lemon juice or vinegar will affect the taste of the batter somewhat/ so you might want to compensate by adding a bit more sugar (e/g// 1-2 tablespoons) or just go with a slightly tangier taste/

Baking Powder for Baking Soda Conversion

If your recipe calls for baking soda and all you have on hand is baking powder/ the conversion is a little easier/ Remember that baking soda is 3-4 times stronger than baking powder/ so you’ll need a lot more baking powder to get the same leavening action/

As a general rule/ triple the amount of baking powder for the amount of baking soda called for in a recipe/ For example/

1 teaspoon baking soda = 3 teaspoons baking powder/

A recipe that called for baking soda already had an acid/ such as cocoa/ molasses/ or honey included to neutralize the alkaline baking soda and create the air bubbles/ Baking powder had the cream of tartar acid included anyway/ so you’ll be fine with leavening/

Lessons Learned About Baking Soda vs/ Baking Powder

Some people wonder/ “is cream of tartar baking soda?” and after reading this article/ you can tell them/ No/ cream of tartar is not the same as baking soda/ but it is what you add to baking soda to get baking powder/

In sum/ here are the basics/

  • Baking soda and baking powder are not the same/
  • Sodium bicarbonate and bicarbonate of soda are other names for baking soda/
  • Baking powder is made of baking soda plus cream of tartar and cornstarch/
  • Baking powder can be substituted for baking soda by tripling the amount of baking powder/
  • Baking soda can be substituted for baking powder by dividing the amount of baking powder needed by 4 and adding twice that amount of cream of tartar/
  • Baking soda or baking powder are essential for your baked goods to come out light/ airy/ and with the right texture/
  • Every home needs at least one box of ARM &/ HAMMER baking soda at all times/ for your baking and household needs/

What if you’re baking and you don’t have either baking soda or baking powder on hand? A run to the store or asking a neighbor are your only options at that point/ There are baking hacks/ but you need some basics/ such as ARM &/ HAMMER baking soda/ on hand to work with/

Best of luck in baking/ and check out a couple of our top dessert recipes that use both ingredients/

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