What Happens If You Use Baking Soda Instead of Baking Powder in a Cake?

Use Baking Soda Instead of Baking Powder in a Cake

Accidently Used Baking Soda Instead of Baking Powder? Assume you’re baking in your kitchen, adding the dry ingredients to a bowl, when you discover you’ve made a critical error. Instead of baking powder, you used baking soda! You immediately wonder if your cake has been damaged. Is that correct? Can baking powder be used for baking soda, and vice versa? Those queries will be answered right now.

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Use Baking Soda Instead of Baking Powder in a Cake
Use Baking Soda Instead of Baking Powder in a Cake

What exactly is baking soda?

Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, is a leavening agent used in baking and cooking. It is considered basic on the pH scale, thus it must be combined with something acidic in order to function properly. This is why, when baking soda comes into contact with vinegar or lemon juice, it tends to bubble and emit carbon dioxide.

Accidently Use Baking Soda Instead of Baking Powder

When baking soda and an acid are combined together, carbon dioxide is trapped, causing the batter to puff up and expand. Baking soda, on the other hand, may emit CO2 when heated.

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Using Baking Soda in Recipes

Baking soda is commonly used in recipes with soft batters, such as muffins, cakes, and pancakes. Baking soda is required for any recipe that would be liquid or fast lose its form. Because baking soda reacts fast to acid or heat (or both), it helps hold the batter together as it rises and sets. A leavening agent is not required for thicker dough.

When baking soda is used without acid, the end effect is extremely metallic.

What exactly is Baking Powder?

Baking powder is a combination of alkaline and acid substances, such as cream of tartar, sodium aluminum sulfate, calcium acid phosphate, and sodium bicarbonate, as opposed to baking soda, which is pure sodium bicarbonate. Because an acid and a base have already been combined, all that is required to initiate a chemical reaction is water or another type of liquid. Carbon dioxide is immediately released to cause batters and dough to rise.

Baking powders can be single or double acting. Tartrate or phosphate are used in single reaction powders, which react slowly. There are two reactions in a double acting baking powder. When exposed to moisture, the first occurs. The second step is to heat up the ingredients.

What Is the Best Way to Use Baking Powder?

Baking powder is used in recipes that do not contain any acids. Thicker batters, such as brownies, cookie dough, and denser breads, are examples.

Can Baking Soda Be Used in Place of Baking Powder?

Here’s a question that many home cooks and bakers ask: Is it possible to use baking soda and baking powder interchangeably? If you put them side by side in a chemical lab, you’ll see that their basic forms differ. Baking soda is approximately four times more potent than baking powder.

In other words, 1 teaspoon of baking powder is required to raise a cup of flour, whereas 14 teaspoon of baking soda is required for the same outcome. This is why you must use caution while measuring out your dry components. You also don’t want to use baking soda instead of baking powder, which might result in a doughy explosion. Meanwhile, using too little baking powder in a recipe that calls for baking soda may result in a flat cake.

Also, remember that baking powder is more than simply sodium bicarbonate and acid. It contains additional elements that may react with other components of the cake mix, resulting in a bitter or stale end product.

What Should I Do If All I Have Is Baking Soda?

What if you don’t have baking powder and just have baking soda? Fortunately, it is not the end of the world. All you need is a bit extra acid to dissolve the baking soda. Consider this: if a recipe asks for a teaspoon of baking powder, you may replace it with 12 or 14 teaspoons of baking soda and a teaspoon of anything acidic, such as vinegar or lemon juice. 1 cup brown sugar or buttermilk works great as well.

Alternatively, if you have cream of tartar on hand, you’re in luck. To make a tablespoon of baking powder, combine 2 teaspoons baking soda and 1 teaspoon cream of tartar. Then you may bake to your heart’s desire.


So, what happens if you substitute baking soda for baking powder, or vice versa? A less-than-ideal outcome. Too much baking soda may cause a mess in the oven, and even if everything bakes well, the flavor may be revolting. If you use baking powder instead of baking soda, the flavor may be bitter, and your cake or baked products may be less fluffy. Pay close attention to the recipe you’re using!

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About Cuisine Cravings Team

Hello there! Cuisine Cravings Team is a group of people who are passionate about Kitchen Ideas that developed this website to educate people on the finest kitchen techniques. We publish articles that focus on basic and fundamental cooking ideas for all levels of chefs, from beginners to specialists! Our objective is to remove the guesswork out of meal preparation so you may worry less and enjoy more! Food is an important aspect of our life, and we are excited to share our knowledge with you!

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