One mistake people often make while baking is adding the wrong ingredient when it comes to baking soda and baking powder. These two ingredients look identical and they are very similar. They are both leavening agents and they are both used in baking. If you are new to baking, you should learn the difference between these two very similar ingredients.
Baking soda is a base and it is also known as sodium bicarbonate and does not contain an acid. Baking powder contains sodium bicarbonate, but it also contains an acid often known as cream of tartar. In order for baking soda to do its job, you must add an acid to it. This acid causes both of these ingredients to make the dough expand.
When baking with either of these ingredients, it is important to bake them right away. They begin working as soon as they are added to other ingredients. If you are using baking soda, there are several different ingredients that you can use as the acid that is needed to make it work. Some of these include buttermilk, yogurt, chocolate or brown sugar. Cream of tartar is also used frequently for this purpose.
Baking powder will begin working as soon as it comes into contact with a liquid. The liquids used in recipes often include milk or water. Baking powder is used in cakes and breads, while cookies generally have baking soda as an ingredient. If you need to substitute banking powder for baking soda, this is how you do it. If you need 1 tsp. of baking powder, you can mix 5/8 tsp. cream of tartar with ¼ tsp. baking soda. You cannot substitute the other way around.