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Baking Soda Recipes

What Is Baking Soda?

Baking soda is an alkaline compound that’s most often used as a leavener in baked goods (i.e. it makes them rise).

What exactly is it made of? Well, baking soda also goes by the name of sodium bicarbonate because that’s the only ingredient in baking soda!

Although typically used in baking recipes, baking soda can also be used for cleaning certain surfaces, unclogging drains, or for leaving in the fridge to absorb odors. There are lots of uses for baking soda in the kitchen and around the house!

What Does Baking Soda Do?

As I mentioned above, baking soda is alkaline (a base). When it comes into contact with acidic compounds, it reacts with them to create carbon dioxide gas. This gas gets trapped in whatever batter you’re making.

When the batter is exposed to heat (baked or cooked on the stove), it firms up and those pockets of gas are trapped like that. Heat also speeds up the acid-base reaction and makes for a speedy rise!

Common acids that baking soda is often paired with in recipes include: lemon juice, vinegar, buttermilk, yogurt, cream of tartar.

Learn about 6 Baking Soda Substitutes and when to use them.