What's the difference between baking soda and baking powder?


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What's the difference between baking soda and baking powder?

I have always wanted to ask this questions. I know that different recipes call for one or the other, but I never knew why. I only guessed that it may have something to do with how a pastry is supposed to rise or something.
 
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Baking soda is sodium bicarbonate that needs a citric in the recipe to rise, while baking powder is also sodium bicarbonate but it already includes a citric acid carrier, so the recipe doesn't need any citric at all, it still can contain it though.
 
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Okay. Thanks for your answer. I had no idea that it had anything to do with citric acid. No, I understand why most baking recipes ask for baking powder.
 
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Mydigitalpoint is correct and it understand how it can be confusing. You need to make sure you know the difference as it can greatly impact your baked goods.
 
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I like to use baking soda for everything! It actually has so many uses, I know a recipe that is good for whitening the teeth. I also use it in the kitchen for getting greener french beans and broccoli :) I just let the water boil, add a couple spoons to it and then add the broccoli for one minute or less! You get the most green broccoli ever this way! Totally yummy!
 
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Baking soda and baking powder are two different things. You can'n use baking soda for baking powder or the other way around. Baking soda needs an acidic ingredient in order to activate it. While a baking powder actually is a baking soda itself that has already an acidic ingredient in it. That is why you cannot use it in place of one another because your baking recipes will not work out as the way you want it to be.
 
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From a scientific perspective, baking soda neutralizes acids in food, so it is a good thing to have, but will not raise bread without a yeast product. Baking powder on the other hand, will raise a quick bread without the need for yeast. The do different things in the baking process.
 

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