Best Substitutes for Baking Soda [Cookies, Banana Bread, etc.]

Last Updated on November 10, 2022 by Claire

Substitutes for baking soda? Baking soda is a vital aspect of our daily lives, with uses beyond baking. We know about several other uses of baking soda, including teeth whitening, natural deodorant, and cleaning, to mention a few.

Above the different uses of baking soda beyond the kitchen, it is a must-have for every baking process. It is always the first ingredient on our minds whenever we think of baking our favorite snacks, cookies, or cakes.

When baking, it is essential to know about ready substitutes for baking soda in case you ever exhaust the quantity available. Granted that baking soda is an integral part of many recipes, finding an adequate substitute that will produce similar results is a remarkable feat. Using the proper substitute for baking soda will ensure the end product of your baking process retains the desired texture and quality.

Substitutes for baking soda

Best Substitutes for Baking Soda in cakes, pancakes, cupcakes, cookies, and bread

1. Baking powder

Most people will feel that baking powder and baking soda are similar. They are pretty different, although they are often used in many recipes.

This would make it out of place to replace baking soda with baking powder. For recipes that require only baking soda, baking powder will make for an adequate replacement.

To effectively replace baking soda with baking powder, you will need a more significant amount of baking powder. Baking powder already contains acid, which differentiates it from baking soda.

This would make it an easy proposition to replace baking soda, and this is because baking soda would react with acid when added to other ingredients.

You would need 3 teaspoons of baking powder to replace 1 tablespoon of baking soda. However, you are required to leave out adding extra salt to the mix as baking powder can make the final product taste salty. Here, WebMD discusses baking soda dos and don’ts.

2. Whipped egg whites

Whipped egg whites are known to create an airy texture. This texture can be transferred to baked products to help the dough rise, which is similar to what baking soda performs. For persons who have made chocolate mousse or a meringue, they would have experienced this severally.

Whipped egg whites are an ideal alternative for making dough that requires baking soda. This alternative is excellent for recipes that combine baking soda and baking powder, as it prevents you from using baking powder as a substitute. This substitution is excellent for recipes that use eggs, as you would cut costs for buying extra eggs as the baking soda substitute. This doesn’t negate the fact that you can replace baking soda with whipped egg white in any recipe of your choice.

For recipes that require eggs, you must separate the yolks from the egg whites. The yolks should be mixed into the batter as usual. The egg whites should be whipped until it attains stiff peaks and gently folded. The whipped egg whites should go into the batter.

Folding the egg whites into the batter will help keep the airy quality of the whipped egg whites. Avoid stirring the mix, as it would flatten out the batter.

Egg whites would be needed for recipes that do not call for eggs. One egg white would be sufficient for a regular recipe; adding an extra egg would provide more fluffiness. The egg white should be separated from the yolk and whipped to stiff peaks before adding it to the batter. Egg whites add a layer of moisture to the batter, so leave out the extra liquid – water or milk.

3. Self-rising flour

Those who regularly bake should have some self-rising flour in their kitchen cabinet. Self-rising flour can be used as an adequate substitute for baking soda for all your baking needs.

For those who do not have self-rising flour, consider getting some on your next shopping trip. This substitute is best used for recipes that require flour as an ingredient. It is different from all-purpose flour as it has salt and baking soda, as part of its constituents. When working with the self-rising flour, you do not need any other leavening agent to be added to the mix.

4. Baker’s ammonia

Although the baker’s ammonia does not have an appealing aroma, it is still an excellent substitute for baking soda. It smells like ammonia, and if you can deal with the initial scent, then you are good to go. The smell will eventually disappear once you begin cooking, and it does not leave any alkaline trace in the finished product.

It is used in a similar amount required for baking soda in your recipe. Baker’s ammonia was the baking flour used before the discovery and subsequent adoption of baking soda.

5. Potassium bicarbonate and salt

Potassium bicarbonate is not a readily available substitute. It is the less salty version of baking soda and a great substitute for baking soda. A few persons use it as an antacid for those with low potassium.

Potassium bicarbonate is used in a 1-to-1 exchange ratio for baking soda in any recipe. As it contains less salt, adding between ¼ to ½ teaspoon of salt to your recipe is advisable.

6. Club soda

Club soda may not provide as much rise as baking soda does, but the effervescence given off by club soda helps to give a bit of lift to baked products. It works best for recipes containing about ½ cup of liquid (water or milk). Some of the liquid in the recipe will also need to be replaced with club soda.

You can start by replacing a ¼ cup of liquid with a ¼ cup of club soda. Club soda should be the last ingredient in the recipe to replace baking soda, as the effervescence doesn’t last. You would also have to get the mix into the oven faster to maximize the effervescence.

7. Leave out using flour or substitutes

This method uses less batter in the pan to cover the surface area to make pancakes. When making cookies, try to flatten out the dough to avoid it having a larger size. Also, adjust your baking time, as it will require less time. This is the last resort when the other options are not available.

Whatever you do, don’t do this.

It would be best if you never used yeast instead of baking soda. Although they are both leaving agents, they have different operating mechanisms and conditions. Yeast is a living organism and would impart the flavors of the baked product. So while yeast can cause your bread to rise, it is not advisable for use as a substitute in its entirety.

Best substitute for baking soda when cleaning

Baking soda is vital also for cleaning our homes and environment. It is a natural absorbent with a gentle abrasiveness, making it an exquisite cleaning agent. It also helps to prevent scratching and fading on surfaces sensitive to fade and scratch.

But when not available, other excellent substitutes can perform similar tasks to baking soda. We present them below.

1. Club soda

Club soda is an ideal replacement for replacing baking soda when cleaning out oil and grease. The effervescence of club soda acts to help dissolve thoughts stains from oil and grease. Pour club soda on oil or grease and wipe off almost immediately to get sparkling results.

2. Hydrogen Peroxide

Used as a baking soda replacement when cleaning rugs and carpets. Just pour the hydrogen peroxide on the stain, leave for some minutes, and wipe off the stains with a soft cloth.

3. Vinegar

This is an excellent replacement for baking soda when cleaning, washing clothes, and removing smells around the house.

4. Rubbing alcohol

Alcohol is also a good substitute for baking soda. Apart from being able to help remove stains, alcohol is a good disinfectant.


While baking soda is a kitchen must-have in most homes, the list of substitutes provided in this article shows plenty of alternatives should you ever run out of baking soda.

You can make a selection based on the type of meal you intend to create. Don’t also forget that yeast is never an alternative to baking soda. They have different functions when added to your food recipe, even though they are both leavening agents.