If you are not having much success with how your baking goods are turning out lately, there may be a simple answer. It could be something as simple as old baking powder or baking soda. You have to toss them when they have reached their expiration date.
The process of finding out if your baking powder and baking soda is still good is extremely easy. Do you have access to water and vinegar? If so, then you can do it.
Here is how to test your baking powder and soda to see if it is still effective:
The only ingredients you need are water and vinegar (and, of course, your baking powder and/or baking soda.)
For baking powder – place 1 teaspoon powder in a cup and add 1/3 cup hot water.
For baking soda – place ¼ teaspoon soda in a cup and add 2 teaspoons vinegar.
Whether you are testing baking soda or baking powder, immediately after adding either the vinegar or water you should begin to see the mixture bubble. In a matter of seconds the mixture goes from bubbles … to a fizz … and then it begins to mellow out. If bubbling or fizzing occurs, you can feel confident that your baking powder or baking soda is still efficient and doing it’s job.
If the mixture does not bubble (like the bottom picture marked with an “X”), then your baking powder and/or soda will need to be replaced.
Always remember to look at the expiration date on the product. When I did the powder test and it failed – sure enough, I looked at the date on the package and it’s shelf life had passed a long time ago. If you can keep your inventory of baking ingredients fresh – you, your powder, and your soda, will be bubbling over in more ways than one!