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In the middle of a recipe and just realized that you are all out of baking powder? No worries, that’s where this easy substitution for homemade Baking Powder comes in!
Homemade Baking Powder Substitute
As you might already know, I don’t live near a town so running to the nearest store to pick up a missing ingredient at all hours of the day isn’t something that I’m able to do. Substitutions are important to learn if you want to keep a frugal pantry. Not only will it save you a trip to the store (gas & time), it will save you money on the item and on whatever other items you might happen to pick up while you are there!
I recently ran out of Baking Powder while in the middle of my Pantry Challenge month and had to make my own homemade baking powder all month long. I’m happy to report that this recipe works very well in a variety of baked goods and I always had luck with using it in whatever I was making, from pancakes to quick breads.
What Two Ingredients Make Up Baking Powder?
All you need to make your own baking powder is baking soda and cream of tartar. See below for alternative ideas.
Why Doesn’t This Recipe Use Cornstarch?
Recipes that use corn starch, arrowroot powder, flour, or other additives would be known as “single-acting baking powder” and are not typically as effective in your baked goods. This recipe gets straight to the point and is a substitution for double acting baking powder which is what you need in most recipes.
Is It Ok to Bake Without Baking Powder?
Baking without baking powder will leave your baked goods flat and dense. Baking Powder is a necessary agent to provide the light fluffiness you’d expect from a muffin, biscuit, or other baked goods.
Why Make Your Own Baking Powder?
Running out of baking powder is just one of the reasons why you might want to make your own!
If you are looking for a paleo baking powder or just a leavening agent without any added starch (most commercial baking powders contain cornstarch), this would be a great substitute recipe for you. This recipe is also aluminum-free.
If you are on a special diet like gluten-free, grain free, or GMO-free, this recipe also might be a good option because you can control everything in your product.
What Can Use Use Instead of Baking Powder?
This recipe is a good substitute for baking powder but if you don’t have the cream of tartar or don’t want to mix up a larger batch of homemade baking powder, you can also substitute baking soda + acid in your recipe.
Baking soda doesn’t work well on its own unless you have some kind of acidic ingredient with it (hence the cream of tartar in this recipe). You could use a splash of lemon juice, vinegar, yogurt, buttermilk, or another liquid acid product to your batter to help activate the soda.
Grab the recipe below and print it for your Recipe Binder to have it on hand when you need it!
Homemade Baking Powder Recipe
How to make your own baking powder substitute.
- 2 tablespoon Baking Soda
- 1/4 cup Cream of Tartar
Combine ingredients together in a small bowl and mix until well combined.
How to Use Homemade Baking Powder
Store in a jelly size mason jar until ready to use. You can use this as a 1:1 ratio substitute in any recipe that calls for baking powder. For example: if a recipe calls for 1 teaspoon of baking powder you can use 1 teaspoon of this blend.
I know that Cream of Tartar isn’t something you might always have on hand, but it’s a good idea to have at least a small amount of it just in case something like this comes up! You can also use it for making Homemade Play dough for your kids! I buy mine in bulk from Azure Standard because I use it fairly often for projects like this.
How Long Does Homemade Baking Powder Last?
Homemade Baking Powder will last for about a month before beginning to lose its effectiveness. It will still work fine after this time, however, you might not see as high of a lift on your baked goods. This is why it’s important to only make what you can use up in a reasonable amount of time.
Baking powder with added starch may last a little longer, but it’s still best to use it fairly soon after you make it. Storing the baking powder in an airtight container like a jar until you are ready to use will help to make it last longer. Any moisture will greatly reduce the shelf life and effectiveness.
How to Test Baking Powder
To make sure your baking powder is still active (homemade or store-bought), you can preform a simple test. Mix a small amount of baking powder with a small amount of hot water. If the mixture begins to fizz and bubble immediately, your baking powder is still active. If not, it’s time to toss it.
More Homemade Substitutions
You can find a full list of easy recipes substitutions on my Frugal Substitutions post. These types of recipes are always good to have on hand in your kitchen because you never know when you will be in the middle of a recipe and run out of something! Each substitution can save you a trip to the grocery store.
If you are looking for more recipes similar to this, you can find them on my Make Your Own page.
Recipes That Use Baking Powder
- Baking Powder Biscuit Recipe
- Raspberry Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Homemade Pancake Mix
- Coffee Cake Recipe from Scratch
- Old Fashioned Sour Cream Cookies
- Sweet Potato Biscuit Recipe
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Merissa has been blogging about and living the simple life since 2009 and has internationally published 2 books on the topic. You can read about Merissa’s journey from penniless to the 100-acre farm and ministry on the About Page. You can send her a message any time from the Contact Page.
This Baking Powder Substitute recipe was originally posted on Little House Living in February 2018. It has been updated as of February 2023.