How to Make Sugar Cookies Without Baking Soda (with Pictures)

5 Tips to Keep The Oven Clean

A clean oven is a necessity for your kitchen and these tips will help you keep it clean for longer.

  1. Try to keep the food covered at all times to prevent spills.
  2. Keep your oven clean by always using a baking sheet or cookie tray to avoid food from falling onto the grates or the bottom of the oven.
  3. Remove the rack you are not using from the oven before cooking.
  4. Cover the racks you are using with foil paper.
  5. Wipe down any food that spills immediately after it happens for a quick and easy cleanup.

Ingredients To Make Pancakes Without Baking Powder

1 cup all purpose flour

2 tablespoons sugar

¼ teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

½ cup whole milk

2 tablespoons oil I used olive oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

butter or oil as needed to grease the pan and cook the pancakes


Things You’ll Need

For Shaping and Baking the Cookies

  • Rolling pin
  • Baking sheet
  • Parchment paper or baking mat
  • Cookie cutters
  • Wire cooling rack
  • Spatula

Substitute for baking powder in pancakes

As I mentioned in the beginning, in this easy recipe for pancakes, we do not use any substitute for baking powder to make the pancakes.

However, there are other ways to substitute baking powder in pancakes.

One easy method (as I mentioned early), is to use self rising flour instead of regular flour which already contains baking powder, so you will not have to use extra baking powder.

To substitute baking powder in pancakes, it is helpful to understand what constitutes baking powder.

Baking powder is made of a mixture of baking soda and cream of tartar where cream of tartar is acidic in nature (along with a little cornstarch for stability).

So if you have baking soda at home, you can substitute baking powder in pancakes by combining baking soda with something mildly acidic in nature like lemon juice, vinegar, apple cider vinegar etc.

Keep in mind that the ratio of the ingredients is really important and also they can change the flavor of the pancakes.

In short, if you want to make 1 teaspoon of baking powder, you need to evenly mix ¼ teaspoon of baking soda and ½ teaspoon of cream of tartar and also ¼ teaspoon of cornstarch to the mixture for stability.

There are other ingredients that you could use instead of cream of tartar if you have baking soda at home.

That includes lemon juice, vinegar, apple cider vinegar, buttermilk or yogurt,  or any food that is mildly acidic in nature like even sour cream or molasses (this is if you have baking soda but do not have cream of tartar).

However, we do not use any of these in this recipe for pancakes.

We simply use the method of whipped egg whites to make the pancakes, which doesn’t require baking soda or baking powder!

Making Sugar Cookies Without Baking Soda or Powder

Below is a recipe to make 12 sugar cookies without baking soda or powder.

The preparation should take no more than 15 minutes while the baking process will take around 12 minutes, leaving you with a 27-minute process in total. 

Baking Powder as a Baking Soda Substitute

When looking for baking soda replacements, you may find many sources referring to baking powder as one of the best substitutes for baking soda. However, this can be misleading, since many sources do not delve into the composition of baking powder. It is necessary to understand what baking powder is and how it differs from baking soda. While baking soda is pure sodium bicarbonate, baking powder is a combination of baking soda plus another acid that is also in the presence of an inactive ingredient that keeps the mixture from reacting (an inert stabilizer). Essentially, baking powder is baking soda, cream of tartar (a dry acid, one of many dry ingredients) and sometimes cornstarch. If you are truly looking to avoid using baking soda, baking powder is not a viable substitute since at its most base level, it is comprised of baking soda. With that being said, if you are not averse to a substance that contains baking soda and additional chemical agents, baking powder can be used as a substitute for baking soda in cookies.

When using baking powder as a baking soda substitute, keep in mind that baking soda is much stronger than baking powder. Baking soda is generally three to four times stronger than baking powder. If you are using baking powder as a baking soda substitute, for every one teaspoon of baking soda a recipe calls for, substitute three teaspoons of baking powder. In addition, baking powder produces a slightly different texture in cookies than baking soda does. While baking soda will create a coarse, chewy cookie texture, baking powder will produce a light, fine cookie texture.

To achieve the best cookie results, use a double-acting baking powder as a substitute. A double-acting baking powder will achieve a better rise in the cookies that the single-acting variety, which may not have enough power to raise the cookies properly. If using baking powder as a substitute for baking soda, it is also recommended to replace the acidic liquid in the cookie recipe with a non-acidic liquid. The reasoning behind this recommendation has to do with the leavening process of double-acting baking powder. When the double-acting baking powder is exposed to liquids, it experiences its first leavening reaction. The acid that is present in liquids like buttermilk can halt that leavening reaction and result in cookies that have not risen adequately.

When replacing acidic liquids in a cookie recipe with non-acidic liquid, use a one to one ratio. For trickier acids, such as citrus juice, you can still replace it with water or milk, but be sure to include citrus zest in the recipe as well to achieve the flavor profile that the cookie recipe calls for.

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Why Do Some Recipes Use Both Baking Soda and Baking Powder?

Recipes that call for both baking soda and baking powder usually have to do with the fact that the recipe contains acid that needs to be neutralized by the baking soda, but possibly not enough to do the amount of leavening desired. The baking powder picks up the slack. Additionally, since baking powder is double acting, it gives even more rise to the baked good.

Is there a Substitute for Baking Soda?

If you are in the kitchen cooking and find that you don’t have the baking soda that is needed, you can always use baking powder as a substitute. Baking powder contains a small amount of baking soda, so you have to triple the amount called for in the recipe.


Recipes Without Baking Powder or Baking Soda

Below are more of my favorites recipes that can be made without baking soda or baking powder!

Easy Waffle Recipe (see recipe notes for making wi

Easy Waffle Recipe (see recipe notes for making without baking powder)

Basic Shortbread Cookies

Chocolate Chip Cookies without Baking Soda or Baking Powder

Fluffy Meringue Pancakes

Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Baking Soda (Bicarbonate)

What is Baking Soda?

Baking soda is also known as sodium bicarbonate or bicarbonate of soda. Its crystallized form is ground to a fine powder for commercial sale. People commonly use it in baking as a leavening agent or as a natural cleaning compound.

How Does Baking Soda Work?

An alkaline compound, baking soda will produce carbon dioxide gas when combined with an acid. When used in cooking, the small bubbles that are generated by the carbon dioxide become trapped in the batter, causing the dough to inflate and rise. The most common acids that are combined with baking soda to produce this reaction are lemon juice, vinegar, yogurt, buttermilk, and cream of tartar.

Baking Soda: How does it work? tb1234

You can also produce carbon dioxide gas in baking soda by exposing it to heat. The chemical reaction doesn’t need an acid to take place; you need to expose the baking soda to temperatures above 176 degrees Fahrenheit or 80 degrees Celsius.

What is the Difference Between Baking Soda vs. Baking Powder?


The difference between baking soda vs. baking powder has to do with acidity. Baking soda is strictly an alkaline compound that needs to be combined with an acid to create the carbon dioxide gas.

Baking powder is a bicarbonate that contains an acid already. The acid compound comes in the form of salt and needs a liquid added for the chemical reaction to occur.

When used as baking powder, baking soda helps the dough rise during the cooking process, by releasing carbon dioxide gas when combined with an acid. (..)

Can I Use Baking Soda in the Garden or for Plants and Vegetables?

Baking soda works is a natural plant booster and stimulates blooming. Baking soda also works well to test garden soil and to reduce acid levels. That’s why baking soda makes for much sweeter tomatoes.

Besides, it prevents any fungal diseases on plants and if sprinkled around, is a natural snail repellent and slug killer. Diluted in water and mixed with olive oil, baking soda also makes for a great spray to kill spider mites and aphids, as well as other bugs that may want to eat your plants.

There are so many amazing uses for baking soda in the garden. Make sure you sprinkle it around your plants and vegetables to help them grow and produce better fruits, veggies, and flowers.

Cassie Marshall

Cassie brings decades of experience to the Kitchen

Cassie brings decades of experience to the Kitchen Community. She is a noted chef and avid gardener. Her new book “Healthy Eating Through the Garden” will be released shortly. When not writing or speaking about food and gardens Cassie can be found puttering around farmer’s markets and greenhouses looking for the next great idea.


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