Why Are Your Cake Recipes Failing?

Your cake is not rising? Maybe your baking powder is the problem!

Baking powder has a major effect on your cake’s structure and could lead to a recipe failure if it is old. Even if it hasn’t expired yet, a 3 months old baking powder may be ruined and can affect your recipe negatively.

Therefore, today I’m going to give you tips and tricks on how to know if your baking powder is effective with your recipe, and whether you can replace it with baking soda or not.

To watch my video, click on this Link.

Mirna Elsabbagh, Adult & Child Nutritionist - Breastfeeding and Child Nutrition


To make sure your cake will rise, we should perform a couple of tests.


  • Get 3 empty cups
  • Add 1 tablespoon of water in each of the first 2 of the cups
  • Place 1 tablespoon of vinegar in the third cup


To measure the effectiveness of baking powder

  • Place 1 teaspoon of baking powder in the first cup, it should make bubbles after some time (bubble effect). This indicates that the baking powder is good to use.


To measure the effectiveness of baking soda

  • Place a teaspoon of baking soda in the second cup, it will have no bubble effect. This shows that baking soda can’t be replaced with baking powder.
  • Place a teaspoon of baking soda in the third cup containing vinegar, it will lead to the bubble effect. Why? Because vinegar is acid and baking soda needs acid to work. This is why we can not add baking soda to a recipe that contains acids otherwise it will not rise


Bottom line is, Baking powder= Baking soda + Acid (Vinegar, milk, yogurt, orange juice…) you need acid for it to work


You might be wondering, what should I do if I have baking powder and the recipe asked for baking soda? Well, in this case you can use baking powder but you might have to triple the amount and it may or may not affect flavor. I would personally go for it.


Mirna Elsabbagh, Adult & Child Nutritionist - Breastfeeding and Child Nutrition

I hope this was helpful!

Mirna Sabbagh, an adult and child dietitian, nutritionist, and lactation consultant. She also has several digital courses: Pregnancy Nutrition Course, breastfeeding course,  starting solids 6-12 months courseand also child nutrition for all children including picky eaters, that you can sign up for from the comfort of your home.

The courses are pre-recorded. As soon as you make the course purchase, you will receive a link to watch the course from your phone or laptop.

You can also e-mail Mirna for questions on info@mirnaelsabbagh.com