Baking Soda vs Cornstarch – Can You Use Baking Soda Instead of Cornstarch?

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Baking soda and cornstarch are ingredients that you most likely have at the back of your cupboard, ready to use! Knowing the difference between both cornstarch and baking soda can help you make the right decision when baking or cooking. Familiarizing yourself with baking soda vs cornstarch comparisons can help you choose the right ingredient depending on your dish or bake.

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In this article we will explore how baking soda and cornstarch work and which is the better ingredient. Is baking soda or cornstarch more beneficial to use? 

Home baking supplies

Is Cornstarch The Same As Baking Soda?

The quick answer is no, cornstarch and baking soda are two separate ingredients that act in different ways.

Baking soda can be referred to as sodium bicarbonate. It is a type of salt that acts as a leavening agent. Baking soda has an alkaline ph and tastes very salty when added to food. Baking soda also has disinfectant properties. It can be used in other ways other than cooking and baking, such as cleaning and taking care of the skin. Baking soda can also be used in home recipes for teeth whitening and exfoliation. It can even be mixed with water to help relieve indigestion

Cornstarch is very different to baking soda. Unlike baking soda, cornstarch is not a type of salt and is made from a corn kernel. Cornstarch is mainly used as a thickening agent in food meaning. Its main use is to help get the consistency right in a recipe. It’s not really valued for its flavor.

Cornstarch Vs Baking Soda For Cleaning

Using natural ingredients can be very effective when cleaning. Sometimes they’re more effective than using harsh chemical products.

Both cornstarch and baking soda are very impressive ingredients that can work well to clean and remove marks. Although both cornstarch and baking soda can be used to clean, cornstarch is strong enough to clean multiple problem areas but gentle enough to not damage your products or home while you clean. If you are looking to clean with either baking soda or cornstarch, we would recommend that you choice cornstarch. 

Here is a full list of ways you can clean with cornstarch: 

  • Cornstarch is gentle enough to not thin down your home equipment when you are cleaning.
  • Cornstarch can remove grease stains from fabric if you soak your fabric in a water and cornstarch paste mixture. 
  • A paste made with cornstarch can be used to effectively clean jewelry. Cornstarch paste works the best on silver jewelry and pearls. 
  • Using a thicker cornstarch paste can remove crayon marks on your house wall. 
  • Cornstarch can clean stains and general marks on your clothes that are made from leather, cotton, or silk. 
  • Removing dust, oil, and sweat marks on kitchen surfaces can easily be achieved by using cornstarch. 

Accidentally Put Baking Soda Instead Of Cornstarch

Baking soda and cornstarch are similar in some ways. Baking soda has an alkaline base just like cornstarch. Therefore if you have used baking soda instead of cornstarch for cleaning there should not be too much difference In the result. 

If you have used baking soda instead of cornstarch in your baking or cooking then your baked good or savory dish may change in taste and appearance. If you have used baking soda instead of cornstarch, your dish may not rise to the level you would have wished and also have a saltier flavor. 

Can Cornstarch Be Substituted For Baking Soda?

Baking soda is not a good substitute for your cooking if you are looking to replace cornstarch. This is because cornstarch and baking soda function in different ways when added to recipes and baked goods.

When added to food, cornstarch will help to thicken your recipes. It can be used in foods such as soups, gravies, custards, and stews to thicken the consistency. Baking soda when added to your recipes acts as a leavening agent, which can help your baked good and dishes rise. Baking soda is mainly used to help rise dough in baked goods, due to a chemical reaction. 

Can I Use Cornstarch Instead Of Baking Soda

We would not recommend that you use cornstarch to replace baking soda or baking soda to replace cornstarch. Baking soda and cornstarch are not interchangeable, especially in cooking or baking recipes. They act different when mixed with other ingredients.

Baking soda will have a different chemical reaction with the other ingredients. Baking soda will also add a salty flavor to your dish. Cornstarch will help thicken your recipe and not add to much flavor to the overall result. 

If you do use baking soda instead of cornstarch you will notice that your outcome is saltier in taste and less dense in texture. 

If you do use cornstarch instead of baking soda, your baked good will most likely turn out flatter than you expected. It will have a blander taste.

If you do decide to replace baking soda with cornstarch, you may want to add extra ingredients to make up for the change. If you use cornstarch instead of baking soda in your baked goods, make sure to add half a teaspoon of salt to make sure that the taste of your baked good remains the same. You can also add one teaspoon of baking powder to help your baked good rise. Both baking powder and salt will work well with cornstarch. 

white powder on black surface

Baking Soda vs Cornstarch: Both Baking Soda and Cornstarch are Used in Their Own Unique Ways

It is very hard to compare baking soda and cornstarch seeing as they are different ingredients that act in two completely different ways.

Cornstarch can be used to help to thicken your recipes in consistency. Baking soda acts as a leavening agent which can help your baked goods and dishes rise.

We would recommend that you do not use baking soda to replace cornstarch as it will add a salty flavor to your food. We would also recommend that you do not replace baking soda with cornstarch as it will not help your dishes or baked goods rise.

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By Anna

Hey, I’m Anna; writer, editor and amateur cook extraordinaire! Food has been my life and my passion for the most of my life – it’s crazy to think I didn’t pursue a career in cooking. I’m obsessed! However, keeping cooking as an obsessive hobby has worked for me – my passion grows as the years pass by – maybe I wouldn’t say the same if it was also my day job! I hope you find cooking inspiration, entertainment and “stop and think interesting tid-bits” throughout my writing – and I’d love to hear from you if you’ve got anything you want to share. Food feeds the soul – so get eating!

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