I love questions from readers. Most often the questions I receive are very specific to a particular (often very limited) diet, but I recently received a question that is applicable to everyone, so I will share my response.
Question: (wording has changed) I am attempting to adapt a traditional recipe to be gluten-free. This recipe uses both baking soda and baking powder. Do I use them both? And in what amounts?
Answer: When baking gluten-free (and especially if also egg-free) I recommend doubling the amount of baking powder that a traditional recipe calls for.
If the recipe calls for both baking soda and baking powder, use the baking soda (do not adjust the amount) and double the baking powder.
If the original recipe calls for 1 teaspoon baking soda and 1 ½ teaspoons baking power, use 1 teaspoon baking soda and 3 teaspoons baking powder in your gluten-free recipe.
Keep in mind that baking soda needs an acid to react with. This could be lemon juice, orange juice, chocolate, vinegar, etc. Many recipe developers mistakenly add baking soda to their recipes when they don’t have an acidic ingredient. If that’s the case, then feel free to leave out the baking soda – you won’t lose anything. Also keep in mind that baking soda reacts quickly, so make sure you get your project into the oven quickly once your batter is mixed!