Is Your Baking Soda and Powder Still Fresh

posted by Andrea | 07/7/2012

I use baking soda on a daily basis — for everything from cooking and baking to cleaning and eliminating orders in the fridge. I even use baking soda to wash my hair!

I also go through several containers of baking powder each year.

I stock up when they go on sale and always have several containers of each in our pantry. However, sometimes the containers get shoved to the back of the pantry and since I don’t always remember to write the date on the containers… I don’t always know if our baking soda and baking powder are as fresh as they should be.

I learned the hard way {after a pancake failure} that it really IS important to only use fresh baking soda / powder.

If you’re wondering how to know if your baking soda and baking powder are still fresh, here is a really simple test you can do… right now.

Baking Soda:

Pour a few Tablespoons of white vinegar in a small bowl.

Add a teaspoon of baking soda.

If it fizzes, the baking soda is still fresh. If it doesn’t fizz, your baking soda is past it’s prime.

Baking Powder:

Perform the same test, only use water instead of vinegar.

Add a teaspoon of baking poweder to the water

If it fizzes, the baking powder is still fresh. If not, it might be time to open a new container.

Seriously, I never knew it was THAT easy!

Do you have any other kitchen quick-tips?

Filed under: FoodTips and Tools

Leave a comment


  1. Ruth


    I never knew! I will check mine now 🙂


  2. Angela Ferguson


    Great tips! Thanks Andrea.


  3. Kjrsten


    To test soda for freshness you can also use lemon juice over ½ teaspoon baking soda. For baking powder freshness: Mix 1 teaspoon baking powder with 1/3 cup HOT water. Both should be stored in a cool dry place in your kitchen in an air-tight container for up to 18 months. Shame on me. I keep mine in the box. Well, another excuse to head out to the store. 🙂


  4. Cathleen


    I didn’t know this! I go through a lot of baking soda – so it is usually fresh – but my baking powder hangs around forever, so I must try this!

    how about eggs?
    I date all my spices (I live in the tropics and sometimes they go moldy) but is there a rule of thumb about their shelf life and freshness?


    Ramona Reply:


    to check the freshness of eggs:

    fill a glass with water, gently put in the egg, if it sinks its good, if it floats its bad.


  5. JoAnn C.


    Just checked out both of mine before I start baking on Monday. Thanks for the valuable info.


  6. Jen


    I didn’t know baking soda stopped fizzing in vinegar when it lost its freshness! Both my powder and soda are fresh as of today. Thanks for the tip!


  7. KimH


    Haha.. I never knew that either.. and Im old! 🙂 Thanks for a great tip!