How would you distinguish between baking powder and washing soda by heaing?

how would you distinguish between baking powder and washing soda by heaing?

Kunal Mishra

Baking powder:-

  • It is a mixture of edible acid-like tartaric acid Sodium hydrogen carbonate.
  • It is commonly used in cake-making, as it is a raising agent.
  • It is made up of an alkali, Bicarbonate of soda, acid, cream of tartar, and a filler like cornflour or rice flour, that absorbs moisture.
  • Carbon dioxide is produced and bubbles are formed that cause the mixture to expand, as the powder is activated when liquid is added.
  • It has a chemical formula of NaHCO3

Washing soda:-

  • Washing soda is a whitish and odourless powder in nature.
  • Its chemical formula is Sodium bicarbonateNa2CO3
  • It absorbs moisture in the air as it is hygroscopic.
  • It creates a strongly alkaline water solution, as it is extremely soluble in water.

Distinguish between Baking powder and Washing soda:-

  • When baking soda is heated, Sodium bicarbonate, carbon dioxide, and water vapor is formed.
  • The Carbon dioxide, extinguishes a blazing matchstick quickly.
  • The complete reaction is:


  • When Washing soda is heated, it does not produce Carbon dioxide, but loses water of crystallization.
  • the complete reaction is:


Therefore, when baking powder NaHCO3 and washing powder Na2CO3 are both heated, baking powder produces Carbon dioxide but washing soda does not.