What's in baking powder?

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Baking powder combines an acid (most commonly monocalcium phosphate, sodium aluminum sulfate, or cream of tartar) and sodium bicarbonate, an alkali also known as baking soda. Water (or other liquid) causes a chemical reaction that produces carbon dioxide, which causes the dough to rise.

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Baking powder is a leavening agent that is frequently used in baking. It is composed of sodium bicarbonate, which is known in chemistry as a base, paired with an acid, such as cream of tartar. It may also contain a filler like cornstarch.

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