Baking soda


Written By: Ehsan Jahandarpour

Sodium bicarbonateThe prefix “bi” in “bicarbonate” comes from an outdated naming system and is based on the observation that there is two times as much carbonate (CO3) in sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3) and other bicarbonates as in sodium carbonate (Na2CO3) and other carbonates. (IUPAC name: sodium hydrogen carbonate) is the chemical compound with the formula NaHCO3. Sodium bicarbonate is a white solid that is crystalline but often appears as a fine powder. It has a slightly salty, alkaline taste resembling that of washing soda (sodium carbonate). The natural mineral form is nahcolite. It is a component of the mineral natron and is found dissolved in many mineral springs. It is among the food additives encoded by European Union, identified by the initials E 500. Since it has long been known and is widely used, the salt has many related names such as baking soda, bread soda, cooking soda, and bicarbonate of soda. The word saleratus, from Latin sal æratus meaning aerated salt, was widely used in the 19th century for both sodium bicarbonate and potassium bicarbonate. The term has now fallen out of common usage.