Have you ever been in the middle of a baking project and realized you’re missing cream of tartar?
It can be an annoying setback, but don’t worry – there are plenty of substitutes that can work just as well.
Cream of tartar is a common ingredient used in baking to add stability, texture, and flavor to recipes.
But if it’s not available or if you’re looking for healthier alternatives, there are several options available.
In this article, I’ll share eight great substitutes for cream of tartar that will help you get your baking projects back on track.
From lemon juice to vinegar and even yogurt, these ingredients have the ability to make your baked goods turn out perfectly every time!
What is Cream Of Tartar?
Cream of Tartar, or potassium bitartrate, is a white powdery substance that has many culinary and baking applications.
It is most commonly used as a stabilizing ingredient in meringues and can also be used to add tanginess to baked goods such as cookies, cakes, pies and pastries.
Cream of Tartar is made from the tartaric acid that naturally forms on the walls of wine barrels during fermentation.
The acid crystallizes over time into cream-colored deposits which are then scraped off and collected for use in cooking.
In addition to its uses in baking, Cream of Tartar can also be used as an acidic ingredient when making sauces and dressings like vinaigrettes.
And it helps prevent sugar syrups from crystallizing when making candies like marshmallows or fudge.
When added to dairy products such as whipped cream or ice cream bases it adds stability by helping them retain their shape even after freezing; this same property makes Cream Of Tartar ideal for stabilizing egg whites when making meringue desserts like pavlova or macaron shells.
The 8 Best Substitutes For Cream Of Tartar
Cream of tartar is a key ingredient in many recipes, but if you don’t have any on hand, there are several great substitutes.
Here we look at eight options that will provide the same taste and texture:
1 – Lemon juice
Lemon juice is a great substitute for cream of tartar, as it has a similar acidic flavor.
It can be used in baking recipes to help stabilize egg whites and give cakes and meringues extra lift.
Lemon juice also works well in place of cream of tartar when making homemade play dough or bath bombs.
When using lemon juice as an alternative to cream of tartar, use one teaspoon per half teaspoon of cream of tartar called for in the recipe.
The acidity from the lemon will react with other ingredients in the same way that the acidity from the cream of tartar would, so you won’t have to worry about altering your recipe too much.
2 – Baking soda
Baking soda is a versatile ingredient that can be used as an alternative to cream of tartar.
It’s a leavening agent that helps cakes and other baked goods rise, while also providing structure and stability.
When combined with acidic ingredients like lemon juice or vinegar, baking soda will react and create carbon dioxide bubbles which help make doughs and batters light and fluffy.
It can also be used in place of cream of tartar when making meringues or stabilizing egg whites for desserts such as angel food cake.
Though it won’t provide the same flavor as cream of tartar, baking soda is still an effective substitute in many recipes.
3 – Yogurt
Yogurt is a great replacement for cream of tartar in baking recipes.
It contains lactic acid, which acts as a leavening agent and helps your baked goods rise.
Yogurt also adds moisture to the batter, making it lighter and fluffier.
Plus, it has a slightly tangy flavor that complements sweet treats like cakes and cookies.
When using yogurt as a replacement for, you’ll need to use twice the amount called for in the recipe.
For example, if your recipe calls for one teaspoon of cream of tartar, use two teaspoons of yogurt instead.
This will ensure that your baked goods have the same texture and flavor as they would with cream of tartar.
4 – Buttermilk
Buttermilk is a cultured dairy product that adds tanginess to recipes.
It has a thick, creamy texture and slightly sour taste due to the presence of lactic acid bacteria.
The acidity in buttermilk helps to activate baking soda, making it an ideal replacement for cream of tartar when used in baking.
For every teaspoon of cream of tartar called for in a recipe, you can use one cup of buttermilk instead.
Buttermilk also works well as a marinade or tenderizer for meats and vegetables – just be sure to rinse off any excess before cooking!
It’s low-fat content makes it great for adding moisture and flavor without all the fat associated with heavy creams or cheeses.
5 – Milk and cornstarch
If you’re out of cream of tartar, don’t worry – there’s an easy substitute.
Milk and cornstarch can be used instead.
To make the substitution, mix 1 tablespoon of cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of milk until it forms a paste-like consistency.
This mixture can then be used in place of the cream of tartar called for in your recipe.
The combination is great for stabilizing egg whites when making meringue or angel food cake, and it also helps to prevent sugar from crystallizing when making candy or frosting.
Milk and cornstarch are an easy and affordable alternative to cream of tartar that will help you get the same results without having to run out to the store!
6 – White vinegar
White vinegar, also known as distilled vinegar, is a common pantry staple that can be used for a variety of purposes.
It has a sharp and acidic taste that makes it great for pickling vegetables or creating vinaigrettes.
When it comes to baking, white vinegar can be used as an effective substitute for cream of tartar.
The acidity in the vinegar will help stabilize egg whites when making meringues and other desserts.
It’s important to note that you should use one teaspoon of white vinegar instead of two teaspoons of cream of tartar when substituting in recipes.
White vinegar is also useful for cleaning surfaces around the house and removing stubborn stains from fabrics.
7 – Baking powder
Baking powder is a leavening agent that helps baked goods rise.
It is composed of baking soda, an acid (such as cream of tartar), and a moisture absorber (such as cornstarch).
When combined with liquid, the baking powder releases carbon dioxide bubbles which cause the dough to expand.
This process creates a light and airy texture in cakes, muffins, pancakes, and other baked goods.
Baking powder can be used as a substitute for cream of tartar when making meringues or stabilizing egg whites.
The ratio should be two parts baking powder to one part cream of tartar.
It can also be used in place of yeast when making quick breads or biscuits – just add 2 teaspoons per cup of flour for every teaspoon of yeast called for in the recipe.
For best results, use fresh baking powder since it will provide more lift than older batches that have lost some potency over time.
8 – Corn syrup
Corn syrup is a thick, sweet liquid made from cornstarch.
It has a mild flavor and is often used to give foods a glossy sheen or to add sweetness without granulated sugar.
Corn syrup can be used as an alternative to cream of tartar when making meringue or other baked goods that require acidity for leavening.
When substituting, use the same amount of corn syrup as you would cream of tartar and mix it with baking soda before adding it to the recipe.
The combination will create carbon dioxide bubbles that help your dough rise and give it structure.
Corn syrup also adds moisture, which helps keep baked goods soft and tender.
If you’re in a pinch and don’t have cream of tartar available, don’t worry – there are plenty of great substitutes that can help you get your baking projects back on track.
From lemon juice and white vinegar to yogurt and baking powder, these ingredients can provide similar results and flavors.
Other options include buttermilk, milk and cornstarch, and corn syrup.
For best results, use the same amount of substitute as you would cream of tartar and adjust the other ingredients accordingly.
With these substitutes in your arsenal, you’ll never have to worry about being in the middle of a baking project and not having cream of tartar on hand!
The 8 Best Substitutes For Cream Of Tartar
- Lemon juice
- Baking soda
- Milk and cornstarch
- White vinegar
- Baking powder
- Corn syrup
- Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
- Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.