Scratch Marble Cake From Yellow Cake

Decorating By MichelleM77 Updated 5 Dec 2008 , 8:00pm by MichelleM77

MichelleM77 Posted 3 Dec 2008 , 7:28pm
post #1 of 9

I did a search and found lots of info, but I have a specific, kinda scientific, question regarding doing this that I could not find.

All of the chocolate cakes I've found have baking powder AND baking soda in them, while yellow cakes just have baking powder. When I looked up making marble, lots of people said to just either add cocoa powder or melted chocolate chips to some yellow batter and swirl it in. What about the baking soda? It must have something to do with the chocolate, no?

Can anyone explain the reasoning for baking soda in chocolate cakes? I'm really nervous about giving this a try (probably adding melted chocolate chips to yellow batter). Thanks!

8 replies
Cake_Princess Posted 3 Dec 2008 , 8:20pm
post #2 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by MichelleM77

I did a search and found lots of info, but I have a specific, kinda scientific, question regarding doing this that I could not find.

All of the chocolate cakes I've found have baking powder AND baking soda in them, while yellow cakes just have baking powder. When I looked up making marble, lots of people said to just either add cocoa powder or melted chocolate chips to some yellow batter and swirl it in. What about the baking soda? It must have something to do with the chocolate, no?

Can anyone explain the reasoning for baking soda in chocolate cakes? I'm really nervous about giving this a try (probably adding melted chocolate chips to yellow batter). Thanks!




Baking soda is used to neutralize an acidic ingredient. So you will usually find it being used in chocolate cake where a dutch cocoa has not been used.

leah_s Posted 3 Dec 2008 , 8:33pm
post #3 of 9

Baking soda reacts with the oaxalic acid in the chocolate to increase leavening.

Cake_Princess Posted 3 Dec 2008 , 9:00pm
post #4 of 9

I was just searching some sites online. Here is some more information for you.

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/387924


Just to expand on my earlier response, when recipes are formulated it's usually done in such a way that there isn't an excess of acid in the baked cake or bread. (Basic equilibrium reactions). So baking soda is used when a leavening agent such as baking powder or another acidic ingredient is used. Having said that if you use a cocoa powder that's dutched processed you will find you do not need to use the baking soda. The reason being is the cocoa has already been processed in such a way to raise the pH making it less acidic.

I hope this answers your question.

MichelleM77 Posted 4 Dec 2008 , 12:48am
post #5 of 9

Yes, you guys did help, but I'm still not sure what to do because I was either going to use chocolate chips or cocoa powder that is not dutch processed, so I would still need to use baking soda according to the reasons above, but I haven't read that people are doing that when they add chocolate of this kind to their yellow cake batter. Argh. LOL! I'm going to have to just do it and hope for the best. icon_smile.gif

ladyonzlake Posted 4 Dec 2008 , 1:01am
post #6 of 9

I made a marble cake with my scratch vanilla cake recipe. I took out about 1/3 of the batter and mixed in melted semi sweet chocolate and it turned out great.

Cake_Princess Posted 4 Dec 2008 , 9:43am
post #7 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by MichelleM77

Yes, you guys did help, but I'm still not sure what to do because I was either going to use chocolate chips or cocoa powder that is not dutch processed, so I would still need to use baking soda according to the reasons above, but I haven't read that people are doing that when they add chocolate of this kind to their yellow cake batter. Argh. LOL! I'm going to have to just do it and hope for the best. icon_smile.gif




If you are using a scratch recipe and you alter the type of cocoa being used then it will vary the texture of the cake. I don't know What recipe you are using but it might not make that big od a deal in the grand scheme of things.

Bethkay Posted 4 Dec 2008 , 12:58pm
post #8 of 9

I agree with Cake_Princess. I have had success just stirring in cocoa powder to a small amount of my yellow and white batters and then swirling it in to accomplish the marbled look. It is such a small percentage of your batter, that in the scheme of things, I don't think you need to get too hung up on the baking powder/baking soda issue. icon_smile.gif

MichelleM77 Posted 5 Dec 2008 , 8:00pm
post #9 of 9

Well even though at midnight when I was finishing baking I thought it was a total disaster (it appeared that the chocolate didn't rise as much as the yellow and that all of the chocolate got sucked into the middle of the pan somehow), but when I leveled off the cakes the next morning they were perfect! I even had enough batter to make some cupcakes. Would have had more, but I overfilled my pans to begin with.

You are right, it's probably such a small amount of batter that it doesn't matter. Thanks everyone! Oh, and I think I have a favorite cake flavor, marble! icon_smile.gif

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