Baking Soda and Baking Powder

Baking soda and baking powder are both leaveners that cause baked goods to rise and give them a light texture. But - and this is a big but - baking soda neutralizes acidic ingredients (buttermilk, lemon juice, molasses or cream of tartar), tenderizing baked goods; baking powder does not. Batters and doughs that use only baking soda as a leavening agent should be baked immediately to keep the texture light and ensure proper rise.