Tips

why are my baked goods turning blue?

So you’ve made some fruit scones or peach cupcakes and you notice that the end product is streaked blue and green. Sound familiar? In almost every case, it’s not you, it’s your baking powder. Baking powder with aluminum in it reacts to acidic ingredients, causing this discoloration and what many people find to be a “tinny” or metallic taste. Fortunately, this is as easy to rectify as ditching your baking powder for an aluminum-free brand, such as Rumford (the brand also makes Clabber Girl baking powder, which, oddly, does contain aluminum) or Bob’s Red Mill.

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12 comments on why are my baked goods turning blue?

  1. Thank you! The blue baked-goods problem has been annoying me for a while. For some reason it tends to happen when I include sunflower seeds in muffins (but not in yeast breads, which makes sense now). I wouldn’t expect the seeds to be acidic, but maybe they are. I love the tips section by the way!

  2. I switched to Aluminum-free recently. It seems to work a lot differently than my old baking powder – I tend to need less of it – like half (mainly noticed this when my go-to pancake recipe came out very different). I wonder if the Al-free product is just fresher or does it actually take less than the Al brands?

  3. Interesting – i have baked A LOT for A LONG time and have never run into a blue streak . . . . .or anything like it and have always used Clabber Girl or Calumet . . . . .the only time I come up with weird colors is once in a while a blue berry blows up in a muffin and collides with the super yellow batter from yolks from my chickens and turns the cake “green” . . . . . . :)

  4. Just found ARGO aluminum free baking Powder in Fairway. Seems to come from the cornstarch people and is in a nifty squarish container..nice. Seemed to do just fine in Shortcake Biscuits.

  5. I’ve had 2 baked good recipes turn blue-green on me now…yet I’m using Rumford AL-free baking powder. Any ideas on what else could be causing the color change? Both recipes had homemade sunbutter in them, so I think it’s something reacting with the sunbutter. One recipe ended up with the bitter/metalic taste and had to be tossed; the 2nd recipe just looked funny but was tasty. I did use pink Himalayan salt in both. Would that cause a strange chemical reaction vs. regular salt? Very puzzled!

  6. Last night I baked some carrot cake loaves with sunflower seeds in them. The seeds appeared normal last night, but when I cut a slice for breakfast this morning the seeds had turned bright blue. I use aluminum-free baking powder, so I know that’s not the culprit. After a bit of research I’ve learned that if the ph of the batter is too alkaline, nuts and seeds and some other plant foods will turn blue or green. The Sunbutter company recommends cutting the amount of baking soda and powder in your recipe in half to reduce discoloration.

  7. Hello. Thanks for this great thread! I just made a great paleo bread that is mostly a variety of nuts along with a binder. I have been making the bread for a few weeks but this week made a few changes to it.

    Two changes, among others, was that I ground the nuts to a flour, and also added baking SODA (not powder). Prior to this loaf, there was no discoloration but this time…lots of green/blue!

    So after reading this post my questions are: is it the nuts? is it the baking SODA? It’s Trader Joe’s baking soda but doesn’t say non-aluminum. Confused. Any answers? Maybe since it’s soda instead of powder, I can assume its the nuts that are discoloring it?

  8. As Jonathan above I am having the same issue. We use baking soda and salt and vinegar equal measures should we use less of one?? Can anyone recommend anything to stop the blue tinge at the bottom of the cake?

  9. I had the exact problem and the only thing that was different was that we use trade joe baking soda and the oatmeal cookies have a weird greenish tint

  10. I just switched my baking powder from Clabber Girl to Rumford Aluminum-Free (in a gluten-free muffin recipe). It worked perfectly, but the baking powder flavor was very pronounced. Aimee mentions that she needs only have as much aluminum-free in her recipes. I’ll try that next time, might help.