Baking Powder

Published December 1, 2015.

We always assumed all baking powders were created equal. Boy, were we wrong.

Argo Double Acting Baking Powder

Dark Chocolate

Published November 1, 2013.

It’s easy to find a great snacking chocolate. But cooking is different: Choosing the right dark chocolate can make the difference between a dessert that’s flawless and one that’s a flop.

Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Premium Baking Bar

Processed Egg Whites

Published February 1, 2013.

How do these packaged products compare to fresh egg whites—both in taste and performance?

Eggology 100% Egg Whites

Ready-Made Pie Crusts

Published December 1, 2012.

Many store-bought pie crust options are grim: dense and doughy or greasy and cracker-crisp. Could we find a crust that’s closer to homemade?

Wholly Wholesome 9" Certified Organic Traditional Bake at Home Rolled Pie Dough

Supermarket Cocoa Powder

Published November 1, 2012.

These days cocoa powder fetches anywhere from $7 to nearly $24 per pound. But is price any indication of rich chocolate flavor?

Hershey’s Natural Cocoa Unsweetened

Almond Extract

Published February 1, 2012.

Just ¼ teaspoon of almond extract can perfume entire cakes with the unmistakable scent of almond. Given its potency, will any brand do?

Nielsen-Massey Pure Almond Extract


Published November 1, 2011.

Terms like "mild," "full," and "robust" are meaningless when it comes to molasses. The only surefire way to know what we were getting was to taste them.


Vanilla Beans

Published July 1, 2011.

For custard-based recipes in which vanilla is the star, we’ve found that vanilla beans impart deeper flavor than vanilla in its more familiar form, extract.

McCormick Madagascar Vanilla Beans

Creamy Peanut Butter

Published March 1, 2011.

“Natural” peanut butter used to mean an oil slick on top and a texture so stiff you could stand a stick in it. Is the new breed of butters any better? And what exactly makes them “natural”?

Skippy Creamy Peanut Butter

Whole-Wheat Flour

Published March 1, 2011.

If you thought all whole-wheat flours are created equal, you were wrong.

king arthur whole wheat flour

Milk Chocolate

Published February 1, 2011.

Has trendy dark chocolate changed our taste for good old milk chocolate?

Dove Silky Smooth Milk Chocolate

Unsweetened Chocolate

Published November 1, 2010.

With no added sugar or dairy, 100 percent pure chocolate can be a clear route to rich chocolate flavor—or bitter proof that not all bars are created equal.

Hershey's Unsweetened Baking Bar

All-Purpose Vegetable Oils

Published March 1, 2010.

Vegetable oil should stay behind the scenes, whether you’re baking, sautéing, or making salad dressing. But pick the wrong oil, and your food could taste like old fish.

Crisco Blends

Instant Espresso Powder

Published March 1, 2010.

Is the right espresso powder the secret to intense chocolate flavor in brownies and other baked goods?

Caffe D'Vita Imported Premium Instant Espresso

White Chocolate

Published November 1, 2009.

We tasted real white chocolate alongside "fake" supermarket brands to determine if the real deal was worth tracking down.

White Chocolate


Published November 1, 2009.

Cinnamon used to be the most basic spice in your cupboard. Now it’s gone upscale. So will a fancy brand from Vietnam costing $8 an ounce actually make baked goods taste better?


Stone-Ground Oats

Published July 1, 2009.

We tested one brand of stone-ground oats. Could they please our tasters' palates?

Bob's Red Mill Scottish Oats

Quick Oats

Published July 1, 2009.

For emergencies only?

Quaker Quick Oats

Steel-Cut Oats

Published July 1, 2009.

Judging from the brands and styles cramming supermarket shelves, there's an oat for almost every taste. Are any better for breakfast or for baking?

bob's red mill steel cut oats

Rolled Oats

Published July 1, 2009.

We prefer rolled oats for baking. Here are our recommendations for what brand to use.

Rolled Oats

Milk Chocolate Chips

Published May 1, 2009.

We were looking for a chip with intense chocolate flavor, moderate sugar, and a goodly amount of cocoa butter.

Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Chips

Dark Chocolate Chips

Published May 1, 2009.

Do Nestlé Toll House morsels still deserve to be the nation’s top-selling chips?

Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Chips

Vanilla Extract

Published March 1, 2009.

In the battle of pure versus imitation extracts, could we declare a winner?

Vanilla Extract

Dark Chocolate

Published December 31, 2007.

Does spending more for "gourmet" chocolate buy richer, more complex flavor and yield better baking results?

Callebaut Intense Dark Chocolate, L-60-40NV

Lemon Curd

Published April 1, 2007.

We tasted jarred varieties to see if we could find an acceptable substitute for home-made.

Lemon Curd
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