Baking a cake is a delicious way to use chemical reactions to make something sweet! But is it really a chemical change?
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What is a chemical change?
A chemical change is a permanent change in the chemical composition of a substance. When you mix together two substances, you may get a new substance with different properties. For example, when you bake a cake, the flour, sugar, eggs, and butter (substances) are combined and changed into a new substance—cake batter. The cake batter is then changed into an entirely new substance—cake—when it is baked in the oven (another chemical change).
What are the characteristics of a chemical change?
In order to understand if baking a cake is considered a chemical reaction, we must first understand what a chemical reaction is. A chemical reaction is a process that leads to the structural transformation of one or more substances into different substances. The substances that are involved in the reaction are called reactants, and the new substances that are created are called products.
In order for a chemical reaction to take place, there must be a change in the chemical bonds that hold the atoms of the reactants together. This breakage of bonds is called oxidation, and it requires energy. The energy can come from heat, light, or electricity. When the bonds are broken, the atoms rearrange themselves into new combinations, forming new bonds to create the products.
The products of a chemical reaction will have different properties than the reactants. For example, when iron rusts, it combines with oxygen to form iron oxide. The iron oxide has a red color and is flaky — it has completely different properties than iron.
So, now that we know what a chemical reaction is, let’s see if baking a cake meets these criteria.
Cakes are made from a variety of ingredients including flour, sugar, eggs, butter, baking powder, milk, and vanilla extract. When these ingredients are combined and baked in an oven, they undergo several changes including drying out (evaporation), rising (expansion), and browning (maillard reaction).
The end result is indeed a cake that looks and tastes different from its individual ingredients. It can be concluded that baking a cake does indeed involve chemical changes.
What are some examples of chemical changes?
A chemical change is a permanent change in the chemical properties of a substance. The substances involved in a chemical change are called reactants, and the substances produced are called products.
There are many different types of chemical changes, but some common examples include:
So, is baking a cake a chemical change?
In order to determine whether or not baking a cake is a chemical change, we need to first understand what a chemical change is. A chemical change is a change that results in the formation of one or more new substances.
So, when we bake a cake, are we forming new substances? The answer is yes! When we bake a cake, the ingredients undergo several changes. For example, the flour changes from being a fine powder to a solid mass. The eggs change from being liquid to solid. And the butter changes from being a solid to liquid.
The changes that occur when we bake a cake are all examples of chemical changes. So, in conclusion, yes, baking a cake is a chemical change!