Baking at High Altitudes

We're located in Ogden Utah at an altitude ranging from 4,300 feet to 5,200 feet.  Not much can be more disheartening than finding the perfect recipe, baking it, and having it fail in some way.

Baking at high altitudes can be a bit challenging at times.  Fallen cakes, flat cookies, dry doughs, and more.  We hope our tips will help guarantee your baking success...even at high altitudes.

Recipes developed at sea level often react differently when baked at high altitudes.  The reason for this is a reduction in atmospheric pressure, or in other words, there's less air pressure.

This means that water boils at a lower temperature, leaveners react with more force, whipped eggs expand more quickly, and sugar becomes more concentrated (due to rapid water loss).  Imagine that!  Baked goods will actually end up sweeter the higher up they're baked.

Fats can cause problems too. When the gases are expanding and stretching the structure of the baked good, fats can concentrate, resulting in greasiness or mushiness. Decreasing the amount of fat by even a tablespoon can solve that.

Now, keep in mind that recipes baked at lower high elevations (like 4,300 feet) may turn out just fine, but the higher you go, the more adjusting you may have to make.  We're just giving guidelines and suggestions so that in case something does go wrong you have an idea of how to fix it.

Here's to your high altitude baking success!

Do you have experience baking at high altitudes?  We'd love to read your stories and tips in the comments section below.

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