why do sugar cubes dissolve more slowly than granulated sugar

When combined with liquid, the separate grains of sugar have more surface area in contact with the liquid which allows them to dissolve more quickly. Sugar cubes have grains p
acked tightly together so that not all surfaces of all the grains are initially in full contact with the liquid.

Until the cube loses its integrity from soaking and becoming wet and the grains begin to come apart from each other, they will not dissolve as quickly.   A: Dissolving only takes place when the liquid can interact with the solid.

A spoonful of sugar is loose, therefore more of the sugar touches the liquid. In a sugar cube most of the sugar is on the inside of the cube and cannot interact with the liquid until the outside dissolves.

Think of it like waiting in a checkout line at a store. If only one lane is open it will take longer than if lots of lanes are open, because you have to wait for the people in front of you to checkout. It is very much the same idea with dissolving.

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