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Published Apr 26, 2024 ⦁ 17 min read
Easy Experiments for 5 Year Olds: Kitchen Science

Easy Experiments for 5 Year Olds: Kitchen Science

Discover the wonders of kitchen science with these easy experiments perfect for 5 year olds! From creating a bouncy egg to making your own ice cream, these activities are safe, fun, and educational. They're designed to engage young minds with simple household items and provide a hands-on learning experience. Here's what you and your little scientist can explore together:

  • Magic Milk Experiment: Watch colors dance with milk, food coloring, and dish soap.
  • Bouncy Egg Science Lab: Turn a regular egg into a bouncy ball using vinegar.
  • Fizzy Color Changing Reaction: Mix baking soda, vinegar, and food coloring for a fizzy, colorful reaction.
  • Homemade Ice Cream: Learn about freezing points by making ice cream in a bag.
  • Dancing Raisins: Create dancing raisins with a simple chemical reaction.

These experiments not only teach basic science concepts like chemical reactions, density, and states of matter but also life skills such as following instructions and cleaning up. Perfect for a fun and educational activity at home, these kitchen science experiments promise quality bonding time while sparking curiosity in young learners.

Why Kitchen Science is Great for 5-Year-Olds

Kitchen science is perfect for little kids because:

  • It's safe. Everything used is safe to touch and play with under an adult's watch.
  • Kids can learn by doing. They get to mix, pour, and mess around with stuff, which helps them learn better.
  • It makes them curious. Seeing how things change and react makes kids want to ask questions and learn why things happen.
  • It teaches basic science. Even while having fun, kids start to understand simple science ideas.
  • Kids feel like they can do it. Being able to mix things together and see what happens makes kids feel good about what they can do.
  • You already have what you need. You don't need any special tools or ingredients.
  • It's something kids and adults can do together. Doing experiments together is a great way for kids to learn and for everyone to have fun.
  • It's just plain fun! Who wouldn't love to see baking soda and vinegar bubble up or make their own slime?

Kitchen science is a great way to start learning about science in a fun and easy way, using things you already have at home.

Getting Ready for Kitchen Science Fun

Before starting your kitchen science experiments, it's important to make sure you have a safe and neat place to work. Here are some easy steps to prepare:

Making a Safe Space for Experiments

  • Put down plastic covers or newspapers on your tables and counters to keep them clean.

  • Let kids wear old clothes or aprons to protect their outfits.

  • Keep some paper towels close by for quick cleanups.

  • Use things like plates or bowls for mixing stuff together.

  • A small step stool can help kids reach better.

  • Remind everyone to wash their hands before and after the fun.

  • Always watch over the kids closely during these activities.

What You Need for Kitchen Science

Here's a list of common things you'll need for a lot of the kitchen science experiments:

  • Baking soda - great for reactions
  • Vinegar - when mixed with baking soda, it makes bubbles
  • Food coloring - makes everything more colorful
  • Cornstarch - for making cool slimy stuff
  • Water - needed for many experiments
  • Vegetable oil - used in some liquid experiments
  • Salt - helps with experiments about floating and sinking
  • Sugar or honey - fun for sweet experiments
  • Dish soap - can make big bubbles
  • Balloons - for experiments that need to capture gas
  • Plastic containers - to mix and store your experiments
  • Spoons & funnels - helps with pouring and mixing
  • Ziploc bags - good for squishy experiments

With these items ready, you'll be all set to start exploring science in the kitchen with your 5-year-old. Just remember to have fun and be curious!

Experiment 1: Magic Milk

Conducting the Magic Milk Experiment

Let's do a fun experiment called Magic Milk. Here's how you can do it with your little one:

  1. What you need:

    • Whole milk
    • Food coloring (a few different colors)
    • Liquid dish soap
    • A shallow dish or plate
    • Toothpicks
  2. Pour milk into the dish until it covers the bottom.

  3. Let your child drop different food coloring spots into the milk. Tell them to scatter the drops around.

  4. Hold off on mixing. Now, we'll see something cool!

  5. Put a little bit of dish soap on the tip of a toothpick.

  6. Gently touch the soapy toothpick to the milk where the food coloring is.

  7. Watch as the colors start moving and creating fun patterns!

  8. Your child can keep using new toothpicks with soap to mix the colors more.

  9. Remember, we can't drink the milk after this, so make sure no one tries to taste it.

The Science Behind the Magic Milk

Wondering why this happens? Here's an easy way to understand:

  • Milk has fat in it, and all those fat bits stick together.

  • Food coloring doesn't mix well with fat normally.

  • Dish soap can break down fat.

  • When you touch the milk with a soapy toothpick, the soap starts breaking down the fat right there.

  • This breaking down lets the food coloring move around.

  • As the soap keeps breaking down fat, the colors can swirl and mix easily.

So, the dish soap makes it possible for the food coloring to mix into the milk, creating all those cool colors!

Experiment 2: Bouncy Egg Science Lab

Creating a Bouncy Egg

Here's a simple way to make an egg bounce:

  1. Put an egg in a clear jar or a tall glass.

  2. Pour vinegar over the egg until it's completely covered.

  3. Leave the egg in the vinegar for two whole days. You can gently move the jar around now and then to help the vinegar do its job.

  4. After two days, carefully take the egg out with a spoon.

  5. Wash the egg under water and gently rub off the shell. It should peel off easily.

  6. What you have now is the egg without its hard shell, covered by a soft, bouncy layer.

  7. Give your bouncy egg a final rinse, and it's ready to be gently bounced!

Why the Egg Becomes Bouncy

Here's why the egg turns bouncy after sitting in vinegar:

  • Eggshells are made of something called calcium carbonate.

  • Vinegar has acetic acid in it.

  • When the eggshell and vinegar mix, they react. This reaction slowly breaks down the eggshell.

  • After soaking for two days, the shell turns soft and rubbery.

  • That's how the hard shell is easily removed, leaving behind the egg covered in a stretchy layer.

This reaction changes the eggshell from hard to soft, making it fun to bounce around. Just be gentle with it. This experiment is a cool way to see science in action right from your kitchen.

Experiment 3: Fizzy Color Changing Reaction

Conducting the Fizzy Color Reaction

Here's a really cool way to see colors change and fizz up with stuff from your kitchen:

What You Need:

  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Food coloring (a few different colors)
  • Tall clear glass or jar
  • Spoon for mixing


  1. Put 1 tablespoon of baking soda into the glass.

  2. Let your kid drop about 10 drops of food coloring on the baking soda. They can choose their favorite color.

  3. Slowly add some vinegar. Your kid can help with this part, just be careful. You'll need about 1/4 cup.

  4. Watch the fizz and color change happen!

  5. Now, add another spoon of baking soda and choose a different food coloring.

  6. Pour in more vinegar and see the fizz and color change again!

  7. Keep going until you have a bunch of fizzing colors.

  8. Do this over a sink or outside because it might get messy.

This is a fun way for your kid to mix things up and watch the colors bubble and change!

The Chemistry Behind This Color Mixing

Let's talk about why this happens:

  • Baking soda is a base. It's made of something called sodium bicarbonate.

  • Vinegar is an acid because it has acetic acid in it.

  • When you mix a base (like baking soda) with an acid (like vinegar), they react and create lots of bubbles. These bubbles are carbon dioxide gas.

  • The food coloring spreads out in the bubbles, changing the color of the mix as they grow.

  • Adding more baking soda and vinegar keeps the reaction going, making more bubbles and colors.

So, what your child sees is a basic acid-base reaction. The mixing of the acid and base makes all those colorful bubbles. It's a great way to show kids how mixing different things can cause fun changes right before their eyes!

Experiment 4: Homemade Ice Cream

Making Ice Cream in a Bag

Let's make some ice cream with things you have at home:

  • A small Ziploc bag (pint size)
  • A big Ziploc bag (gallon size)
  • 1/2 cup of milk or cream
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar
  • A little bit of vanilla extract (1/4 teaspoon)
  • Ice cubes
  • 6 tablespoons of rock salt


  1. Mix the milk, sugar, and vanilla in the small bag. Seal it well so nothing leaks.
  2. Fill the big bag half full with ice cubes.
  3. Sprinkle the rock salt over the ice.
  4. Put the small bag inside the big one and seal it tight.
  5. Shake the big bag around for about 5-10 minutes until the mix turns into ice cream.
  6. Open the big bag, take out the small one, and then open it.
  7. Scoop out your ice cream and enjoy it!

How Adding Salt Makes It Work

Here's a simple way to understand how salt helps make ice cream:

  • Ice usually melts at 32°F. But for our mix to turn into ice cream, it needs to be colder.

  • Adding salt to ice makes it melt at a lower temperature than usual.

  • When the ice melts, it takes in heat from around it, which makes things colder.

  • This means the ice cream mix in the small bag gets really cold, cold enough to freeze.

  • Adding more salt can make the ice even colder, so our ice cream freezes faster.

Using salt to lower the freezing point is a neat trick that lets us make ice cream. It's a fun way to learn about freezing points and enjoy a tasty treat.


Experiment 5: Dancing Raisins

Creating Dancing Raisins

Let's make raisins dance with a simple experiment:

What You Need:

  • A clear glass
  • Water
  • White vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Raisins


  1. Pour water into the glass until it's about 3/4 full.

  2. Mix in a few big spoons of vinegar.

  3. Add a big spoon of baking soda. It will fizz up!

  4. Drop some raisins into the glass. They'll start to move up and down.

  5. The raisins will keep sinking and floating, like they're dancing.

  6. If the fizzing slows, add more raisins to keep it going.

  7. When done, just pour it out and rinse the glass.

This experiment is a neat way to watch a chemical reaction. It's fun and easy to do at home!

Why the Raisins Dance

Here's what's happening with the dancing raisins:

  • The vinegar and baking soda mix to make gas bubbles.

  • These bubbles stick to the raisins and make them light enough to float.

  • Once the bubbles pop, the raisins sink again.

  • Then, more bubbles lift them up, and this keeps happening.

It's the bubbles that make the raisins move up and down. This shows how gas can make things float or sink. It's a cool way to learn about science with a fun kitchen experiment.

Wrapping Up: What We Learned

Kitchen science is a great way for 5-year-olds to learn about science in a fun way. Here's what they get to learn:

Science Concepts

  • Chemical reactions - Mixing baking soda and vinegar makes bubbles.

  • Acids and bases - Vinegar is an acid and baking soda is a base. When they come together, they fizz.

  • States of matter - Watching liquids turn into solids, like when we make ice cream.

  • Density - Understanding why some things like raisins can float or sink.

  • Color mixing - Learning what happens when different colors are mixed together.

Life Skills

  • Following instructions - Learning to read and follow steps.

  • Fine motor skills - Getting better at pouring, stirring, and using small tools.

  • Cause and effect - Seeing the results of what they do.

  • Responsibility - Learning to help set up and clean up.

  • Cleaning up - Understanding the importance of tidying up after making a mess.

Bonding Together

  • Sparking curiosity - Kids get curious and ask questions.
  • Encouragement - Feeling proud when experiments work out.
  • Quality time - Spending focused time together strengthens bonds.
  • Happy memories - The fun and laughs make lasting memories.

Doing these kitchen science activities is a safe way for kids to explore science basics while having a great time with family. It's a wonderful way to encourage your child's love for learning.

Kitchen Science Safety Tips

When you're doing science experiments in the kitchen with little ones, it's super important to keep everyone safe. Here's how:

Supervision is Key

  • Always have an adult watch kids under 10 during kitchen activities. Things can go wrong quickly, so it's best to keep an eye on them.
  • Remind kids not to eat or taste any of the experiment materials. Not everything is safe to eat.
  • Everyone should wash their hands before and after doing experiments to keep germs and any harmful stuff away.

Protect Your Work Area

  • Use plastic covers or wax paper to keep counters clean. Spills are easier to clean up this way.
  • Wear old clothes or aprons to avoid staining your good clothes.
  • Lay down newspapers or paper towels to quickly soak up any mess.

Use Safe Household Items

  • Stick to using safe things from around the house that won't hurt anyone if they're touched or swallowed by accident.
  • Read labels and stay away from anything that says it's toxic or dangerous.
  • Go for child-friendly tools like plastic bowls and blunt scissors instead of sharp or breakable ones.

Clean and Store Properly

  • Throw away any leftover mixtures to prevent any mix-ups or contamination.
  • Clean all your tools and the area you used after you're done.
  • Keep all the materials used for experiments out of reach from kids when you're not using them.

By following these simple safety tips, you can have a blast with kitchen science while keeping everyone safe. It's all about watching closely, guiding them, and enjoying the fun of learning together.

Experiment Variations and Further Exploration

Here are some simple ways to change up the experiments or learn even more:

Trying Experiment Variations

  • For the Magic Milk, see what happens when you use almond or soy milk instead. Does it change the way the colors move?

  • With the Bouncy Egg, let it sit in vinegar for 3 or 4 days instead of just two. Check if it becomes even more bouncy.

  • For the Fizzy Colors, use a taller glass and add the food coloring after the vinegar. Watch to see how the colors blend together.

  • When making ice cream in a bag, toss in some sprinkles, chocolate chips, or bits of fruit to change the taste.

  • Try using lemon juice or club soda for the Dancing Raisins instead of vinegar or baking soda water.

Making Experiments More Challenging

  • Time the Bouncy Egg to see how long it takes to peel after soaking. Does changing the vinegar's temperature make the shell come off faster or slower?

  • For Fizzy Colors, pour the vinegar into the baking soda very slowly. Try to catch the moment right before it starts to bubble.

  • With the ice cream, guess how the salt changes the freezing point before you start. Check how cold the ice cream gets as you shake the bag.

  • Count the bubbles on a raisin in the Dancing Raisins experiment. See how long it takes for a raisin to go up and down.

Further Exploration of Concepts

  • Look up why chemical reactions happen, what makes acids and bases, and how different states of matter change.

  • Learn about density by testing which household objects float or sink.

  • Explore color mixing by using a color wheel. Try making your own colors.

  • Find out more about how things like soap work to clean with vinegar or how mixing things can make new stuff like in the Milk Swirl Experiment.

The main idea is to keep asking questions and trying new things to see more about how science works in everyday life.

Can scientific experiments be done in a kitchen?

Absolutely! Your kitchen is a great place for science experiments. You can:

  • Create bubbles by mixing baking soda and vinegar
  • Make slime with cornstarch, water, and food coloring
  • See if fruits and veggies float or sink in water
  • Compare how fast honey, oil, and milk slide down a slope
  • Learn about density and matter by making homemade ice cream

Just remember to use safe stuff and have an adult around. Your kitchen is a perfect spot to get hands-on with science.

What are some good food experiments?

Here are some cool food experiments to try:

  • Shake heavy cream to make butter
  • Grow sugar crystals in sugar water
  • Pull out strawberry DNA with dish soap
  • Watch yeast make bread rise
  • Use coffee filters to see how liquids spread
  • See how salt, sugar, and baking soda affect ice melting
  • Make a volcano with baking soda and vinegar
  • Turn milk into plastic using vinegar

These experiments are not only fun but also teach you science with tasty ingredients.

What's another example of science in the kitchen?

Eggs are full of science! Try these egg experiments:

  • Soak eggs in different liquids to see how the shells change
  • Cook eggs in various ways and see how they're different
  • Soak eggs in syrup to change their size
  • Test the bounciness of hard-boiled eggs
  • Put an egg in oil and water to see density in action

Eggs are a fun and safe way to see science in action right in your kitchen.

How is science used in the kitchen?

When you cook or bake, you're using science. Here's how:

  • Heat changes food in cool ways
  • Acids and bases like baking soda and vinegar react together
  • Mixing ingredients in the right amounts makes your food taste good
  • Making sauces and dressings shows how liquids can mix
  • Cooking sugar or making jam changes it through science
  • Using microbes to ferment food
  • Softening meat with special enzymes
  • Keeping food good for longer with pickling or freezing

So, every time you're cooking, you're actually doing science experiments with delicious results!

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