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Vinegar Volcanoes

A fun, science classic using vinegar and baking soda that can also be used to make a crispy batter for a yummy tea….


Volcanoes: bicarbonate of soda (baking soda), vinegar, flour, salt, oil, selection of vegetables

Veggies: bicarbonate of soda, vinegar, foil, egg cup/shot glass, small plate/saucer, tray, food colour/paint (red, yellow or orange), washing-up liquid


Our onion rings were actually slices and look more like crispy prawns!

1. Prepare your supper

  • Prepare the vegetables (chop onions into rings and peppers, courgettes or carrots into thin sticks, top and tail green beans, chop broccoli into small florets, use sweetcorn to make fritters)

  • Mix half a cup of flour with 1/2 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp baking soda

  • Add half a cup of water and 1 tbsp vinegar and mix well

  • Heat 2 tbsp oil in a frying pan or wok

  • Dip the vegetables in the batter and fry in batches until golden

  • Tip: take care with the hot oil - lay away from you as you put them in

  • Drain on kitchen paper and sprinkle with a little salt

2. Do some science

  • Place the glass or egg cup on a small plate then cover with foil as shown and poke a hole in the top to make your volcano, use a tray to contain the mess

  • Add 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda to the egg cup

  • Add some food colouring/paint plus squirt of washing up liquid

  • Add a spash of vinegar and watch it erupt

What’s going on? The science in a sentence… Vinegar, an acid, reacts with the bicarbonate of soda, a base, to produce the bubbles of gas called carbon dioxide.


Experiment with different containers (thin tubes work well), colours and quantities for the volcano. Can you make a rainbow one? There are some great videos of vinegar volcanos online; check out this one from Ryan’s World.

The batter also works well with fish – serve with chips and peas for the perfect Friday night supper. If you find the batter doesn’t stick well to fish, try dusting with flour first.

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