Cooking & Food Science STEM Activities for Kids (18 results)

Who doesn't love food? It's fun to make, it's fun to eat, it's fun to ...study? That's right! There is a lot of science that goes into the everyday foods that you love. Explore questions such as how baking ingredients work, how and why certain ingredients mix well together, and why people's tastes differ.

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Did you ever bake your ice cream? An insulated bag or a cooler filled with ice can keep a treat like ice cream cool. Using the same principles, it is even possible to bake ice cream in a hot oven and have it come out frozen! This activity will teach you how. Read more
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Have you ever tried adding green food coloring to your milk? Or blue coloring to the butter you spread on your bread? You may not have tried this, but for years, scientists have studied the effect of color and food appearance on how food tastes. Believe it or not, our eyes are an important part of how we taste and perceive food! In this activity, you will learn about how you can trick your taste buds—with just a little food coloring! Read more
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Does your family have jellied cranberry sauce with Thanksgiving dinner? Jellied cranberries are thick and retain the shape of the mold in which they are placed, which might mean a turkey-shaped mold or even the shape of the can if you use a canned version. Taking a bite of jiggly jellied cranberries can be a fun addition to a delicious meal, but cranberries can also be served as a liquid-like sauce. Both versions use the same ingredients, so what makes one turn into a gelatin while the other… Read more
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Have you ever dropped your phone in the water and it stopped working? It would be great if you could somehow dry the phone from the inside before it got damaged, right? There are actually some substances that can absorb water from their surroundings. You might have noticed that when you buy new shoes, electronics or beef jerky, that often there is a little package inside that says “silica gel, do not eat.” This little bag of silica gel protects the product from water damage when it… Read more
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Do you like popcorn? It’s not only a tasty snack but also fascinating to watch when it pops in the pot. But why does it do that? What makes the small popcorn kernel jump into the air and change its appearance? Where does the characteristic popping sound come from and does every corn pop? There are many good questions about such a simple snack. Are you curious to find out some answers? In this activity you will do some popcorn science and even get to snack on your experiment. Read more
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Food advertisements and labels bombard us with enticing slogans and attractive images, luring us into consuming the food. But have you ever wondered how nutritious the food is? Have you ever looked at a nutrition facts label and wondered what the columns of words and numbers meant? This activity will shed some light on the label. You will explore serving sizes and nutrients, and might find a discrepancy. Why would the sum of the nutrients not always add up to the total?  Like a detective,… Read more
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Have you ever wondered why apple slices turn brown once you cut them or why a yellow banana gets dark spots over time? Both of these phenomena have the same cause: enzymatic browning triggered by an enzyme called polyphenol oxidase (PPO). In this activity you will find out how this enzyme works by turning a banana from yellow to brown in just a matter of seconds. Then you will explore how you can keep your apple slices looking fresh! Read more
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Do you enjoy getting creative in the kitchen? If so, this activity is for you! Molecular cuisine—taking tools, ingredients, and methods typically used in science and using them in cooking—might sound fancy and complicated, but some techniques are easy to replicate! Get your hands wet, fire up your creativity, and see how rewarding it can be! Read more
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Did you know you can grow your own lollipop? In this activity, you'll learn how to grow your very own rock candy. It is an easy process and not labor-intensive. So, what are you waiting for? See how large you can grow your sugar crystals before temptation takes over. Read more
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Have you ever found an egg in your refrigerator and wondered if it was cooked? Although eggs drastically change inside their shells when cooked, it is still remarkably difficult to distinguish a cooked egg from a raw one without cracking it open. In this activity, you will find out how physics can help you tell the difference! Read more
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