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  • Writer's pictureMelissa

Zingy Candy Powder

Updated: Jun 2, 2021

I find edible science is almost always a hit. In this activity you will experience a chemical reaction on your tongue!


  • 1 plastic container with a lid that seals well or a ziploc bag

  • 1 packet of Kool-Aid - generic is fine just look for citric acid in the ingredient list

  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

*This activity will also work well if you halve or even quarter all the reactants (ingredients). A Kool-aid packet contains nearly 1 teaspoon of powder.


1) Add the Kool-aid and baking soda to your plastic container, seal and shake to mix.

2) Add the powdered sugar to the container, seal and shake things up again to mix the powders very well.

3) Open your container, lick your finger, touch the powder, and then touch your tongue with your powdery finger. What do you notice? How does the powder taste? How does your tongue feel?

4) Cleanup: safe to rinse down the drain or throw in the trash. Your finger may temporarily get a bit stained from the food coloring in the Kool-aid.


When citric acid and baking soda dissolve in the saliva on your tongue, a gas-producing chemical reaction happens. How do you know? That zingy or foamy feeling on your tongue is the result of carbon dioxide bubbles forming!

Try the reaction with a mirror handy to look at your tongue after you lick the powder off your finger. Can you see bubbles?

If a chemical reaction happens when citric acid (from Kool-aid) and sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) molecules rearrange, producing carbon dioxide gas, why add powdered sugar? While the reaction will work with just Kool-aid and baking soda, citric acid is quite sour and baking soda is bitter. The powdered sugar makes this reaction taste better.

Click below to download a pdf of the Zingy Candy Powder DIY science kit for easier printing.

Zingy Candy Powder
Download PDF • 40KB

Make messes, have fun and spread science joy!

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