Milk Art—The Classic Milk and Dish Soap Science Experiment Gets a New Artistic Twist!

Turn the classic science experiment with milk, dish soap, and food coloring into an art project

You may have enjoyed the science experiment that mixes milk, food coloring, and dish soap, but have you ever turned it into art?

Instructions for creating Milk Art by Family FED

Download a PDF of this activity’s “recipe” to add to your family activity binder.

 Supplies for Milk Art based on the classic science experiment by Family FED

What You’ll Need

How to Play

1. Fill a small tray with whole milk. Put a little dish soap in a small bowl.

Classic science experiment with milk and dish soap.add food coloring
2. Add drops of food coloring onto the milk.

Classic science experiment with milk and dish soap.adding the soap

3. Dip a toothpick into the dish soap and touch it to your food coloring.
4. Continue “drawing” with the soap to create your art.

Classic science experiment with milk and dish soap.dip paper into milk mixture
5. Lightly place a watercolor paper on top. Remove; dry.


Art created by mixing milk, dish soap, and food coloring

1. Photograph the art in the tray instead of transferring it to paper for a bolder, sharper image.

Classic science experiment with milk and dish soap.mask off part of the art
2. Use painter’s tape on the watercolor paper to mask off sections that you don’t want colored.


    Classic science experiment with milk and dish soap.lift carefully

    • The art will have a soft look when transferred to the paper (see the paper above compared with the in-tray image in adaptation #1).
    • While the paper dries, lift it regularly to prevent it from sticking to the glass pan or cookie sheet.
    • The art never went moldy or smelly for us, even after many weeks.
    • Have plenty of food coloring on hand; younger kids will want to use it up quickly! ;)

    Conversation Starter

    Not everything seems like it would come together to create a masterpiece. But you may be surprised at how well different matters blend. It’s the same with people; you may not think some people could become good friends, but when you get to know them, you might find a wonderful connection. What friendships are waiting for you, and how can you build them?

    Why This Activity Matters

    If you have some children who like science and some who like art, this is a great way to bring them both together and help them see how their various interests can work together. What other collaboration might it spark among their interests?



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    arts and crafts dish soap food coloring fun with food milk science STEAM STEM

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