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Skittles Rainbow Experiment


Hey friends. Hope you’re having a great weekend. There’s nothing better than spending quality time with the kids. This week we’ll be exploring the wonders of science. Does your family love science experiments as much as we do? I love crafting with my kids, but the “ohhhhh’s and ahhhh’s” I hear every time we do a science experiment are priceless. Today we’re going to be making a rainbow with the Skittles Rainbow Experiment. Get ready for some serious fun—it’s going to be an absolute blast!

If you’ve been hanging out with us for a while, you know I’m all about keeping things simple when it comes to crafts for kids. Well, this science experiment is about as easy as it gets, and trust me, the kids are going to love this one! So, grab those Skittles, round up your young scientists, and let’s get right into the fun!

Skittles Rainbow Experiment

What You Need

  • Skittles (experiment with the different colors)
  • plate
  • warm water

What To Do

Step 1

Arrange your Skittles in a large circle around the plate. You can experiment with different color patterns. Alternate the colors in the same order, or do color blocking by placing the same colors next to each other.


Step 2

Once your Skittles are arranged, pour warm water in the center of the plate until it gets to the edge of the candy. Watch the magic happen!


The Science Behind The Skittles Rainbow Experiment

Each Skittle candy is made up of sugar with food coloring. When we add warm water to the Skittles, something cool happens! The water starts to dissolve the sugar on the outside of the Skittles.

As the sugar dissolves, it lets the colors out, like a secret rainbow hiding inside each candy! Then, these colors start to spread out in the water, making a beautiful rainbow pattern. There are two scientific terms at play in this experiment we are going to explore.


This spreading out of the color is called diffusion, which is the movement of color molecules from high concentration of color (where the Skittles are) to areas of low concentration (other parts of the water). As the colored dyes spread out, they move along the concentration gradient. This process continues until the concentration of colored dyes is uniform throughout the water.

Concentration Gradient

The concentration gradient refers to the difference in concentration of a substance between two areas. In the Skittles experiment, it represents the difference in concentration of the colored dyes between the area where the Skittles are placed and the surrounding water. Initially, there is a high concentration of colored dyes around the Skittles and a low concentration in the surrounding water. This concentration gradient drives the process of diffusion.


So, when we watch the colors spread out from the Skittles, we’re seeing science in action! It’s like magic happening right in front of our eyes. And that’s why the Skittles Experiment is so much fun—it helps us learn about colors and how they move, all while we get to enjoy a tasty treat!

The reason the colors do not mix together is due to water stratification. Each color when dissolved creates a water solution with slightly different properties which creates a barrier that prevents the colors from mixing.


Explore Additional Fun Variations of this Experiment

– experiment with color variations (eg. different colored skittles, or arrange the colors on the plate in different patterns)

– try using cold water and note what happens and how long it takes for the rainbow to form in comparison to using warm water and hot water

– try using a different liquids to see how it affects the color spreading (eg. vinegar, milk, soda)

– once the colors have bled to the center of the plate add a sugar cube to the center and note what happens.

– do a comparison using different colored candies (eg. M&M’s, Smarties)

How fun was that?! I hope you enjoyed this science experiment as much as we did. Now that you’ve made a rainbow, it’s time to taste the rainbow…..with all the leftover Skittles!

Until next time


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