Watch their faces light up and their eyes widen when you test out cool chemistry with this erupting lemon volcano. You will definitely get a positive reaction from the kiddos (pun intended). We enjoy all kinds of simple science experiments using common household ingredients.

ERUPTING LEMON VOLCANO SCIENCE EXPERIMENT

Simple erupting lemon volcano chemistry experiment for kitchen science. Try out baking soda and vinegar activities for classic science experiments and learn about a simple chemical reaction with colorful lemon volcanos. How about limes too?

VOLCANO SCIENCE

Do you know this lemon volcano experiment was one of our top 10 experiments of all time? Check out more fun science experiments for kids.

We do love all things that erupt and have been exploring different ways to create eruptions while having fun through play. Science that fizzes, pops, erupts, bangs, and explodes is pretty awesome for kids of all ages!

Some of our favorite volcanos around here include apple volcanos, pumpkin volcanos, and a Lego volcano! We have even tried erupting volcano slime.

One of the things that we strive to do here is to create playful science setups that are extremely hands-on, maybe a little messy, and a whole lot of fun. They may be somewhat open-ended, contain an element of play, and definitely a whole lot of repeatability!

Also we have experimented with citrus reactions, so an erupting lemon volcano experiment is a natural fit for us! All you need are a few common kitchen ingredients to make your lemon juice volcano. Read on for the full supply list and set up.

WHAT IS THE SCIENCE BEHIND THE LEMON VOLCANO?

Let’s keep it basic for our younger or junior scientists! When you mix the baking soda with the lemon juice they react and form a gas called carbon dioxide which then produces the fizzing eruption you can see.

This chemical reaction occurs because of an acid {the lemon juice} mixing with a base {baking soda}. When the two combine the reaction takes place and the gas is created.

If you add dish soap, you will notice a more foamy eruption like in our watermelon volcano.

Our exploding lemon volcano is simple chemistry you can do at home or in the classroom that isn’t too crazy, but is still lots of fun for kids! Check out more chemistry activities.

baking soda and vinegar lemon volcano chemistry science

What is the scientific method?

The scientific method is a process or method of research. A problem is identified, information about the problem is gathered, a hypothesis or question is formulated from the information, and the hypothesis is put to test with an experiment to prove or disprove its validity.  Sounds heavy…

What in the world does that mean?!? The scientific method should simply be used as a guide to help lead the process. It’s not set in stone.

You don’t need to try and solve the world’s biggest science questions! The scientific method is all about studying and learning things right around you.

As kids develop practices that involve creating, gathering data evaluating, analyzing, and communicating, they can apply these critical thinking skills to any situation. To learn more about the scientific method and how to use it, click here.

Even though the scientific method feels like it is just for big kids…

This method can be used with kids of all ages! Have a casual conversation with younger kiddos or do a more formal notebook entry with older kiddos!

Click here to get your FREE Science Process Pack

MAKE AN ERUPTING LEMON VOLCANO

Make sure the following supplies are on your next grocery shopping list and you will be ready for an afternoon of exploration and discovery with your kids.

SUPPLIES:

  • Lemons (grab a few!)
  • Baking Soda
  • Food Coloring
  • Dawn Dish Soap
  • Plate, Tray, or Bowl
  •  Craft Sticks
  • Lemon Juice (optional: pick up a small bottle or use the juice from another lemon)
lemon volcano supplies

LEMON VOLCANO EXPERIMENT SET UP

STEP 1: First, you need to place half of a lemon into a bowl or plate that will catch the mess when it erupts.

You can juice the other half of the lemon to add to the erupting lemon volcano which you will read about below. Or you can set up two at a time! 

EXPERIMENT: Try this with a variety of citrus fruits to see which produces the best eruption! What’s your guess?

STEP 2: Next, take your craft stick and poke holes in the various sections of the lemon. This will help get the reaction started in the beginning.

breaking up lemon for lemon volcano science

STEP 3: Now you can place drops of food coloring around the different sections on the top of the lemon.

Alternating with different colors of food coloring will give a fun effect. However, you can also stick with just a couple of colors or even one-color! 

STEP 4: Pour some Dawn dish soap all over the top of the lemon.

What does dish soap do? Adding dish soap to a reaction like this produces a bit of foam and bubbles! It’s not necessary but a fun element to add if you can.

adding food coloring for lemon volcano

STEP 5: Go ahead and sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda onto the top of the lemon.

Then use a craft stick to press some of the baking soda down into the different sections of the lemon to get the eruption going.

Wait a few minutes for the reaction to begin taking place. Slowly, your lemon will begin to erupt into a variety of colors. Additionally, you can use the craft stick to mash the lemon and baking soda around a bit more!

Did you know that you can make fizzy lemonade for edible science?

adding baking soda to lemon volcano

You can add some additional baking soda when the first round of erupting has taken place to continue the reaction.

erupting lemon volcano chemistry activity for kids

Want printable instructions for your science activities all in one place? It’s time to join the Library Club!

LITTLE BINS LibrarY club

This experiment produces a very slow eruption of color. If you would like things to move a bit faster or to be more dramatic, you can pour a little extra lemon juice on top of the lemon as well.

Your erupting lemon volcano will be a big hit, and I am pretty sure your kids are going to want to keep testing it out! That’s what makes it great for playful science.

CHECK OUT >>>35 Best Kitchen Science Experiments

squeezing lemon juice onto lemon volcano

MORE FUN SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS

Check out our list of science experiments for Jr Scientists!

COOL CHEMISTRY WITH A LEMON BAKING SODA EXPERIMENT

Click on the image below or on the link for more easy chemistry experiments.

8 Comments

  1. Hi thanks for this. We had fun noticing the lemons needed to be poked a lot! One point we would like to add is slicing the tip of the lemon off Would help it would sit better. Also, citric is spelled incorrectly.

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