Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Rainbow Rice

Rainbow Rice

One of the many fun, and educational, DIY projects that's floating around is home made rainbow rice! I love this stuff! It is great to put in a sensory bin or table for your toddler or preschooler. It would also be great to use for home decor. I can imagine making some red and green rice to fill a decorative apothecary jar or vase around Christmas time. I could also see using rainbow rice as the bottom support for flower arrangements. No matter what reason you have to make it, I am SURE you will come up with a hundred more! It is simple to make out of common household items. Here are the supplies you need:

rice (2 cups per color)
vinegar or rubbing alcohol (1-2tbs per color)
food coloring (amount varies)
glass jars with lids, or another seal-able container that you don't mind staining
aluminum foil
cookie sheet
conventional oven


Preheat your oven to 175 degrees Fahrenheit.

Line a cookie sheet with aluminum fold, making sure that you let a little bit hang over on at least two sides. (This will give you something to grab a hold of later. Don't skip this step or you will have a heck of a time pouring the rice off of the cookie sheet later.) Place the cookie sheet aside.

Put approximately 1-2 tbs of rubbing alcohol or vinegar into a glass jar. Add your desired color and how much food coloring that you find you need. (You may have to experiment a little bit here. Obviously, you will need more food coloring for more saturated colors.) Then add two cups of rice to the jar. Cover or close TIGHTLY, then shake to mix. (You can imagine why the tightly part is important....not a pleasant thing to clean up...)

Once mixed, pour the rice onto the aluminum foiled lined cookie sheet. If you plan on making more colors and mixing them, you can continue to add rice to the cookie sheet. Otherwise, you may want to make each color separately, or on a separate cookie sheet. Be sure that your layer of rice is not too thick. A tick layer will take longer to dry out in the oven.

Place in the oven for approximately 20 min. Check the rice, and bake another 10-15 min if it is still wet. (When I made my rice, I made the layer of rice WAY TO THICK. I ended up having to bake mine much longer than this.) Continue baking and checking the rice as necessary.

Removed the rice from the oven, and let cool. The great thing about this recipe is that the color will not bleed even if the rice gets wet. Unfortunately, my little one has put this in her mouth on more than one occasion and has even managed to drool into it with no ill effects.

Now go have some fun with your rainbow rice!

Side note: I used vinegar with my rice and to this day the rice smells a little bit like vinegar. If your not fond of that smell in particular, I would suggest using rubbing alcohol. I also hear that people have success with just letting it air dry. I was worried about knocking it over accidentally and ending up with a HUGE mess so, I didn't try it.

Rainbow Rice

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