How to Make a Thick Gelatin for a Children's Science Project

Written by louise harding
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Gelatin, in its pre-granulated state, was developed in 1890 by Charles Knox. Unflavored gelatin can be used in everything from homemade gel candles to food products. School science projects often make sure of unflavored gelatin as well. By decreasing the amount of water used, you can increase the firmness of the gelatin. Use two cups of boiling water for standard dessert firmness in your gelatin. Unflavored gelatin sets up clear, so you can add any food colouring desired for colour.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • 1 envelope unflavored gelatin (equals 1 tablespoon of powder)
  • Boiling water (up to 2 cups depending on firmness of gelatin desired)
  • Bowl or container
  • Glass measuring cup
  • Stirring spoon
  • Scissors
  • Refrigerator
  • Food colouring (optional)

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  1. 1

    Cut open the top of the gelatin envelope and pour one package of unflavored gelatin powder into a bowl. One envelope of unflavored gelatin powder traditionally equals approximately one tablespoon and will gel 473ml or two cups of liquid. Use more than one envelope if more than two cups of gelatin is needed.

  2. 2

    Pour two cups of boiling water into the bowl, stirring until the powder is dissolved.

  3. 3

    Chill the container with the gelatin liquid in the refrigerator until firm or until the gelatin reaches the consistency desired. Unflavored gelatin is odourless, colourless and flavourless and forms a jelly when dissolved in hot water and refrigerated until thoroughly chilled.

Tips and warnings

  • Food colouring can be added to colour the gelatin for whatever school project is being created. Items can be added to the gelatin prior to chilling, but chilling time must be increased to reach firmness. Chill the gelatin until almost firm and then add the items. If the gelatin is still in liquid form and you add items, they will sink to the bottom. Chop up the gelatin with a spoon if a flat, firm state is not desired for your project.
  • Gelatin will melt over time if not refrigerated. If a softer gelatin is desired for a project, leave at room temperature until gelatin softens. Do not boil the water with the gelatin in it. Boiling the gelatin will cause lumps to form. Boil the water and then add the water to the gelatin for a smooth consistency.

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