June 28, 2012

Edible Sensory Paint

Recipe for Homemade Finger Paint



All four of my boys love painting, and we love to explore with different types of paint.  We especially love making our own paint.  What is safer than homemade paint?  I am more comfortable knowing exactly is in the paint when let my babies paint.  We first tried this recipe when Tank and Peanut were 11 months.


Last summer when my husband I and purchased a Vitamix at the County Fair I was near the end of my pregnancy with the twins, so as you can imagine, I was huge and uncomfortable.  I sat on our couch and read the recipe book that came with the little appliance from cover to cover.  And again.  And then again.  I didn't have much else to do since I couldn't be on my feet, so I spent my time compiling a list of must try recipes.


One section of the book is dedicated to children.  I eagerly thumbed through the ideas and filed some of them in my mind for future use.  (Future meaning once I could actually stand on two feet for more than two minutes without my back aching.)  The other day I remembered the recipe for finger paint, and I decided it was time to try it out with my littlest guys.  


Ingredients:
I added everything but the food coloring to the Vitamix and blended it together on high for about six and a half minutes.


If you don't have a Vitamix or comparable appliance you can whisk together all ingredients on the stove over medium heat until thickened.


Once thickened, separate into smaller portions depending on how many colors you'd like to make.


Add color and mix well.


Store in jars until ready to use.
Please note they will be hot for some time, so make a bit in advance.  I prepared this batch during nap time, so it was ready to go when the little guys woke up.


I took it outside and put a ball of each color on a cookie sheet.  I put the cookie sheets on a shower curtain I bought at Dollar Tree that I use for messy play.  (The label says do not put in a washing machine, but I throw them in with towels all the time to clean after play.)

My little Peanut barely touched one part of it, scrunched up his face and didn't reach for it again.  Instead he sat on my lap while I photographed his brother.


Tank, on the other hand, loved it!


JZ (5) was giddy at the thought of his brothers having some messy fun of their own.  He helped me make the paint, and he stayed close by the entire time Tank played.



Of course it went directly into the mouth.  This kid eats everything.  I know most babies do, but really, Tank eats everything


He smeared it a little on the shower curtain, but was mostly just interested in taste testing.  He comes by his nickname honestly.




To see the results for myself, I combined bits of the colored balls together and smeared them.  At this age it's more about the sensory experience than about painting.  It turned out to be a gooey but not sticky substance.  It washed off in seconds and was, in my opinion, a quick and easy way to let little ones get messy and stimulate their senses.


I'm more than a bit addicted to my Vitamix.  It is hands down the best purchase my husband and I have made.  

*Update*
I have used this recipe many times since this original post, and I wanted to share some more details.  I have learned that I need to use the paint shortly after making it to get the right consistency.  Allow it to cool completely then use right away for the best results.  Most days when I make paint I cover our toddler table with butcher paper and let the boys paint freely.


If it sits for a few hours it starts to thicken.  This is fun for children of all ages.  It's an ooey gooey colorful sensory experience.


Peanut didn't want anything to do with the edible sensory paint the first time we made it, but now it is one of his favorite materials!  In the photo below he is 16 months.


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32 comments:

  1. So awesome! I agree, everything goes in the mouth until they are like 3! Can't wait to try it.

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  2. This is such a sweet activity for kids. It looks like your little one enjoyed it!

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  3. I've not heard of a vitamix before but the edible paint sounds a great idea. Thanks for sharing.

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  4. That looks great, and the vitamix sounds good too.

    Thanks for linking up. x

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  5. What a great idea for painting with babies! I remember when my kids were little, you just had to keep putting their hands on the paper and then wash them quickly before the paint got in their mouths. This is wonderful!

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  6. What fun for painting with babies!! Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!!

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  7. Looks like fun and what a great idea using a shower curtain for easy clean up. I always buy plastic table cloths and throw them away...I like the idea of washing and using the shower curtain much better. Thanks for sharing on Hey Mom, Look What I Did at Adventures In Mommy Land!!

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  8. Brilliant - I'm so happy that it's not just me that has a baby that eats everything - when we did it T munched her way through the red and yellow - she didn't touch the blue though!!!

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  9. I know this post is a bit old, but my mother-in-law and I did an edible finger painting activity with my babies and we used instant pudding. It was FANTASTIC. The boys loved it, and we weren't worried a bit about them eating it. I'd love to try this out too!

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    1. We love pudding painting! Yogurt too. I hope you enjoy this. :)

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  10. I always buy plastic table cloths and throw them away...I like the idea of washing and using the shower curtain much better. That looks great, and the vitamix sounds good too.This is such a sweet activity for kids. It looks like your little one enjoyed it!

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  11. Really great recipe! Thanks for sharing it. Will pin it.

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  12. Sounds really great. We will have to try it. I often do not have paint and my kids will want to paint, so this is a good recipe to have in my arsenal.

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  13. This was a great activity for my 13 month old... he played for 15 whole minutes! It was also so easy to clean up. I will definitely be doing this once a week.

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    1. Thank you for sharing! I'm so glad your little one loved it. :)

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  14. We are definitely trying this here this Spring!

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  15. Love this idea - must give it a try.

    I would love for you to link up at the Empty Your Archive party which has fun painting ideas as one of it's themes this week - Alice @ Mums Make Lists x

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  16. I save plastic table cloths from parties and use them when we paint,then throw them away. Then I don't feel like I'm wasting them since they would have been thrown out after the party.

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  17. will the paint dry nicely on paper?? or is it just to play and clean up?

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  18. Hi,

    I know this is super old. We did today and it was GREAT. I did just want to ask if the sugar is necessary for the chemistry of the paint? It does make it taste awesome... and while it's great that my little guy CAN eat the paint, I would still rather he didn't. :-)

    Katharine

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    1. I think it is worth trying without the sugar. I have always used sugar, so I'm not certain. I know that cornstarch will thicken up with just water, so it seems like it could work without. (And I so totally agree with you about preferring that he doesn't eat it, LOL.)

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  19. I just did this with the kids in my home daycare and they loved it!! Thanks so much!

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  20. Love this! Just wondering: why does the bottom of each photo say "Train Up A Child" since I don't see that anywhere else?

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    1. When I first started my blog I named it Train Up a Child after the Bible verse Proverbs 22:6. I changed my name after receiving messages asking if I was affiliated with the authors of the book by the same name. I am not affiliated with them in any way, nor do I support their discipline methods. I watermark my photos, so all of my old photos have my old name on them.

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    2. Can I store without it getting old and thick?

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    3. For a couple days yes you can store it. You might need to blend it or whisk it up again when you're ready to use it.

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    4. Does it need to be refrigerated or can it sit on the counter?

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  21. I encourage parents to read up on the dangers of artificial food dyes before letting your babies eat it. http://www.100daysofrealfood.com/2012/03/13/real-food-tips-7-reasons-i-hate-artificial-food-dyes/

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  22. I was whisking and whisking and whisking at the stove, starting to get a bit out of sorts that this crummy paint recipe wasn't going to work and I wasted my time and cornstarch when VOILA! All of a sudden it thickened up beautifully. Took about eight minutes over medium heat. Can't wait for the babies to wake up and get messy!! Thanks!!

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  23. I tried this recipe last night and it didn't thicken at all. I thought that maybe it didn't have enough time to mix so I tried to make a new batch this morning, it mixed for 20-30 minutes and never thickened. I added a bit more cornstarch, mixed it again, even let it sit for a while and still it's just a runny watery mix. Can anyone tell me why it isn't coming out right?? :c

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  24. I tried in my vitamix for ~8 minutes and it didn't work! Super bummed... I even had the same cornstarch as pictured! Bizarre

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