Oozing Pumpkins

Using easy chemical reactions, you can make a gas to impress all your friends this Halloween! Let’s bring a pumpkin to life with this simple science.


  • A carved pumpkin
  • 2 small dishes
  • Dry ice (also known as solid carbon dioxide, available at Meijer)
  • Warm Water
  • Bubble Solution
  • Food Coloring
  • Citric Acid
  • Baking Soda

What to Do 

  1. In the small dish, place 50.0 grams of baking soda, and saturate it with 100 mL  of bubble solution. For even cooler effects, add food coloring.
  2. In a separate dish, combine 50.0 grams of citric acid and another 100 mL of bubble solution.
  3. Let the fun begin! Combine both dishes into a single dish inside the pumpkin and watch for the ooze!

More With Pumpkins 

  1. Place a small dish containing bubble solution in the inside of the pumpkin.
  2. Add a few pieces of dry ice to the dish
  3. Place the top back on the pumpkin, and observe the ooze!
  4. For cool effects, add food coloring.

Why does this work?

Dry ice is such a cool substance that when put into a liquid, it presents a fog or steam-like gas. This occurrence can be explained by exploring the properties of matter. Typically, a solid turns to a liquid by melting, and to a gas by evaporation. Some gases however, skip a stage and go from a solid to a gas. This phenomenon is known as sublimation. When placed into the bubble solution, the dry ice initiates bubbles from the solution along with giving it a fogged effect because sublimation is occurring.

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