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Science with Pop Rocks and Soda

Here is a fun and simple experiment that you might want to try!

·       Pop Rocks
·       Balloons
·       Funnel
·       Bottles of soda


1.  Pour an entire package of Pop Rocks into a balloon. You might be able to carefully pour the candies into the balloon’s mouth, but a funnel makes it much easier. Place the narrow end of the funnel into the mouth of the balloon and empty the Pop Rocks packet into the funnel.
2.  Place the balloon over the mouth of a bottle of soda. Be careful! You don’t want the Pop Rocks to drop into the soda before you’re ready.
3.  Are you ready? Grab the balloon and dump the Pop Rocks into the soda. Observe what happens as the liquid reacts with the candy.  The balloon should be inflating, even if the change is only very slight.


The secret behind the famous “popping” of Pop Rocks candy is pressurized carbon dioxide gas. Each of the tiny little candy pebbles contains a small amount of the gas. These tiny carbon dioxide bubbles make the popping sound you hear when they burst free from their candy shells.
Why does the balloon inflate? The carbon dioxide contained in the candy isn’t enough to cause even the small amount of inflation you observe in the experiment. That’s where the soda comes into play. The soda also contains pressurized carbon dioxide gas. When the Pop Rocks are dropped into the soda, some carbon dioxide is able to escape from the high fructose corn syrup of the soda and, because the carbon dioxide gas has no where to go in the bottle, it rises into the balloon.

You may also enjoy this great unit STEM Activities

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