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Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph.D.

How to Flavor Rock Candy

By March 4, 2014

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Rock Candy (Anne Helmenstine)I've been trying out kits for educational toys, like slime and the chemical volcano, but one kit I just can't bring myself to buy-and-try is the rock candy kit. Why? It's around $12 and doesn't even come with the sugar... just a stick, container, and flavored food coloring. I can come up with my own jar and popsicle stick to make my own rock candy and I suspect you can too. If you want flavoring, there are couple of ways to go. You can add a few drops of flavoring to your saturated sugar solution. These are extracts or flavorings that you would buy in the spice section of a grocery store. You use these by adding food coloring and a couple of drops of flavoring to your crystal solution. Cherry, lemon, lime, orange, mint, and cinnamon all work well. Another option is to dissolve Kool-aid™ or other drink mix in the crystal growing solution to (intensely) flavor your rock candy.

If you have experience with the rock candy kit and think it's worth the money, let me know and I'll try it out, but I suspect you can save your pennies and get equally good or better results on your own.

Rock Candy Video | Troubleshoot Problems Growing Rock Candy


September 29, 2009 at 11:27 am
(1) kiari says:

I think you’re right, I’m doing my science fair project on rock candy crystallization and I don’t think I need to spend that much on such an empty kit. Thank you for posting this before I could make a mistake like that. I hope you post more ways to flavor them, I love rock candy and would like some snacks for after I’m done with my experiment! :D

November 22, 2009 at 6:08 pm
(2) Doris Luciene says:

I am on my third batch with a week plus into each batch , of just trying to grow the rock candy , but to no avail . I too thought of kool-aid method for flavoring , am and wondering if that is why it will not grow . I do live in a very hot state , which is why I have allowed over a week for growth . This is frustrating me , as I have been a food professional for over 20 yrs . How hard can it be to work with simple syrup . If you have any advice I can use please help !!!!! This is a science project due in a little over a week now . (3 weeks wasted already with no reward . )

May 5, 2011 at 11:43 am
(3) chloe says:

ME and my freinds are doing a science project and we want to know if we can do it with other types of sugars

December 12, 2009 at 11:21 am
(4) amze says:

The trick to forming sugar crystals quickly is to really saturate your solution. I use 3parts water to 1part sugar. also, it helps to boil the water and sugar. this produces really fast crystals. I made my solution yesterday and already have a whole lot of crystals.
ps. if sombody could tell me what to do about the layer of crystals forming on top of the solution it’d be great. i want to look at my crystals (i used dark colored flavoring) but am afraid to break that layer. what should I do?

December 12, 2009 at 1:28 pm
(5) Anne says:

amze, I think you meant to say you used 3 cups sugar and 1 cup water, not the other way around.

You need to break the crystal layer on the top and remove it. If your solution is very dark, you still won’t be able to see the sugar crystals, but removing the layer will help your crystals to grow because it will prevent crystals from adding to the layer and because the layer inhibits evaporation.

January 16, 2010 at 5:31 pm
(6) maddie says:

i love rock candy epesially if it is in a pan for flavoring i just use food coloring it works great!
and on top i put powdered sugar.its really good try it!

plus, amze its three cups of sugar and one(cup) of water.

September 2, 2010 at 5:02 pm
(7) GirL says:

The candy with powdered sugar is hard candy and it doesn’t take a week to make; the rock candy is so good. I am going to try a dk. flavoring, so I hope that it works well!

October 27, 2010 at 12:25 pm
(8) Potter Beth says:

We used to make rock candy on cotton string, too. I always like doing it with string, because the final shape could be really wild. :)

February 11, 2011 at 9:15 am
(9) Maid of honour says:

i want to make a buch of these on sticks…do i just use a popsickle stick instead of string or do i try to transfer it off the string onto the stick? HELP please!

May 5, 2011 at 11:46 am
(10) crazychick says:

me and my freinds were wondering if can you make it with differnt sugars like powdered and brown sugar and regular and we were going to see if it would taste better do you think we could do that plz reply back.

May 16, 2011 at 9:03 pm
(11) bryan says:

string is cool looking, but a pain
I use paperclip across top with verical skewer, or chp stick

May 16, 2011 at 9:05 pm
(12) bryan says:

make that clothes clip, not paper

March 26, 2012 at 1:33 pm
(13) $exyMe says:

I bought the kit and my chef used it to make rock candy for my science project…It was taking to long to actually make it so I just bought the rock candy already made….it’s not cheating it’s just a simpler way…

March 9, 2014 at 12:41 am
(14) Anaya says:

Thank you so much! Super helpful!

March 23, 2014 at 2:06 pm
(15) Bob says:

do u need food flavoring

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