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Ice Cream Cone Puffy Paint

Puffy paint is a great take on using different textures and mediums for kids to explore. This easy and quick recipe can be used over and over again to create many masterpieces!

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This puffy paint adds depth to any painting!

This fun paint recipe can be made anytime and used in a variety of ways for painting! Once dry, children will love to feel the texture of the dried paint on their projects. You can find everything in your kitchen - flour, water, baking soda, food coloring and salt. Mix it all up and have your child explore painting in a 3D texture!

🎓 Create independence: This activity can be done alone or with minimal supervision for older kiddos. Have them practice reading the instructions, measure out their ingredients and use their imagination to paint!

🎨Artist at work: Part of the appeal of this activity is adding in the food coloring and watching the colors blend to create pretty pastels. If your child takes a real interest in mixing the colors, lean into it and explore how two colors can be blended together to create a new one!

🖌️ Explore paint brushes: Along with a new medium to paint with, explore different tools to paint with! Different sized brushes, different tools such as spoons, sticks, leaves, fingers...the possibilities are endless and will allow your little one to explore how different tools work in art!


For this activity you will need:

1 cup flour

1 cup water 

3 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

Food coloring

Bowl for mixing paint base

Small cups for different colors of paint

Black construction paper

Brown construction paper


Glue stick

Paintbrush (or other tools to paint!)

Brown marker

Microwave (optional)

Learning Outcomes






Focusing their observation on details


Step 1:

In a medium-sized bowl, mix your flour, baking soda and salt.

Step 2:

Slowly add in your cup of water, stirring as you go. The consistency you’re looking for is similar to pancake batter - don’t worry about the clumps, though! Add more water if needed.

Step 3:

Once mixed, divide your mixture into 3 small bowls and add 1-2 drops of food coloring into each bowl and stir.

Step 4: 

To make the ice cream cone base, cut a triangle out of your brown construction paper and glue it to your black construction paper. Next, take your brown maker to create criss-cross lines along it to make it look like a waffle cone.

Step 5:

We’re ready to paint! Dip your paintbrush into one color and paint a small ice cream shaped blob on top of the “cone”. Use a dabbing motion to create a 3D effect.

Step 6:

In between colors you can place your paper in the microwave for 10-15 seconds to speed up the drying process to add more scoops of ice cream!

Step 7:

Once you’ve added all of your ice cream layers, let it full dry overnight and in the morning you’ll have a tasty, puffy stack of ice cream scoops!

⬆️ For older preschoolers:  This can be a completely independent project by having them measure the ingredients and follow a recipe. Keep the learning and engagement going by exploring coloring mixing or dividing ratios with the puffy paint.

⬇️ For younger toddlers: They may need a bit more help. Have them practice hand-over-hand when measuring out the ingredients. Let them have full control when painting to build those fine motor muscles!

Playful Questions

What happens if we mix blue and yellow together?

How can we make a dark blue color? How about a light blue color?

What would happen if we added too much/not enough water to our paint base?

Can you count out the scoops for each ingredient?

What tools could we use to paint our project?

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