This fall, take the classic vinegar/baking soda experiment for a spin inside a gourd by making your own pumpkin volcanoes!

Volcano Supplies

Here’s what you will need to make exploding gourd volcanoes:

  • Gourds or small pumpkins that can stand upright
  • Carving materials
  • Vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Dish soap
  • Food coloring
  • Baking sheet or tray

Have an adult cut the top of the gourd or pumpkin. Clear it out completely.


Next, fill the pumpkin about half full with vinegar. Add few drops of dish soap (for extra bubbles) and food coloring. Stir it all together until coloring is dissolved.


Place your gourds on the tray. Depending on how many little hands want to take part in the experiment, fill bowls with baking soda and hand out measuring spoons.

On the count of three, have your little scientists pour in about 2 tablespoons of baking soda into the pumpkins. The chemical reaction is always a crowd pleaser.


The pumpkins or gourds easily wash off for another round of color mixing and explosion fun!

What is the science behind gourd volcanoes? Mixing baking soda and vinegar together produces a reaction of carbon dioxide bubbles. The dish soap adds to the “wow” factor by making the solution foamy, as well as slowing down the chemical reaction. Gourd volcanoes are a scientific way to kick off fall with a bang!