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Portsmouth Regional Hospital

Oil in Your Candy?

candy experiments: oil test smallChewy candy often contains oil. The oil softens the candy and helps keep it from drying out. It can also make candy more glossy or less sticky.

In this experiment, you will heat and cool the candy, which will allow you to see and touch the oil. When food contains oil, it also contains fat. Starburst candy contains 5 grams of fat per package, according to the candy's nutrition information.

What you need:

  • 1 Starburst candy
  • Microwave (Get an adult to help — melted candy will be hot.)
  • Microwaveable plate

What to do:

  1. Remove the Starburst's paper wrapper. Place candy on a microwave-safe plate.
  2. Microwave the Starburst until it turns liquid and bubbly, about a minute. (Caution: Hot!)
  3. As the Starburst cools, look for shiny spots on top. This is the melted oil.
  4. When it's completely cool, the oil will harden into whitish spots (like wax). Scrape them off and rub them between your fingers to feel the oil.

© Loralee Leavitt. Used with permission.
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Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD

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