You've Got Ingredients for a Chemical Volcano

11 Ways To Make a Chemical Volcano Erupt

There are several ways to model volcanic eruptions using simple chemical reactions. Here's a collection of some of the best chemical volcano recipes that you can use for a volcano demonstration or make just for fun.

Classic Baking Soda & Vinegar Volcano

This chemical volcano erupts when baking soda and vinegar are reacted to produce carbon dioxide bubbly "lava".
Steve Goodwin / Getty Images

Chances are if you have made a model volcano, this was how you did it. The baking soda and vinegar reaction is nice because it's non-toxic and you can recharge your volcano to make it erupt again and again and again.

Yeast & Peroxide Volcano

Volcano erupting
Jeffrey Coolidge/Getty Images

The yeast and peroxide volcano is another safe choice for kids using common household ingredients. This volcano is a little foamier than the baking soda and vinegar variety. You can recharge this volcano, too.

Pro tip: Add a bit of dry ice to the volcano to make it smoke.

Mentos & Soda Eruption

A 2-litre bottle of Diet Coke just after Mentos were dropped into it

Michael Murphy/Wikimedia Commons

This fountain or volcanic eruption can be done with other candies and any type of carbonated beverage. If you use a diet soda or an unsweetened drink the resulting spray will be a lot less sticky.

Glowing Eruption

This volcano glows blue under a black light. That doesn't make it any more like a volcano than the other projects, except that lava is hot and glows. Glowing eruptions are cool.

Fountain Firework

Epic Fireworks
Multi Coloured Firework Fountain/Flickr/Attribution 2.0 Generic

This particular volcano erupts with smoke and fire, not lava. If you add iron or aluminum filings to the mixture, you can shoot a shower of sparks.

Ketchup & Baking Soda Volcano

Ketchup contains vinegar, which reacts with baking soda to produce an extra-special lava for a chemical volcano. Kinzie+Riehm / Getty Images

The acetic acid in ketchup reacts with baking soda to produce an extra-special type of lava for a chemical volcano. This is a non-toxic volcano recipe that is sure to please.

Lemon Fizz Volcano

Baking soda and the citric acid in lemon juice react to produce carbon dioxide gas, which can be used to form bubbles.
bonnie jacobs / Getty Images

We colored this eruption blue, but you could just as easily make it red or orange. When you stop to think about it, you can react any acidic liquid with baking soda to create lava.

Vesuvian Fire

Ammonium dichromate

Ben Mills/Wikimedia Commons

'Vesuvian Fire' is one name given to the classic tabletop chemical volcano made using ammonium dichromate. This is a spectacular demonstration, but chromium is toxic so this reaction is only carried out in the chemistry lab.

Color Change Chemical Volcano

A chemical volcano is a fun way to demonstrate science concepts.
Marilyn Nieves/Getty Images

This chemical volcano involves a color change of the 'lava' from purple to orange and back to purple. The volcano can be used to illustrate an acid-base reaction and the use of an acid-base indicator.

Pop Rocks Chemical Volcano

Pop Rocks

Catherine Bulinkski/

You don't have baking soda or vinegar to make a homemade chemical volcano? Here's a simple 2-ingredient volcano using Pop Rocks candies to produce the eruption. If you use red or pink pop rocks, you'll even get a nice color to the lava.

Sulfuric Acid & Sugar Ash Column

A sugar cube is a good chemical fuel for a volcano.
Andy Crawford and Tim Ridley / Getty Images

If you add a bit of sulfuric acid to sugar you'll create a glowing column of hot black ash.

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Your Citation
Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "You've Got Ingredients for a Chemical Volcano." ThoughtCo, Apr. 5, 2023, Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. (2023, April 5). You've Got Ingredients for a Chemical Volcano. Retrieved from Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "You've Got Ingredients for a Chemical Volcano." ThoughtCo. (accessed May 29, 2023).