Hollandaise Sauce: Emulsion at Work

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In this activity, learners follow a recipe to make hollandaise sauce. Learners discover how cooks use egg yolks to blend oil and water together into a smooth mix. In chemistry, this mixture is known as an emulsion. Substances like egg yolks that assist with emulsification are called emulsifiers.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 6 - 14

Resource Type:


Materials List (per group of students)

  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • a pinch of white pepper
  • 1 1/2 to 2 sticks (6-8 ounces) melted butter
  • a wire whisk
  • a medium-weight stainless steel, enameled or glass saucepan, or a double boiler


  • Physical Sciences
    • Chemistry
      • Chemical Bonding
    • States of Matter
      • Liquids
      • Changes of Phase
    • Structure and Properties of Matter
      • Atomic Structure
      • Elements and Periodic Table
      • Elementary Particles and Nuclear Physics
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations

Informal Categories

  • Food and Cooking


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



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