pHun with Cabbage

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In this chemistry activity, learners will test the pH of various foods and household substances using cabbage. They will explore the concept of acidic and basic chemicals, learn that pH is a common measure of acidity, and explore various common uses of acids and bases.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$5 - $10 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 11

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity


Materials List (per group of students)

  • 1 head of red or purple cabbage
  • 1 gallon very warm water
  • Craft sticks
  • Kitchen chemicals to test, such as lemon juice, baking soda, window cleaner, clear soda pop, vinegar
  • Pipettes or droppers
  • Small cups


  • Physical Sciences
    • Chemistry
      • Acids and Bases

Informal Categories

  • Food and Cooking


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • see color
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Includes alignment to state and/or national standards:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



  • All rights reserved, COSI Columbus, 2009