From the Kitchen

Painting Toast

This is a really fun project I learned from one of my college Elementary Education classes. It also makes for a great snack too. Painted Toast!



  • Bread – this works best if you have white bread, the colors show up brighter.
  • Bowls and Brushes – you need a bowl and brush for each color. I just used my basting brushes I have, but it would be more fun with smaller painting brushes, cleaned or unused.
  • Food Coloring – we used all 4 colors and you could mix them too.
  • Milk – whatever kind you have. You don’t need a lot of milk, I had too much in each bowl.
  • Toaster Oven or Broiler – I have a great toaster oven, but you could easily toast these in the oven.

Fill your bowls with milk and add 2-3 drops of food coloring. Then let the kids paint their toast. (I did explain to my kids that this is milk and safe to drink, that it is not real paint. I can just see my sweet little girl trying to eat real paint the next time I get it out!)


Try not to let the kids paint too much in one spot, it can get soggy. Matt was trying to mix red and blue to make purple. Then once their designs are done, set them in the toaster. The painted spot won’t be as crispy as the edges, but still yummy.


Then let the kiddies eat their Painted Toast. You could add butter, but we didn’t need too. The colors were fun enough to eat alone.



  1. Loved this! I have been teaching my 5, 4 and 2 year olds about Leonardo da Vinci this month…and as they are tiny we are talking about really simple things. I read a little thing about his work making his own paints and how he loved to experiment with many different things in the process. So today we made paint out of egg yolk in the morning, then sidewalk paint out of cornstarch and water in the afternoon…and at the end of the day finished things up with some painted toast! They thought it was great fun so thanks for sharing!

  2. kimig – Your child sounds like mine. When he was a youngster I could count on one hand the amount of different foods he would eat. He also had a horrible gag reflex, being sensitive to food textures. I remember I cried one time just because he finally ate something different – McDonald’s fries, which is another evil food I know. But when you have a kid who won’t eat, you gotta get something in their stomachs. He was finally diagnosed with Sensory Integrative Disorder, which explained a lot of things besides the eating issue.
    As for this bread painting idea, just for the record, I do not typically buy white bread, but I need to try this idea for the kids in my bible class. They will love it.

  3. well, in accordance to some of these posts, I must be a HORRIBLE mother……my kids eat white bread, they eat food coloring on and in things, as did I when I was a kid and I am fine :) If I tried to conform to what the standards of the PROPER, healthy way a kid should eat, my kids would starve. I have a 5 yr old that refuses to eat so many healthy foods, not becasue I havn’t tried, believe me, we have done EVERYTHING, but he eats and he is far from obese. He has a gag reflex when ever we try to get him to eat anything he doesn’t like/want to try. rather have him keep food in than vomit everywhere. As a parent, you choose your battles, I am happy he eats. He is 5 BTW and as a toddler and baby, he would eat EVERYTHING. So, just my 2 cents.

  4. I am an Early Childhood Education major in college right now. I used this activity with the kids for my nutrition class and it was a hit. The kids had so much fun while practicing fine motor skills and learning about science through experinmenting with color mixing. At first I also thought ‘How can this be a healthy snack for kids?’, but it really was more of an art project. Most kids only ate about a half slice of bread, and we put different kinds of kelly on top at the end. You can use other breads if you’re concerned about using white bread. The children really had a blast with this one and now everytime I go to the classroom they ask if we are making rainbow toast again. I suggest this for any preschool teacher.

  5. Food colouring toxic? I am pretty sure the FDA would have said something by now. Yes certain people can be allergic – or have a sensitivity (my sister couldn’t eat blue gummy whales when we were little) but come on. A person could have an allergy to just about anything (a friend is allergic to curry spices) does that mean you should never let a child eat anything?! And toast leading to obesity?!?! I am pretty sure my toddler doesn’t need to look like Kate Moss. Toast for breakfast occassionally isn’t going to hurt them. People really need to start thinking a bit more rationally or we shall be raising generations of paranoids. Everything in moderation. I am pretty sure there were lots more “dangerous things” when I was growing up (kool-aid ahaha) and I survived.

  6. ok – so this comment is much later than the others, but maybe someone will read it! We used to do this and called it Monster Toast! My kids (ages 11 & 14) were reminiscing about this the other day! The taste is not bad, we would occassionally sprinke cinnamon sugar lightly over it as a treat.

  7. I have this activity on my blog as well – the kids and grown ups find it to be fun.
    Yes, white bread and food color are not the best options but I used hearty country white without high fructose corn syrup
    and if moms are really that worried about food coloring you can purchase natural food dye from India Tree or similar merchant.

    As a teacher and mother of 4 very healthy kids — it is a fun creative activity that makes memories!

    my blog

  8. I think this looks very cute. I was thinking perhaps you could make a french toast sort of batter, then put the coloring in, and make a french toast so its not as soggy? But then it might get too brown from cooking it in a pan like that… Oh well, I’ll just have to try both ways. Thanks for the idea =)

  9. Kate – I’m also a former preschool teacher and mother of 3 and find no harm in this Painting Toast activity. It’s meant to be a fun science/art activity with my children. I see nothing wrong in having a little fun that is out of the ordinary. Thanks for your opinion and I agree with you that it’s about the experience, but read the rest of my blog and you’ll see I do all kinds of worthwhile activities with my kids.

    Carole & Daycareworker – Thanks!

  10. Personally i think this is a wonderful idea!
    I do not see how eating white bread, milk, and a teensy bit of food coloring will hurt you.
    It’s not like a someone will do this for their kids EVERY single day. I work at a daycare and we’re always looking for fun and creative things to do with the children and this is brilliant! Not only do they get to “paint”, they get a tiny snack out of it too.

    To the person who said “junky gadget food”…….it’s bread and milk? Come on.

    Thanks so much for sharing with those of us who appreciate it!
    I’ll introduce the idea to my fellow co-workers tomorrow!

  11. Get a grip people. The kids aren’t going to eat it every single day. Loosen up and have some fun…………..stop thinking too much.

    I love it.

  12. You have to be joking about this! Kids eat enough junky gadget food without adding to it! Why on earth do people think this is a fun thing to do?

    If you are going to do food preparation with children then try some worthwhile activities – like cutting up bananas and adding them to plain yoghurt and stirring in honey. Kids will get a thrill out of normal food – it is the involvement with the adult and the adult activity that is what makes it attractive.

    How does white bread taste better with coloured milk painted on it?

  13. Knows Better – Thanks for your input. But with only a couple drops of food coloring in all that milk and hardly any of the milk mixture really getting on the toast, I feel just fine about giving this to my kids. And this activity works just as good on wheat bread as well, but I don’t mind giving them white bread once in a while.

  14. White bread is a simple starch, akin to eating white sugar. (obesity crisis,m anyone?) Food colorings are linked to toxicity in children, everything from allergic reactions to full blown allergies. this looks like fun to play with, but no way would I allow a child to eat it.

    Nancy, MD–pediatrics

  15. My mom and I used to do this, except she called it “monster toast.” You had to try to paint a scary face on your bread, and it was always fun to smear apple butter over then once the bread was toasted!

  16. So Fun! I think I’ll paint a message on toast for my daughter’s Bday tomorrow!
    I’ve seen it done with eggyolk and no coloring and then when you toast it the message or picture magically appears! I haven’t tried it though.
    Love it!

  17. Marie, this is Ashley Stoker and I found your site on a link from Sarah’s. Your family is adorable and your ideas are great. Thanks for taking the time to share with us all!!!

  18. Oh we are definately going to do this! My kids are going to LOVE this. Although I’m afraid if I do they may never want regular toast again. Hmm…

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