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Lions Learning Lab: Acid-Base Indicator

Science experiments you can try at home! Justin Huffman from Penn State Altoona’s Lions Learning Lab is showing us how to create an acid-base indicator using purple cabbage!

Purple Cabbage Acid/Base Indicator”

Demonstration Concept

This science demonstration teaches kids how to make an acid/base indicator from purple cabbage and use it to determine if a substance is acidic or basic!


1 head of purple cabbage


Clear plastic cups

Microwave safe container/ or pot

Microwave or stove



Coffee filter

Container to hold cabbage juice solution for storage

Various substances to test (examples: white vinegar, baking soda solution dissolved in water,milk, …etc.)


Special Note: This procedure should be done with an adult!!!

Chop up ¼ of a head of purple cabbage into small pieces.

Place the small pieces of purple cabbage into a microwave-safe container.

Add 3 cups of water to the container containing the cabbage.

Place the container into the microwave and heat for 5 minutes. (Note: If you wish to use the stove, place the chopped cabbage into a pot and add the 3 cups of water and bring to a boil.)

After heating in the microwave or on the stove, strain the solution through a strainer containing a coffee filter into a clean container for storage.

Allow the solution to cool down to room temperature before use.

Once cooled, your ready to test your cabbage juice indicator with various substances!!!

Note: The cabbage juice indicator can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week!

Visit Lions Learning Lab for more information.

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