Rockin' Rock Candy

Rockin' Rock Candy

This old-fashioned rock candy recipe is not only a sweet treat, but a fun, earth-friendly science activity to share with the kids.


2 or more candy sticks



  • 32 oz. clean glass jar(s)
  • wooden skewers or cotton string
  • wooden popsicle sticks or pencil


  • 4 cups Domino® Granulated Sugar plus additional for coating skewers
  • 2 cups water
  • red and blue food coloring (optional)



Prepare your materials before you begin cooking the sugar solution. Be sure the glass jar is thoroughly clean.

If using string, cut 2 or 3 pieces into approximately 6-inch lengths; tie one end to a pencil. Lay the pencil across the mouth of the jar and check that the strings dangle into the jar without touching each other or the bottom of the jar.

Use wooden skewers to create rock candy lollipops. To suspend the skewers in the middle of the jar, you will need to tie them to a popsicle stick (twist ties work best). As with the string, be sure that the skewers do not touch each other or the bottom of the jar. Set aside your string or skewers on a clean surface.


In a medium saucepan, bring the water to a gentle boil. Add 1 cup of sugar at a time, stirring with a wooden spoon after each addition, until the sugar is completely dissolved. Gradually add a few drops of the food coloring, stirring continuously until the coloring is mixed in and all the sugar is dissolved.

Let the solution sit off the heat for 5 minutes.

While the solution is cooling, moisten the strings or skewers in water and roll in granulated sugar so they are lightly covered. This will give the sugar crystals a head start to begin forming. Pour the solution into the glass jar. (Warning: It may still be very hot!) Lower the strings or skewers into the jar so that they are sitting in the solution.

Loosely cover the top of the jar with foil or a paper towel to prevent dust from getting in. Do not seal tightly, since there needs to be ventilation to allow for water to evaporate. Set jar aside where it can sit undisturbed.

In a few hours, you should see crystals forming; this will continue for several days. The longer you allow the crystals to form, the bigger they will be!


The sugar crystals will grow over time, but it will take patience, since it can take up to a week for some of the biggest crystals to form. 

If you want to make several different colored pieces of rock candy, use several jars and skewers, and double or triple the sugar solution as necessary.