How to Turn Milk into “Plastic”

It’s Not Magic, It’s Science!

What do you get when you mix Hiland Dairy Milk with vinegar? A mess? No! You get a “plastic”-making science experiment your kids will love (of course, true plastics are made from polymers, not milk and vinegar). So, let the fun begin.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 cup Hiland Dairy Milk
  • 4 tablespoons white distilled vinegar
  • Strainer
  • Paper towels
  • Food coloring (optional)

Homemade Plastic Materials


  • Pour milk into a microwavable dish and heat for 1 1/2 minutes, until hot.
    • Tip: Make sure you don’t boil the milk while heating.

Homemade Plastic Step 1

  • Stir in 4 tablespoons of vinegar.

Homemade Plastic Step 2

  • Continue stirring for approximately 1 minute.
    • Tip: You can teach your kid some science by letting them know that the mixture becomes clumpy as the acid in the vinegar starts to break down the protein in the milk.

Homemade Plastic Step 3

  • Pour the lumpy mixture into a strainer. Discard excess liquid.
    • Tip: Let as much liquid as possible drain into a separate bowl by pressing on the mixture.

Homemade Plastic Step 4

  • Place the mixture onto a paper towel and press out the remaining liquid.

Homemade Plastic Step 5

  • Add food coloring to the mixture and shape as desired.
    • Tip: Avoid stained fingers by wearing gloves when handling the food coloring!

Homemade Plastic Step 6

  • Let the final masterpiece dry completely (this will take about 2 days).

Homemade plastic made from milk and vinegar

Diva’s Tip

Although Hiland Dairy Milk and vinegar can turn into a hard, plastic-like substance your kiddos can experiment with, it is actually edible—and healthy for you—too! It’s called Paneer, which is an edible Indian cheese.

The Dairy Diva

~The Dairy Diva