Pop Tarts from Scratch

I don’t know if you like pop tarts or not but they have a large student following. Personally I think the crust tastes like cardboard but I guess kids don’t notice. Why not learn how to make kid’s favorite snack from scratch and turn it into an experiment?

Time Frame: 2 Blocks (One day for explanation, finding recipe, measuring ingredients; Second day to make, bake & evaluate)

Objective: The goal of this lesson is to create a “from scratch” pop tart that is better than the ones on the store shelf.

Set

  • Line your counter with boxes of different kinds of Pop-Tarts.
  • Explain the challenge of the day: create the best “from scratch” pop tart that tastes and looks better then the ones on the shelf.

Materials

  • 1 store bought pop tart (the kind you are trying to replicate)
  • Filling Ingredients (Strawberry jam, cinnamon, fluff, chocolate chips, etc)
  •  


Instructions

  • There are a lot of recipes for home-made Pop-Tarts on the internet. It doesn’t mean that any of them are perfect though. Have students mix and match, look at multiple recipes, and use their knowledge of the function of ingredients in baked products to come up with their best crust and filling recipes.

Activities

  • Students research & chose a recipe
  • Students will make their Pop-Tarts
  • Students will evaluate their finished products

Evaluation

  • Cut the store bought pop tart in half. Cut the homemade pop tart in half and line them up side by side.
    • What do you observe?
    • Is there a height difference?
    • Which crust is thicker?
    • Which filling is thicker?
    • Which pop tart has more frosting?
    • Which one tastes better?

Attachments

Extensions

  • Take a store bought pop tart and put it in a glass jar with a lid.
    • Take one of your homemade pop tarts and put it in a separate glass jar with a lid.
    • See how long it takes for them each to start to decompose. Have your class make predictions.
  • Another really silly thing to do is make a gourmet plated dessert using Pop-Tarts. Check out some of the ideas here.

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Closure

  • Why do you think that store bought pop tarts are the way they are if we can make a better product? (shelf life, manufacturing)
  • What challenges did we face?
  • What are some solutions that we came up with to solve those challenges?
  • At the end of the day would you rather have a homemade pop tart or store bought pop tart?

Websites

Pictures

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported.

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