Pasta Art Activities for Kids
Collage Kids Arts and Crafts Activities

Pasta Art Activities for Kids

Pasta Art Activities for Kids

We’ve dyed pasta a few times now and used it to make pasta necklaces, pipecleaner caterpillars, and pasta collages, so when the Rockin’ Art Moms issued a macaroni challenge,* I was all over it. I was familiar with using pasta for kids arts and crafts but also excited to branch out and try something new.

We ended up doing two new pasta art activities for kids, both hits.

First, though, we dyed our pasta which is super simple.

How to Dye Pasta for Arts and Crafts

How to Dye Pasta

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  • Dried pasta, various shapes and sizes as desired
  • Plastic ziploc-type bags
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Food coloring (liquid not gel) or liquid watercolor paint


1. Place your pasta shapes in the plastic bag, one bag per color.

2. Add a tablespoon or so of rubbing alcohol, close the top, and massage the bag to distribute the alcohol.

3. Open the bag, add your food coloring or liquid watercolor paint, close the bag again and massage to distribute the color.

4. Spread the pasta out on cookie sheets or a wax paper-lined surface to dry.

Colored Pasta for Kids Arts and Crafts

Now you’re ready to use the colored pasta for kids art activities!

Now that you have your pasta dyed, here’s a video showing Pasta Arts and Crafts in action! And don’t forget to scroll down to get the step-by-step instructions.

Pasta Sculptures for Kids

Pasta Art Activity #1 – Pasta Sculptures

We started with this pasta sculpture idea and returned to it several times over the past week. The kids especially liked working on these during our read-aloud time.


Pasta Sculptures and Art Activities for Kids


Use the air dry clay as the base of your sculpture and poke pipe cleaners and/or dowels in the clay. String with pasta beads. Add additional pipe cleaners and pasta as desired until the sculpture is complete.

Pasta and Clay Sculptures

You can also press colored pasta into the sculpture base or into air dry clay on it’s own.

The kids each made and decorated doughnuts this way.

Little Pasta People

And little pasta people.

And you can, of course, use the pasta shapes with just pipe cleaners, threading them on for bracelets, sculptures, spirals, or even letters.

Mandalas and Other Pasta Art Activities for Kids

Pasta Art Activity #2 – Pasta Mandala Collage

We made these when Maia had a friend over and everyone loved them!


  • Colored pasta shapes
  • Sturdy paper plates
  • Glue
Mandalas and Pasta Art Activities for Kids


Glue the colored pasta shapes on the paper plate in a radiating mandala design.

A Pasta Portrait

You can also make a face collage, as Maia did, or any other pasta design you like.

Want more pasta art ideas?

14 Pasta Art Activities for Kids

Now that you’re excited about the potential of pasta, check out some of these other arts and crafts projects you can make with it!

14 More pasta art activities for kids

Kids Activity Books by the Rockin' Art Moms

Everyone who joins us in the Macaroni Challenge will be entered in an amazing Rockin’ Art Moms Gift Basket giveaway. The winner will be selected at random from the entries and announced on Instagram and the Rockin’ Art for Kids Facebook page on Sunday May 10th, 2015.

Update: Challenge and giveaway now over

Prize basket giveaway will include 6 books from the Rockin’ Art Moms:

The Artful Parent and The Artful Year from The Artful Parent // Playful from Mer Mag // Tinkerlab from Tinkerlab //150 Screen Free Activities for Kids from Fun at Home with Kids // Happy Handmade (ebook) from MollyMoo

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Fun pasta art activities for kids (sculptures, clay, mandalas) plus instructions for coloring your own pasta shapes to use in kids crafts. #kidsart #kidsactivities
Pasta Art Activities for Kids


  • Reply
    Michelle McInerney | MollyMooCrafts
    April 27, 2015 at 4:07 pm

    Of those pasta people are just killing me with their cuteness. LOVE LOVE xx

    • Reply
      Jean Van't Hul
      April 27, 2015 at 4:55 pm

      Ha! Thanks, Michelle! They had fun with those! One of them even has wings. :)

  • Reply
    April 28, 2015 at 11:39 am

    Looking through all of you pasta suggestions made me realize that I need to do this with my art class!! we have TONS of pasta left over. We are totally making mandalas. Thank you for these suggestions!! Your blog is always so full of awesome ideas!! xo bar

    • Reply
      Jean Van't Hul
      April 28, 2015 at 1:42 pm

      So glad you like the ideas, Bar! And I bet your students would enjoy making the mandalas!

    • Reply
      Jean Van't Hul
      May 3, 2015 at 6:28 am

      Oh! You’re welcome, Bar! I bet the kids will enjoy the mandalas!

  • Reply
    April 29, 2015 at 4:09 am

    How clever to dye pasta with food coloring! I must try it. Painting pasta turned out to quite messy ;) Food coloring and paper plates is now on the list of crafts supplies in need of getting. Thank you for all your valuable tips!

    • Reply
      Jean Van't Hul
      May 3, 2015 at 6:26 am

      You’re welcome! Dyeing the pasta this way is virtually mess free and so easy! Painting it sounds fun, though… :)

  • Reply
    April 29, 2015 at 7:21 am

    These are gorgeous! I love both the mandalas and the sculptures! Thanks for the great ideas :)

  • Reply
    April 29, 2015 at 5:46 pm

    I love all the creations! The photo of the dyed pasta in the top right makes me want to dive in and create. Gorgeous!

  • Reply
    [email protected]
    May 1, 2015 at 7:17 am

    Love the pipe cleaners and pasta sculptures – great idea!

  • Reply
    Paula Lago
    May 2, 2015 at 9:40 am

    AW!! I love this!! It’s a rainny weekend here in Argentina, so we’re going to do some of this!! Great ideas!

  • Reply
    May 3, 2015 at 2:49 am

    Is this safe for toddlers? Never used rubbing alcohol before and wondered if my 20mth old put it in his mouth if it would be ok?

    • Reply
      Jean Van't Hul
      May 3, 2015 at 6:24 am

      Tobi, I would worry more about the choking hazard potential with a 20 month old. The rubbing alcohol dissipates quickly.

  • Reply
    Rachelle | TinkerLab
    May 8, 2015 at 2:52 am

    These sculptures are so much fun, Jean! And I love how you combined the pasta with clay AND glue. Awesome.

  • Reply
    October 18, 2015 at 7:20 am

    Great idea!
    But how much pasta to the rubbing alcohol/dye??

  • Reply
    Shanice Jones
    July 25, 2018 at 6:10 am

    great plan

  • Reply
    August 6, 2018 at 7:53 pm

    I was wondering that too. My pasta doesn’t look as dark as yours. What am I doing wrong. Am I using to much alcohol?

  • Reply
    Nalini Chugani
    October 30, 2018 at 10:27 am

    This is such a great idea! Where can we find those plastic containers you used to put the pasta in after its dyed?

    • Reply
      Jean Van't Hul
      November 2, 2018 at 8:37 am

      Hi Nalini! That’s a segmented hors d’oeuvre tray that I bought at a dollar store. You can find similar ones many places, including thrift stores. They are great for putting different collage materials in!

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