This Gak Recipe (aka slime recipe) has been on my to-do list ever since reading about Amy’s The Great Slime-Off on Child Central Station. Amy shares two different recipes: the first calls for liquid starch and the second calls for Borax. I looked all over town for liquid starch and it was nowhere to be found. Is it prohibited from the State of California?
But the second recipe that called for Borax was workable, and felt a bit like fate because my daughter’s nursery school teacher made up a big batch of it last week. This also fell on the heels of reading the Ooey Gooey Handbook (affiliate), which is FILLED with all sorts of luscious recipes like this one. If you’re into this sort of thing, this book is fabulous! You can follow Lisa Murphy of Ooey Gooey on Facebook for loads of good information.
This particular slime, also called Flubber, Gluep, Glurch, or Gak, is made from glue, water, and the tiniest bit of Borax (a mild powdered laundry soap).
Borax is soap and it’s toxic, so please use your best judgment and common sense if you choose to use this with young children.
We used half of this recipe from Steve Spangler Science, and the part that gave me the most confidence is where he says “the measurements don’t have to be exact.” Go ahead and breathe a sigh of relief with me! This site also has a wonderful description on the science behind the recipe.
- 8 oz. bottle Elmer’s school glue
- 8 oz. water
- 1 teaspoon Borax mixed into 1/2 cup of warm water
- Food coloring or liquid watercolors, optional
How to Make Gak
- Mix the glue and water together in a mixing bowl.
- Add a few drops of color, if desired.
- Slowly add a bit of the Borax solution into the water-glue solution. Mix
- Keep adding small amounts of the borax solution to the water-glue solution until it comes together like slime.
- Play with your slime!
- Note: Slime is NOT for eating!
I wasn’t sure how messy this would get and set the whole project up in our big mixing tub. We began by squeezing an almost-full 4 ounce bottle of glue into a glass bowl. Then we mixed in 1 1/2 bottles of warm water to the glue. The recipe calls for 4 ounces of glue and 4 ounces of warm water…do you see how fast I went off-recipe!! But like Steve says, the measurements don’t have to be exact and it worked out just fine!
N added red food coloring and mixed it into a lovely shade of pink.
Then we mixed 1 teaspoon of Borax into 1/2 cup of water, and slowly added the solution to the glue mixture…
Until the slime started to come together. We did not use all of the Borax solution.
At first it was really wet and gooey.
And stringy and sloppy.
And then it started to pull together.
Until it was one easy-to-work-with mass of slime that could be pulled apart and manipulated…to some extent. Because really, this slime has a mind of its own.
N requested a muffin tray with the idea that it would make nice little cakes. Can you believe how viscous and pliable it is?! Completely different from play dough, and absolutely inspiring to little miss curious.
We often roll out our play dough, so she gave that a try and complained that it didn’t work. Good experiment!
Next she tried cookie cutters. Also a bust.
But the scissors…oh, the scissors were so much fun and completely rewarding with this medium.
When you’re done using your gak/flubber/slime, you can store it in a sealable container or Ziploc bag for about 2 weeks (when it may start to smell!).
If you’ve made Gak, or if you try this at home, please feel free to add your photos or links in the comment area. I love to see your ideas!
More PlayDough Recipes
Rainbow Play Dough, Tinkerlab
How to Make Cloud Dough, the easiest dough recipe that calls for oil and flour.
How to Make Goop with just cornstarch and water.
Make amazing scented pumpkin spice playdough.
DIY Masa Playdough, made with masa harina
How to make Salt Dough with just salt, flour, and water.
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