Science Education

Formerly known as European Learning Laboratory for the Life Sciences

Our inspiring educational experiences share the scientific discoveries of EMBL with young learners aged 10-19 years and teachers in Europe and beyond. We belong to EMBL’s Science Education and Public Engagement office.

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Genie in a bottle – kitchen experiment


Did you ever wonder where the small holes in bread come from? Doing a simple experiment, we can get to the bottom of this phenomenon. Using ingredients from the kitchen, you can make processes visible which happen during bread making but can usually not be observed – and by doing so you will discover a very special genie in a bottle.


  • 1 sachet of dried yeast
  • 2 teaspoons of sugar
  • 6 teaspoons of flour
  • 100 ml water
  • 0.75 or 1 L glass bottle (white glass without labels)
  • 2 teaspoons
  • 1 fork
  • 1 small bowl
  • 1 measuring cylinder
  • 1 kitchen thermometer
  • 1 kettle or pan to heat water
  • 1 funnel
  • 10 cm piece of sticky tape
  • 1 balloon
  • permanent marker to draw on balloon


View and download the protocol below.


Topic area:  Cell biology

Age group:  < 10, 10-12

Author: ELLS Team