Craft, Unlimited Ideas

Dyed Rice Candle

A dyed rice candle is an easy way to decorate a candle holder with a plethora of colors!

I came across the idea of dying rice in order to make décor and I was immediately intrigued. Dying rice is very simple and can create a lot of color. And layering could make interesting combinations and designs. I wanted to start of simple. So, I went with one of my favorite combinations of colors: a rainbow! Check out the MCG Shop to purchase!

One of the great things about this craft is that the dye I used for the rice is food coloring. Which means it’s edible. If everything goes wrong, I can just cook up the rice! I mean, yes, it will probably be brown from all of the food coloring but hey! Recycling!

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There was more that went into this project than I expected but making dyed rice candles was still very simple. To make them, I needed:

  • 6 Ziplock bags, one for each color
  • Rice, any kind of white rice
  • Food dye, desired colors
  • 2 Glass Jars, I used an 16-ounce jar
  • 2 Tealight candle
  • Black Spray Paint

I used the black spray to cover the lids and they still had their previous product labels. This might not be a necessary depending on the what the lid of the jar you are using looks like. I cleaned each jar well with adhesive remover, soap, and water before using them.


Measuring the Rice

To start, I decided to fill up each jar with rice to see how much rice is needed to fill up each space. About 340 grams (1 2/3 cups) of rice was needed to fill a 16-ounce jar for a dyed rice candle. Which means that I was working with 680 grams (2 1/3 cups) of rice since I wanted to fill up two containers.

Then I needed to figure out how much rice I wanted to put in each Ziplock bag. Since I wanted the rows to be even, I ended up divided the 680 grams by six. This meant that every Ziplock bag should have 113.3 grams (1/2 cups) of rice.

Dying the Rice

Now it was onto dying the rice. This step is effectively a contained mess. Using the food dye, I dropped a few drops of the desired color into the Ziplock. Then I sealed the bag and rolled the rice around in the color. After manipulating the bag for a minute or two, the dye has distributed among the rice and colored all of it.

The rainbow is technically seven colors, but six colors is so much easier. I always found it weird that blue, indigo, and violet were all in the rainbow. That means it is either two blues or two purples (depending on how you look at it).

Placing the Rice

Using a spoon, I moved 56 grams (1/4 cups) of each color from the Ziplock to the jar to make the dyed rice candles. I started with the purple, then moved onto blue, the green, yellow, orange, and finally red. Stacking up the colors made a beautiful rainbow! The spoon prevented me from getting dye on my hands.

Lastly, I placed the tea candle in the top layer. I shimmied the candle into the rice to get it into the top layer without messing the with layer too much.

Spray Painting the Lids

The last step I had to do was spray paint the lids. I decided to use a gloss black spray paint. I used black paint because I thought it would look good against the rainbow. And I made it glossy because the lid was glossy before I spray painted it. I thought matching the finish would be the best way to create a more natural looking finish. And with the lids done, I have my fully made dyed rice candle!


Making a dyed rice candle was extremely easy and a great way to do a simple craft. This is something that can have a lot of variations with color so I’m curious if more intricate designs can be made. This also seems like a fun craft to do with people of any age although the dye could get a little messy.

One thing I did notice is that the cool colors did not take the dye as well as the hot colors. This left a couple of grains of rice that had white splotches on them. I am not sure if this is due to not adding enough dye or if the rice just doesn’t like taking the colors, but I still like the way that it looks.


Pushing around the Dye

When putting the dye into a Ziplock bag, you need to really manipulate the rice to get the color to spread. This would often mean pushing the undyed rice into areas that already had dye or where spots of dye were visible.

Quick Recipe

Dyed Rice Candles

A dyed rice candle is an easy way to decorate a candle holder with a plethora of colors!
Yield: 2 16-Oz Candles


  • 6 Ziplock bags one for each color
  • 2 ⅓ Cup Rice any kind of white rice
  • Food dye desired colors
  • 2 Glass Jars I used an 16-ounce jar
  • 2 Tealight candle
  • Black Spray Paint


  • Measure out how much rice is needed the glass container. Divide this value by the number of colors you want in the final dyed rice candle.
  • Place the divided amount into the Ziplock bags. Put a few drops of dye into the Ziplock bag. Use your hands to move the bag around and dye the remaining the rice.
  • Using a spoon, place the layer of the color into the jar. Repeat until the jar is full. Place a tealight candle in the top layer of rice.
  • Spray paint the lid of the jar if desired

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