In this fun and easy excavation activity for kids, we’re going to make a Gold Pay Dirt Edible Excavation. This fun snack will bring out the Excavating Adventurer in your child as they dig into this delicious treat and discover edible gold nuggets.
Pro tip: This activity is also great for birthday parties!
  • Oreo cookies
  • Gold food coloring spray
  • Aluminum foil, wax paper, or parchment paper
  • Zip lock freezer bag
  • Kitchen mallet
  • Optional - Mini marshmallows, candy rocks, M&M's, cereal or other small edible items. We are going to color one or more of these items with the gold spray to act as the gold in our pay dirt excavation. You can even set aside some of your Oreos and color them with the edible gold spray. 
  • Bowl to serve the Gold Pay Dirt Edible Excavation. A new and unused gold pan is a really cool touch. You can also use small plastic or metal pails. 
  • Spoon to dig around and enjoy the edible excavation. You can also order spoons online that look like little shovels!


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  1. Place an amount of Oreos in the zip lock bag that will make enough "dirt" for your excavation.
  2. Gentle tap the bag of Oreos with the kitchen mallet and break the cookies into small chunks and pieces. 
  3. Lay out a sheet of foil or wax paper. 
  4. Sprinkle some of the items you are going to color with gold spray. 
  5. Follow the direction on the edible gold spray and color your items.
  6. Once they dry, flip the items over and color the other side. 
  7. After the items have completely dried, put them in the bowl.
  8. Pour the crushed Oreo cookies in the bowl.
  9. Mix the Gold Pay Dirt Edible Excavation.
  10. Serve and watch your little ones enjoy discovering the gold nuggets!


I hope you enjoyed this super quick tutorial and had fun creating your own Gold Pay Dirt Edible Excavation to investigate and explore. These excavations are very easy to make and a lot of fun!
Pro tip: Use this activity to create some excitement around discussions or lessons about gold, The Gold Rush, mining and more!
If you love rocks, geology, and excavating as much as we do, be sure to check out our Excavating Adventures monthly subscription by clicking the link below and get an awesome new excavation delivered each month loaded with rocks, minerals, gemstones, fossils, and more!
Happy Excavating!
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