Homemade Fossils

If you’re ever in need of a coffee break AND a fun and educational craft for the kids, this is perfect! My recipe makes enough dough for three kids to make one large or three small “fossils” each, and it uses just the right amount of leftover coffee to empty my coffeemaker.


  • 1 cup of wet, used coffee grounds
  • 1/2 cup cold coffee
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 1 cup flour
  • parchment or waxed paper


  1. fossil 1Mix the ingredients together with your hands, and add more flour if the dough is too sticky. Divide the dough into even pieces and place on waxed or parchment paper.
  2. Collect specimens to “fossilize.” My kids each tried various things, from plant leaves, flower petals, and tree bark to seashells and pine cones.
  3. fossil 2Press the items in the dough using fingers or the back of a spoon and carefully lift out each item after the desired impression is made.
  4. Set “fossils” out to dry overnight. You may need to turn them over halfway through time for even drying.
  5. fossil 3

    A great way to recycle the leftover coffee!