Homemade Sidewalk Paint Recipe

Paint up some fun outside with our easy homemade sidewalk paint!

sidewalk paint cover photo

We often use this recipe for sidewalk paint.  It’s so easy, you can whip up a batch of creative fun for the driveway, sidewalk or patio in just a matter of minutes. This paint is always a hit with the hooligans.  I think I love it as much as they do, so I always get in on the fun too.

homemade yellow and blue sidewalk paint with paintbrush

Supplies needed to make your homemade sidewalk paint:

  • A sectioned container or several bowls
  • cornstarch (in the U.K. this is known as cornflour)
  • water
  • food colouring or liquid water colours (I personally like Wilton Icing gels for their intense colours)
  • small whisk

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mix sidewalk paint in a sectioned container to make using it easy and accesible to all.The sectioned container that I always use for mixing my paint in came previously packaged with fruit, from the produce department in the grocery store.  I held onto it for projects like this because I like how deep the wells are.  The well in the center is perfect for filling with water to rinse our paintbrushes.

Making your sidewalk paint:

Add just over a quarter cup of cornstarch to each section of the container.  (I used about 1/4 c. plus 2 tbsp.

Add a little less than 1/4 of cold water (a little at a time so you don’t over-do it) to each section, whisking until the cornstarch has completely dissolved.  If you’ve played with cornstarch and water before, you’ll know that it has an interesting quality, and can turn from liquid to solid and back again depending on how much you handle it.   You want your paint to be thick enough that it drizzles from the whisk.

Add your food colouring, and stir well. I started by adding a few drops of our new liquid watercolours, but I wasn’t happy with the strength of the colours, so I went back to my old standby: Wilton Icing gels, and added a dab to each well.  You can’t beat the Wilton gels when it comes to intense colour


Once your colours are mixed in, you’re ready to hit the pavement!


The hooligans love this stuff.IMG_8400


You can paint with it just like you do with regular paint, but I love to drizzle and dab the paint to create thick puddles of colour.cornstarch sidewalk paint (happy hooligans)

When they were finished in the driveway, we moved up to the smoother surface of our front walk, and they had another go of it there.IMG_8403

Someone got the bright idea to grab some sticks of sidewalk chalk and dip them into the paint.  This made for a neat effect when drawing, but even more interesting was how the paint immediately hardened in layers when they dipped their chalk into each of the colours in the tray, so they ended up with these beautiful, multi-coloured sticks of chalk.  They would then crumble the layers off and mash them into the pavement.chalk dipped in sidewalk paint

They were happily entertained for about an hour with this small batch of paint. And when the day was over, it washed away with a spray from the garden hose, and didn’t leave a mark.

Not so sure about these legs though.  A soapy bath was in order for this little one.  I rinsed her off, but she went home with tell-tale trails of blue on her shins.

Baby painting her legs with sidewalk chalk

Happy Painting!cornstarch sidewalk paint recipe

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Yours in play, Jackie from Happy Hooligans

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