Have you ever wondered what you could do with that leftover pizza box when all the pizza has been scarfed out of it? Most of us will just toss it in the trash or recycling bin but next time keep it for a fun project that can teach kids about solar power and is fairly simple to put together. While you won’t be using the pizza box as your new oven it will be fun to see how it works and kids will love making simple things like hot dogs or even s’mores.
The Things you will need:
- 1 empty pizza box
- Aluminum foil
- Black paint and brushes
- Shredded paper
- Clear plastic wrap
- Duct tape
- Simple food (ex. Hot dogs, s’mores that leftover pizza that needs warmed up)
- Cut a flap in the top of one pizza box. The flap should be cut on three sides, with the fourth side being closest to the lid's "hinge." Cut the flap quite large so that there is only 1 to 2 inches of lid surrounding the flap.
- Line the entire inside of the pizza box with foil (shiny side up), then spread the shredded paper across the bottom.
- Seal the shredded paper layer with another foil layer, shiny side up. This creates insulation to trap the heat inside the solar oven.
- Paint the top layer of foil with black paint. Let it dry completely. You can also paint outside of pizza box or even cover the whole box with foil
- Bend the lid flap up. Cover the underside of the flap with foil, shiny side up. Use the duct tape to secure the foil around the back of the flap. Pull the foil as smoothly as possible.
- Create a tight seal over the opening in the lid with the plastic wrap. Secure it with duct tape on the underside of the lid. Pull the plastic wrap tight so that the covering is smooth and wrinkle-free.
- Place the food inside the pizza box on the black-painted foil. Close the lid and ensure that there are no gaps for air to escape. If desired, lightly tape the lid seams with duct tape.
- Angle the lid flap towards the sun, so that the sun's rays are reflected into the plastic-covered opening. The solar oven will reach approximately 200 degrees on a sunny day
Now all you have to do is wait for the snack to warm up and viola your very own pizza box oven. A little side note: Your pizza box oven takes about twice as long to cook something as a regular oven so patience is a virtue with this project. Also make sure it is above 60 degrees and sunny or the oven will not work as well or maybe not at all.