How to Make an Apple Mummy (Part Two)

Several months ago, I wrote a blog post about a STEM activity that uses apples to make mummies. It was a popular post with more than 5,000 views and 700+ shares. Since then, I received numerous requests for part two of the experiment... the part in which we take the apple mummies out of the salt mixture and complete the hydration process in an oven. Keep reading to find out how it's done!

Learn how to make a mummy out of a dehydrated apple. Making apple mummies is a great STEM activity for your social studies units about Ancient Egypt.

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Social Studies Integration

Making a dehydrated apple mummy is a terrific addition to any social studies unit about Ancient Egypt. This activity mimics the process used by the Ancient Egyptians used when preparing a pharaoh's body for burial. Part one of this activity mimicked how special salts called natron were used to absorb bodily fluids and start the dehydration process. The next part mimics how the hot dry air of Egypt's climate may have impacted how long it took for the bodies to completely dehydrate.


This photo shows the changes that happened to the apple during the first 21 days of this activity. Day 1 shows a freshly carved apple. Day 21 shows what the apple looked like after soaking in salt and baking soda for 21 days.

Materials Needed

Directions to Make an Apple Mummy

The directions describe how to dehydrate the apples in an oven or toaster oven. If you are using a dehydrator, modify these steps as needed to get the same results. Note: Adult supervision is required for this activity!

1. Preheat your oven to 200°F or 93°C.
2. Line your cookie sheet with tin foil.
3. Place your apple onto the cookie sheet and put it in the oven.
4. Set a timer for one hour.
5. After one hour, check on your apple. If there is still moisture in the apple, put the apple back into the oven for another hour.

This is how the apple looked after two hours in the oven.

This is how my apple looked after two hours in the oven.

6. Repeat this process every hour until the apple is completely dehydrated and there is no more moisture inside. It can take as long as 12+ hours to complete this step. Stay patient and don't leave the oven unattended for any length of time!
7. Once the apple is completely dehydrated, place it on a cooling rack or oven mitt to cool. 

This is how the apple looked after five hours in the toaster oven.

This is how my apple looked after five hours in the oven.

The apple before, during, and after dehydration

It took six hours for my apple to completely dry out. You can see the major changes that happened during that time. The apple shrunk to less than half its original size because all of the moisture inside of it is gone. Also, the lack of moisture in the apple has turned it as hard as a rock!

Mummies Made in Egypt by Aliki

Now that you have a mummified apple, your apple is ready to be decorated and prepared for burial. Stay tuned for part three of this series in which we recreate that process! In the meantime, you can learn more about mummies and how they are made by reading Mummies Made in Egypt by Aliki.

Mummies Made in Egypt by Aliki

🍎 Author's Summary: Aliki describes and illustrates the techniques and the reasons for the use of mummification in ancient Egypt.
🍎 Title: Mummies Made in Egypt
🍎 Author: Aliki
🍎 Illustrator: Aliki
🍎 Publisher: HarperCollins
🍎 Year: 1985
🍎 Pages: 32

Did you enjoy this blog post about making an apple mummy? If so check out these blog posts for more books and activities:

search words: Ancient Egypt, mummy, mummies, mummification, mummified, dehydrate, dehydration, dehydrating, dehydrated, apple, apples, social studies, STEM

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