DIY Holiday Gift: Doughnut Bath Bombs

Posted by – December 20, 2016
Categories: Health & Healing


I find making my own gifts a calming alternative to the spending frenzy that surrounds the holidays. I opt for that personal touch that comes with home-made things, usually making edibles such as fruit butters, pastries, or pickles. But this year I wanted to try something a little different: bath bombs!

I found this wonderfully simple bath bomb recipe in one of my favorite titles this year: The Herbal Handbook for Home and Health by Pip Waller (an amazingly useful resource for making many household and bath products). We’ll be featuring more great DIY gift ideas inspired by our books all month, so be sure to stay tuned!

To the left is the original recipe. As you can see, it’s very simple and traditional. I thought I could easily spruce up this recipe to make these gifts a little more my style. I wanted vibrant colors—then it occurred to me (as I ate a doughnut): I love doughnuts, why not make them look like doughnuts?!

Below I’ve listed the modified recipe I used to make these tasty-looking bath treats. I followed the basic recipe, but changed essential oils and food coloring to taste (so to speak). The icing adds one more step to this recipe, but with the melt and pour soap base it’s a quick and fun step—doughnut decoration!

WARNING: Tell your gift recipient(s) that these are NOT edible before you give them! I’ve made that mistake nearly twice now…


Doughnut Bath Bombs

Inspired by Rosy Bath Bomb, courtesy of Teri Evans

  • Doughnut mold
  • Spray bottle
  • 1 large and 3+ small mixing bowls
  • Whisk
  • Wax paper


  • 2½ cups baking soda
  • 3 tbs. coconut OR  cacao oil
  • ¾ cup citric acid (fine grain)


  • 30 drops vanilla essential oil
  • 10 drops lemon essential oil
  • 5 drops almond essential oil
  • Brown food coloring (this can be made, but prepare to experiment)
  • Water in a spray bottle


  • Melt and pour soap base (I recommend shea butter)
  • 30 drops vanilla essential oil
  • Food coloring of your choice (gotta love neon!)
  • Sprinkles of your choice (clearly I prefer the round ones; I also used pink salt)

Makes 24 bombs (fewer if you use a larger mold).

Use after 24 hours. Keeps up to 1 year in an airtight container. (Note: They can’t go off, but the smell slowly disappears as the essential oils evaporate.)


Before beginning, be sure to prep your space and measure out your ingredients , as you have to work rather quickly—first when you add water to the mix, and second once you’re ready to add the “icing” to your doughnut bombs.


  • Measure out your ingredients and prep bowls for use
  • Add the food coloring to the water in the spray bottle and shake well. Don’t be shy with the dye if you want a nice, rich brown.
  • Cut soap base into 1-ounce cubes, 1–2 per icing color and set in small containers.

Follow the steps in this slideshow:


[slideshow_deploy id=’38233′]


Tags: Pip Waller DIY
About the Author

Maren began her publishing career as an intern at Counterpoint and Soft Skull Press, where she stayed on for more than four years as a publicist and web coordinator. She joined the NAB team in 2015 and is still stoked about it—she gets to read her Rob Brezsny horoscope (Scorpio)​ before anyone else! Maren lives in Oakland with a monstrous Maine Coon and spends the majority of her spare time convincing him to not eat all of her houseplants. Sometimes she has time to write, paint things, garden, or repair furniture.​