Baby Food Container Matchbox {TUTORIAL}

Baby Food Container Matchboxes

well summer is in full swing here! yay! i love summer. and i have a really fun summer craft for y’all….an adorable match holder made from plastic baby food containers! i know we go through matches like crazy during the summer months with cook outs and s’more roasts. i originally got the idea using StumbleUpon from the Ruffled Blog where she made wedding favors with this concept. but she used spice jars for hers. well, i don’t go through my spices that quickly….and plastic Gerber baby food containers are *the perfect* length to fit a match.

Adorable Match holder made with plastic Baby Food containerbut we sure do go through the baby food around here! :)

these adorable little matchboxes are perfect for BBQ’s, picnics, fireworks, parties, cook outs, hiking, wedding favors, etc.

*Gift Idea* wouldn’t these be SO cute for the kiddos to make for Dad for Father’s Day? especially if you were giving Dad a grill for Father’s Day?

TUTORIAL {these come together so fast!}


Strike Anywhere matches {important that you don’t get Strike on Box matches}

black sandpaper

empty plastic baby food containers


hot glue

trace a 2.5″ x 1.75″ rectangle on the back of the sandpaper

cut out the rectangle and round the corners.

TIP: i recommend not using your best pair of scissors because the sandpaper will dull your scissors.

then hot glue the sandpaper to the lid of the baby food container

and there you have the cutest little matchbox ever!

BUT i couldn’t stop there….

i had to make a cute match holder for my kitchen too using a tiny Mason jar! so much prettier than a boring box they come in.

 mason jar matchbox

What else do you like to do with empty baby food containers?

Hi! I'm Linda, the craft addict behind Craftaholics Anonymous®, a craft blog. Crafting is cheaper than therapy, right? When I'm not DIYing something, I can be found taxiing around our 4 crazy kids or working out. Or shoe shopping... because you can never have too many shoes! Happy crafting! ♥

Latest posts by Linda (see all)

Join the Conversation

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. 1

    First, I’m loving those small baby food containers. I’ve never seen those as my baby will be 30 next month. I need that matchbox for my porch. I just commented to hubby last night that we needed a way to keep matches waterproof out there so we could light our citronella candles. Great job!

  2. 2

    What a great project!! This looks so easy. Those baby food match boxes would be perfect for camping! And the jar one would be great to keep close to the mantel : )

    1. 2.1

      I made the jar one, but I put a hole in the top of the jar so I could just shake a match out without opening the lid. I also got “strike on box” matches at the dollar store and used the striking strip from the box on my jar lid.

      Thanks so much for the craft!

      1. Love the hole idea! Thanks for sharing!

  3. 3

    Love it! TFS! I saw some of those little flip lid glass jars w/ the rubber rings, little ones not too much bigger than that mason jar. ‘Think there’s a run to the store to get those! :-) BTW, L.O.V.E your blog!

  4. 4

    That is so clever! I’m pretty sure I still have a container or two that I’ve been saving for a few years:)

  5. 7

    Well, aren’t those little matchboxes wayyyy too clever!!! I love this idea….great job, great tutorial!!
    Thanks for the inspiration…..

  6. 8

    Love it! So much cuter than the match box!

  7. 9

    What a great idea! I love this! Just saved it to my “to do crafts” folder!

  8. 10

    I love this idea, but I’m thinking I’ll put the sandpaper on the inside of the lid, or on the bottom, so that I can leave this in the tray of my barbeque and the sand paper won’t get ruined by the sun and rain.

    1. 10.2

      Putting the sandpaper inside is probably a safety hazzard. Have you ever seen the strike area of a matchbook inside near the other matches? I haven’t!! You are even suppose to close the book before striking a match.

  9. Pingback: Favorite Finds – 06/11/11 | ememby

  10. 11
    Jane Harned

    Love this idea! so much so, I set out today to make it…ran into a little problem, can’t find “light anywhere matches”! I did some research online and apparently they aren’t safe since they light anywhere, so I couldn’t find them in TN!

    1. 11.1

      Oh no Jane! I found them at Target. Maybe they’re not allowed in TN?! So sorry it didn’t work out for you!
      happy crafting,

    2. 11.2

      As far as I know, you can’t buy strike anywhere matches anymore. I opened the box of matches, using a canning jar…I traced a circle using the jar lid over the striking surface of packaging, cut it out and secured that between the lid and ring. Works like a charm, cute too!

      1. Great idea, Rebecca!! I like that. Thanks for sharing! I’m so glad you stopped by today.
        happy crafting,

  11. 12

    Do you know what grit sandpaper you used? I’ve tried three different grits, and they have all just sanded off the red part that lights the match!

    1. 12.1

      Hi Jessica,
      Gosh, I don’t remember the exact grit, but it is super fine. Like a finishing sand paper. Does that help? So sorry to hear you’re having bad luck with it!
      happy crafting,

      1. Jessica

        Thanks Linda, guess I’ll just have to run over to Lowe’s with a few matches in hand and test out a few more grits. You always have that moment at the end of a little project where you feel so clever and your expectations are high… Well both myself and my SO ceremoniously grabbed matches and tried to strike them, it was such an unexpected result that we couldn’t help but laugh at ourselves!

        1. This happened to me, too! Did you ever find out the grit of the sandpaper? Mine may be too rough..

          1. I just made mine with coarse…not thinking, and, of course, it didn’t work. I tried the fine (150), and it still just sanded down my matches :( Is there sandpaper finer than 150??

          2. Hi Kylie,
            Yes, there is 200 grit sandpaper. But also make sure your matches are strike anywhere. They are different than the strike on the box matches. Hope this helps!
            happy crafting,

          3. Connie

            220 worked for me.

  12. 13

    Didn’t know they make plastic baby food containers. Great idea!

  13. 14

    What oz size mason jar is this? I’m going to be doing this nifty project as a favor for a party and want to assure I order the right size. Is 8 oz about right?

    1. 14.1

      Hi Jenny,
      What a great idea for a party favor! Yes, I used the 8 oz size mason jar.
      thanks for stopping by!
      happy crafting,

  14. 15

    For campers you could also put the sandpaper inside the lids to keep out dampness.

  15. 16
    Sharon in MI

    Very cute idea that I just may have to try.
    As far as scissors go, I’ve always heard just the opposite – that you can deliberately cut through fine sandpaper in order to SHARPEN your scissors.

  16. 18

    What a clever idea, you so rock in my book.

  17. 19

    Ive been thinking about this idea some, and if you can’t find the strike anywhere matches, couldn’t you just cut the strike strip off a box of strike on box matches and use that instead of the sand paper? Also a tip: if you put the sand paper inside the container make sure the matches don’t come in contact with it or you could have a big ball of flames! Great idea btw, I’m using it for our 72 hour kits and will also have one in our long term food storage!

  18. 20

    Where does one get black sandpaper?

  19. 21

    What type of sandpaper? or what grid size? Thanks Tina

  20. Pingback: Craftaholics Anonymous® | 28 DIY Christmas Gifts for Men

  21. 22

    I have tried a number of nice fine black sandpapers (400 grit so far) and they all don’t work with the safety matches I bought. I noted they had 1500 grit at the hardware store so I may try that or have to resort to cutting up the box. It’s just not a sleek using the box strip instead of the black sandpaper. :( I will also try to find different matches (strike anywhere), but as these are for gifts I was hoping to get them in bulk.

  22. 23

    Any special kind of sandpaper? I bought it today to go with the candles I made and tried to strike the match to give it a try, but it won’t light it.

    1. 23.1

      Hi Kathleen,
      Make sure you are using “strike anywhere” matches. That is the crucial part. The sandpaper should be fine, like 100 grit.

  23. 24
    t. koenig

    To improve the jar method, place sandpaper INSIDE the lid also. add a disc of wax paper over it, and you will still have a stroking surface if the outside gets wet. Wax paper keeps the match heads away from the striker if it gets shaken.

    1. 24.1

      If you put the matches in the jar with the heads down you wouldn’t need to worry about them rubbing against the sandpaper. Besides, when you think about the force needed to light a match, I doubt the matches could light themselves even if they did brush against the sandpaper.

  24. 25
    t. koenig

    If you can’t find strike anywhere matches (it’s getting harder) use the regular sort, but cut part of the striker from the box and glue that on the lid. The striker patch contains Phosphorus which is what starts the initial flame (the red tip on strike anywhere matches).

  25. 26

    Pleeeease…do put the sandpaper in the inside…always guaranteed to be dry.

  26. 27

    I actually make modern match holders. I import sheets of real match striking surface and punch whimsical shapes out of them. So people who love striking matches to light their candles, incense, and what not, can literally strike their match on a striking surface shaped like a heart, moon, cat, butterfly. Stop by my shop and check it out!

  27. 28

    Be sure to use extra fine sandpaper. Or a section of the striker grit from that matchbox. Put the sandpaper on the inside of the lid. Wet sandpaper won’t light your match.

  28. 29

    Be sure to use extra fine sandpaper. Or a section of the striker grit from that matchbox. Put the sandpaper on the inside of the lid. Wet sandpaper won’t light your match.

  29. 30

    Sandpaper only works as a striker with strike-anywhere matches. Match strikers contain phosphorus which is not present in sandpaper.

  30. Pingback: Craftaholics Anonymous® | 29 DIY Wedding Ideas

  31. 31


  32. 32

    Does the black Sand paper actually work? I tried this this week and it did NOT work with brown sand paper. Thanks! It is cute though!

    1. 32.1

      The match HAVE to be strike anywhere matches, or they won’t work.

  33. 33

    If I may, the sandpaper is chosen mostly by grit. When anybody wants to follow this “tip” or “hack” they need to buy 100 grit silicone carbide paper. Other types are wet/dry sandpaper, aluminum oxide, or Emery Cloth.
    Also remember the paper needs to be kept dry otherwise when you need to light a match, you might have problems. The advantage of a sealed container is the ability to keep those match heads from absorbing moisture and becoming worthless.

  34. 34

    This is a great idea, BUT, you should put the striker plate on the inside of lid to prevent it from getting damp.