Rice heating pad

Easy Sewing Project: Rice Heating Pad

It’s wintertime, with freezing temps, and we all look for ways to stay cozy and warm. (Check out this post for lots of winter ideas!) Heating pads filled with rice are a great solution, and they are SO easy to make yourself! It’s a quick sewing project that will leave you toasty warm! I love to have mine in my lap while I’m curled up with a movie or book. I pop it into the microwave while my car heats up, and bring it along with me on those icy mornings. Sometimes, on those bitter cold nights, I tuck into bed with the heating pad on my feet! This also makes a great gift, that’s very cheap to make. Today I’m going to share the simple how-to for making your own microwave heating pad!

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  • Soft fabric. I like using flannel. I got two heating pads out of a 1/2 yard cut.
  • Matching thread
  • 5lb bag of rice. 
  • Sewing machine
DIY rice heating pad


Step 1: Cut out your rectangle into a 20″ x 18″ piece. Fold in half, right sides together

Step 2: Using a straight stitch, you are going to sewing along the shorter sides. But be sure to leave an inch or so of free space at the top of your seam, not going all the way to the edge of the fabric. You’ll need this extra space to make hemming easier at the end! This will create one big pocket. Then zig-zag finish the seam allowance.

sewing tutorial



Step 3: Turn the pocket inside out. You are going to place three seams, with the wrong sides together now, creating four pockets to fill with rice. Measure to the very middle and place a seam, being sure to leave that inch of free fabric at the top to allow for finishing. Then measure to the middle of each of the two pockets you’ve created, and place seams, again, leaving an inch open at the top.

Adding Rice:

Step 4: Add the rice! This can be a bit tricky, adding rice into each of the four compartments, without spilling! Standing up your heating pad against something helps. I just tried to disperse the rice evenly. and all 5lbs fit inside. 

adding the rice
rice heating pad


Step 5: Finish off the open seam. This is why you left free space at the top of each seam. Now you can easily fold over the top edge twice to make a hem. I folded a 1/2 inch, and then another 1/2 inch, folding in the corners to ensure everything would be sealed. Pin and sew. This may be tricky! Just go slow and careful, being sure that you are enclosing the seam properly – you don’t want rice escaping everywhere!

finish the rice heating pad

Finished product:

Voila! You have an easy and cute rice heating pad, that’s warm and heavy. So comforting on cold days & nights! I stick mine in the microwave for 4-5 minutes, and it’s toasty warm!

Maybe this kind of project isn’t for you – here is a another cute way to get a warm heating pad. These “Warmies” stuffed animals heat up in the microwave and are a nice weight for kids. I’ve nannied for a kiddo before, who loved to snuggle her warmy in the mornings – so cute and cuddly! They totally inspired this 5lb heating pad project!

Have fun with picking out fabric and whipping up something cozy!

Stay warm & cozy my friends!


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