Learn + Play Play Recipes

Homemade Play Dough Recipe & Ideas

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Bryson loves play dough.  Some nights, I’m pretty sure he actually dreams about it, because he wakes up asking to play with it.  No kidding.  The thing about store bought play dough is that it dries out in no time.  Toddlers like to leave things out, like play dough, for instance.  Bryson will play with it a while, then he’ll play with his cars and trucks, then he’ll return to his play dough.  By the end of the day, it’s dried out and useless. 

I came across this recipe and it seemed simple enough.  The ingredients are all things I keep in my pantry.

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Ingredients Needed:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 1 T cream of tartar
  • 1 T cooking oil
  • 1 cup water
  • Food coloring (optional)

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Directions:

In a large pot, combine all dry ingredients and mix well.  Add the cooking oil and water, mix well.  Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the dough starts to form a ball and pull away from the pot.  Most of the wet dough should look dry.  Turn onto a cutting board (or counter) and knead.  (Yes, it’ll be hot!)  Allow the dough to cool, then add the food coloring.  If the dough is too warm, the color will not work as well.

You can add extracts or spices for scent or throw in some glitter after it has cooled.

Storage:

I keep our play dough in plastic storage bags in the refrigerator.  From what I’ve read, you can store it at room temperature.  An advantage to the fridge though is that Bryson hasn’t thought to look there for his play dough.

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Play:

Be creative.  I let Bryson choose the colors for our play dough this round.  We broke out the cookie cutters (Christmas themed in May) and went to town making ghosts out of angels and turning gingerbread men and women into our family.  This Wilton 101-Piece Cookie Cutter Setincludes the alphabet, numbers, shapes, trucks, butterflies etc. and would be a fabulous set for play and learning.  Allow your child to use their imagination and just go with it!

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For more ideas, visit My Montessori Journey and Counting Coconuts.

Have you ever made homemade play dough?  I’d love to hear about your creations in the comments!

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