Playdough recipes
Looking for playdough for your children? Instead of buying it, why not make your own? Making your own playdough is a lot of fun and it’s easy to involve children in the process.Home made playdough has no harmful ingredients (it contains food colouring if your child has an allergy) and is easy to make. I have provided three easy to follow recipes for the following types of playdough:-

Whilst eating a little will not harm your child, I recommend that you discourage them from doing so.

Making playdough will also assist your children to develop their social skills, as they discuss what they are making and show others their creations (they are using their imagination as they create their masterpieces). They can experiment with different shapes and sizes when they use cutters and rolling pins and they learn muscle control as they roll and squeeze their creations into shape. It can also be good for hand and eye co-ordination but most of all it is enjoyable and gives children a sense of self-satisfaction when they have created something unique to them.

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Textured Playdough

Before we get started with the playdough recipes, I thought I’d share an innovative way of introducing your kids to different textures using playdough. Using one of the playdough recipes which are listed below, simply add any of the following:-

Playdough recipes
  • sand
  • rice
  • confetti
  • split peas
  • lentils
  • glitter
  • small leaves

You can split the playdough into halves and then insert different textures into each half.

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Cooked Playdough


  • 2 cups of plain flour.
  • 1 cup of salt.
  • 4 tablespoons oil.
  • 2 cups of water.
  • 4 teaspoons cream or tartar.
  • Food colouring.

How to make it

Mix all ingredients together and cook in a microwave oven on a medium low power setting for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Further cooking maybe required for 1 minute on low power.

Alternatively, this can be done in a saucepan on the stove stirring continuously until it comes together well…

For both methods knead well and store as for uncooked playdough.

This method is great for the children to play with whilst it is still hot (obviously not too hot though!).

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Uncooked Playdough


  • 3 cups of water.
  • 3 cups of plain flour.
  • 1 ½ cups of salt.
  • 3 cups of boiling water.
  • 3 tablespoons cream of tartare.
  • 3 tablespoons of oil (any cheap cooking oil).
  • Food colouring.

How to make it

Mix all of the dry ingredients together in a large bowl, together with the oil and food colouring and mix well.

Add the boiling water, ensuring that all of the ingredients are mixed in well. You will need to knead the playdough well and this is an excellent opportunity to involve the children, helping you do this.

Place the mixture into a plastic bag and put it in the fridge* for an hour or so. Store it in a plastic bag in the fridge to stop it drying out and you’re done!

*The Playdough can be used straight away, but for best results it is better to place it in the fridge first.

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Wheat Free Playdough


  • 225g/2 cups rice flour.
  • 225g/2 cups salt (makes it unpalatable to eat).
  • 15 ml/1 tbsp cream of tartar.
  • 30 ml/2 tbsp sunflower oil.
  • 250 ml/1 cup water.
  • 3 tablespoons of oil (any cheap cooking oil).
  • A few drops of food colouring (optional).

How to make it

Mix the flour, salt and cream of tartar in a saucepan.

Add the oil and gradually blend in the water and food colouring, if using.

Cook over moderate heat, stirring, until mixture is stiff and leaves the sides of the pan clean.

Leave until cool enough to handle, then knead gently on the work surface until smooth. Store in airtight container.

Recipe reprinted with permission, taken from Your Allergy Free Diet Plan for Babies & Children by Carol Humphries, Foulsham & Co., 2003.

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