Homemade Play Dough

When I’m at a loss for something fun to do with the kids, or I need them to stay occupied while I accomplish a project, homemade play dough works for me!

  • By making your own play dough, you can customize the colors to fit the current holiday.
  • It’s less expensive than the store bought stuff.
  • The texture is so soft and smooth that I sometimes forget my projects and play along.  😉
  • It doesn’t get all crumbly like the store bought stuff.
  • My favorite thing about homemade play dough… if my 18 month old decides it looks good enough to eat… I don’t worry about her eating scary chemicals.

If you need a fun Valentine’s Day activity for your kids this week, make some homemade play dough!


Play Dough #1

  • 1 c. flour
  • 1/3 c. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. oil
  • 1 Tbsp. cream of tartar
  • 1 c. water
  • food coloring

Mix all together and place over low heat.  Stir often until it is the consistency of mashed potatoes.  Turn out onto waxed paper and cool.  Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Play Dough #2

  • 2 c. flour
  • 2 Tbsp. alum
  • 1 1/2 c. water
  • 1/2 c. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. oil
  • food coloring

Heat to boiling the water, salt, oil and food coloring.  Stir liquids into dry ingredients.  Knead until smooth.  Allow to cool.  Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Be sure to visit JessieLeigh where Valentine activities abound.  Link up with your own!  On Thursday, FishMama will host a Sweets for your Sweetie recipe swap, and on Friday we’ll all meet back here for Finer “Valentine’s” Things Friday!  Join us!

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.


  1. You’re such a great mom! I’ve heard you can add a little Vanilla to make it last longer and smell sweet. I haven’t tried it.

  2. I wanted you to know that you are a finalist in our Horsing Around Photo Contest.

  3. I always loved playdough as a kid! I’ve been wanting to make some, but I need to figure out a gluten-free flour that will work. (But in that case, it wouldn’t be very cheap… so I’m contemplating.) But it’s so fun! 🙂

    P.S. I sent you an e-mail. 🙂

  4. Thanks for sharing the recipes. Who doesn’t love play-doh?? 😉

  5. Ohhhhh thanks. I have been meaning to find a recipe. There is nothing as soothing and therapeutic as a nice warm hunk of homemade play-dough 🙂

  6. what a great blog you have here! i was planning on posting my own playdough recipe on my blog, but maybe next week =)

  7. Homemade play dough is the best! I’ll have to try your recipes sometime. We’ve been doing heart cutouts this week, too – but using the commercial stuff since I don’t have all my staple pantry items here in the US…

  8. Thanks for sharing the recipe…I’ll have to try this with my son!

  9. What fun! 😀 That is probably better than edible play dough as I don’t know how much I would play with it. LOL!

  10. Thanks for the recipes. We mostly use store bought but if I want to play I’ll make the homemade. I can’t stand the smell of store bought play-doh!

  11. I remember making homemade playdough as a child, but I’ve yet to do it with my own kids. Thanks for the recipes!

  12. Great! I have been looking for a recipe to try and work with. Thanks for these:-)

  13. My kids are going to love this! Thank you!

  14. Good reminder – I don’t know how many times my daughter has received playdough as a present, only to find it lidless, hard, and dried out in her toybox! Why not just make homemade for pennies?

    Thanks for the recipes! I linked to this article today.

    Danelle Ice / Homemaker Barbi

  15. I used to make this years ago when my children were small (15 years +) I added unsweetened koolaide – you don’t need to add the colouring as it is already in the koolaide and it makes it smell so great – the kids really loved it. I also suggest you store it in the frig. Unlike the store bought playdough the homemade version will go mouldy if left out for too long.
    Enjoy !!!

  16. what is cream of tartar or alum?i would love 2 try this but no idea what either of those things are


  1. […] weekend we got creative with homemade playdough, took a roadtrip and joined friends for an afternoon at StorybookLand, “camped out” in […]

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