Quick and Easy No-Cook Playdough Recipe

May 16, 2013

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Play dough is a staple material for play at our house and as we use it very often, it's much more economical to make it ourselves then to buy it. 

We have tried many, many different play dough recipes over the years but our favourite, and the one we always came back to was this no-cook recipe from the Imagination Tree. They have a secret ingredient they add for extra shine so be sure to check it out. We've modified the method slightly over time to make it so super easy that the kids could make it with you.

With playdough this soft, silky, quick and easy to make, you'll never need to buy playdough again.



Ingredients:
  • 2 cups of plain flour
  • ½ cup salt
  • 2 tbsps Cream of Tartar
  • 1½ cups of boiling water
  • 2 tbsps oil (I use vegetable)
  • Food Colouring (optional) 




Method:
  • Add your flour, salt and Cream of Tartar to a bowl



  • Add your oil, colouring (optional) and boiling water in a jug and then pour into your dry ingredients
You will need to work quickly for this bit as you want to add the water while it is boiling hot. Please assist children with boiling water and maintain constant supervision.


  • Stir all the ingredients until they all come together 


  • When it is mostly all combined and looks similar to the above picture, tip it onto your bench for some good kneading.
You can lightly flour your bench to prevent the dough from sticking



  • We've found that the more you knead the dough the smoother and silkier it becomes.
If your dough is too sticky, just add and knead in more flour until it is a smooth consistency.




  • Time to play! Store your playdough in a zip lock bag or air tight container to get months and months of use out of it.

Details at a glance:

Ingredients:
  • 2 cups of plain flour
  • ½ cup salt
  • 2 tbsps Cream of Tartar
  • 1½ cups of boiling water
  • 2 tbsps oil (I use vegetable)
  • Food Colouring (optional) 

Method:
  • Combine dry ingredients in a bowl
  • Combine wet ingredients and add to dry ingredients
  • Stir together well
  • Knead vigorously
  • Play


Handy Tips:

- Too wet/sticky? Add more flour. Too dry/not coming together well? Add more water. Play with the recipe slightly until it works perfectly for you.

- We've found the more you knead the dough, the better it goes.

- As this recipe uses boiling water, please supervise children at all times.

- If you allow your water to cool before adding it, your playdough will not work properly as it will not be hot enough to dissolve the salt or bring all the ingredients together properly. We get all our other ingredients ready and then we add our wet ingredients as soon as the kettle is boiled so that it is still nice and hot.

- For an added sensory experience try adding different spices, essences, colours and glitter to your play dough. Each new batch can be something different and fun! Experiment and enjoy!




Here are some of the fun ways we like to play with our playdough
(Click on the pictures to go to the post)
        playdough activity, open ended, sensory activity  toddler, kids, activities for kids, fine motor skills, playdoh, pipe cleaners  play dough, kids activity, science 




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17 comments:

  1. It looks wonderful and we'll surely try it, thank you for sharing the magic tricks! :)
    Is it just to play and have fun with or are the objects similar to the ones made with clay?
    We've tried the simple dough&salt recipe and the results are good to keep when dry (can be painted and varnished, etc).
    Can they be dried in the oven perhaps?

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    Replies
    1. Thanks giggles. We've not used this as a clay. We just use it as a dough and don't keep the finished products. If you have a look on my "Recipes for Play" pinterest board you will see some great homemade recipes for clay that you can bake and keep the hardened product. I'd recommend using them for that purpose instead. :)

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    2. Thank you for pointing me in the right direction, Deborah! :)

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  2. We love our playdough here too and use a similar recipe to yours although sometimes I still like to make my microwave recipe as it has a little different texture! Sweet pics of Maddie...Mummy's helper!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've actually never used a microwave method before (I always seem to stick with what I know works) but I imagine they'd be just as quick and easy. Will have to give it a go and feel the difference some time.

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  3. Love the pictures! I also love the Imagination Tree's play dough recipe. It seems to be the one my son and I always come back to.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Mary Catherine. I think you just need a good base recipe and then over time, the more you make it and play around with it you can get it so that it works perfectly for you everytime. We feel like we've honed this one to perfection haha but we've not used glycerine in ours before like the Imagination Tree and I keep meaning to get some.

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  4. I've been staying away from trying playdough since there were so many variations but we had GREAT luck the first time using this recipe! Thanks! In the second batch I used a packet of strawberry jello and it colored the playdough well and gave it a great scent. It is even a bit smoother than the one made with just foodcoloring. We love it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Lily. Great to know you had success with it and love the idea of the jello.

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    2. I thought about trying Kool-Aide to color and scent this playdough recipe.

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  5. This was great! My 2 year old and 10 month old LOVED playing with this dough! (It was both of their first time playing with any playdough type substance and my first time making it ever!) I think this will be our go to when we need something quick and easy to play with!

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  6. Does this need to be refrigerated to keep fresh?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sorry that I missed this question. No, it doesn't need to be refrigerated. Just stored in an air tight container or air tight zip lock bag when not in use.

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  7. HI :) Thank you so much, it was very useful, I just have a couple of questions, How long does this play dough last? and How much would you spend? :)

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thank you for your ideas they are GREAT!!!! The label for clay caterpillar can you make them, so people like me can downloads them

    ReplyDelete
  9. Thank you for your ideas they are GREAT!!!! The label for clay caterpillar can you make them, so people like me can downloads them

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for taking the time to comment! I love reading them all.