Yesterday the children wanted to play with play dough. We had run out – so we made some!
I pulled out my copy of Miserly Moms: Living on One Income in a Two-Income Economy. Many years ago, I experimented with different play dough recipes. After extensive testing, this book has the recipe I’ve used for years, with little to no variation.
Homemade Play Dough
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup salt
4 tsp cream of tartar
2 cups water with food coloring
2 T. oil
Mix together in a pan (non-stick is better). Stir with a whisk to get all the lumps out, then use a spoon. Cook over medium heat until it forms a hard ball. As it becomes half-cooked, the dough is harder to mix. Keep stirring until all parts are hardened. Knead when warm for a smoother consistency.
- Add glitter for glitter dough. Add when cooking is finished and you are kneading dough.
- Use unsweetened drink mix for the coloring. It also adds fragrance. Use 1-2 packs for each recipe.
- Consider using a shower curtain to cover the table/floor since this playdough does contain oil. (Thanks to my first commenter!)
What I actually did:
- I doubled the recipe, except for the cream of tartar – I only had enough for 4 tsp.
- I did not use food coloring in the water. I pulled out my paste food coloring and added “toothpick-fulls” of it after I kneaded the dough and it was a little cooler.
This recipe does last a long time – I’ve kept it for months in a ziploc baggie and had no problems if it was played with regularly. If it gets sticky, just use my children’s favorite remedy – let them add more flour. (Hint: it doesn’t even spoil if one of the children mistakenly adds freshly ground whole wheat flour!)