Simple, Creative Entertainment in dough form


Home-made Salt Play Dough

We’ve never really been fans of commercial clay products.  They get mushed into carpet and turn to cement. But I have great memories of playing with them as a kid and I want my Little H to have those memories as well.

I know she’s only two, and sculpting is a bit beyond her capabilites right now but she had a blast playing with this home made play dough.  In line with keeping things simple, my goal this week,  I only made one color (mostly because I only had red coloring in the cupboard!) But really, she didn’t care that there was only one color and she didn’t care that I used some whole wheat flour because I ran out of white and she didn’t care that it didn’t smell like a commercial product.  She loved it and it was dirt cheap to make too.

This dough is non-toxic but there is enough salt in it to make a little person ill so don’t let them mow down on it (not that they really would, it tastes horrible!)

Here’s the recipe:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup table salt
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch and
  • 1 1/2 cup water
  • Food coloring

Mix salt, starch and most of the flour (keep out 1/4 cup or so) and add all the water.  Knead it with your hands and gauge the texture of the dough.  You want it dry enough that it doesn’t stick to your hands but wet enough so that you can roll it and mold it without it cracking.  If your dough is too wet, add the remaining flour until it’s just right.  Once you’re satisfied with the texture, add in some drops of food coloring and knead through.

The dough will stay good in your fridge for several weeks as long as it’s wrapped in plastic.  You can also mold it and let it dry out on your counter (it takes a couple of weeks) if you’ve made something you want to keep long term.


We used a ring from her sippy cup, the garlic press, a rolling pin and a plastic knife for manipulating the dough.  She loved printing circles into the surface and using the knife to score it.  Experiment with different objects in your house!



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