Thursday, October 3, 2013

naturally-colored play dough

After seeing the gorgeous, autumn-themed play dough over at Sixtine et Victoire (Seriously!  Play dough can be gorgeous - check it out.), I was inspired to make some with Elise. Although it was always one of the most popular activities in my classroom, I realized that Elise had Never. Played. With. Play. Dough.  


Not only is play dough endlessly fun, it's also good for you!  I couldn't believe I'd been depriving Elise for so long.  

Here's a quick list of the benefits of playing with play dough:
  • builds fine motor strength
  • allows for open ended play
  • emotionally therapeutic
Read more about the benefits of play dough and discover some exciting variations at The Imagination Tree.  

Naturally-Colored Play Dough Recipe:

Over high heat, stir 2 cups water and 1 cup salt until salt is mostly dissolved and water is boiling.

To make yellow play dough, mix 1 cup flour, 1 tablespoon cream of tartar, and 1 tablespoon turmeric in a bowl.  Combine dry ingredients with 1 cup of the hot water and salt mixture and 1 tablespoon vegetable oil.  After it's cooled slightly, knead until a smooth dough is formed.  If dough seems too wet, add more flour; if it seems too dry, add more oil.

To make brown play dough, follow the same steps, replacing the turmeric with 1 tablespoon cocoa powder.    

Keep play dough stored in an airtight container between use, and it should last for a long time - unless your little one is like Elise and eats it all!  Ha, ha!  No, Elise didn't eat it all, but I was surprised at how much she actually put in her mouth considering it's so salty.


  1. Oh, the Playdouths look very appetizing! ;) I have to try this also! Thank you for this post! :)

    1. Yes, the natural colors of cocoa and turmeric are perfect for little ones who may try a taste (or two)!

  2. Good job Mama - love the bright yellow of turmeric! I have been thinking of handing out favors at Sixtine's birthday and had so much fun making handmade play dough that I am thinking of making a batch for our little guests.

    1. Play dough would be a perfect party favor - what a good idea!


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