All Women's Talk

7 of the Best Homemade Playdough Recipes for Play Time ...

By Jan

Did you have any idea there were actual playdough recipes? Who doesn’t love playdough? I’m going to be honest and say as far as the playdough you buy in the store, I don’t! Call me weird, but the smell really makes me a little queasy. It always has for some reason. After receiving homemade playdough from a friend of mine for my son, I knew we’d found playdough we could actually have in the house! Take your pick of one of these great playdough recipes.

1 Soft and Silky?

Here’s one of the first and probably easiest playdough recipes you’ll find. On a blog called KidsActivities, they have created playdough with two simple incredients: cornstarch and hair conditioner...

Use 1-1/4 cup hair conditioner and 2 cups of corn starch (maybe add 1 more heaping tablespoon). Knead them together until they are all mixed up and the consistency of dough. For colored dough, simply add food coloring.

2 Super Great Color

Some recipes do call for cooking the ingredients for playdough. This one from Domestic Superhero’s blog does have to be cooked, but promises extra bright colors.


1 cup flour
1 cup water
2 tsp. cream of tarter
1/3 cup salt
1 tbsp vegetable oil
food coloring

**The above will make you a large ball of playdough. I usually make it repeatedly for however many colors I want (so if you want 6 big balls, know that you will need 6 times the ingredients listed above, but you need to make them separately).

Mix together all the ingredients, except the food coloring, in a medium saucepan. Cook over low/medium heat, stirring. Once it begins to thicken, add the food coloring. Continue stirring until the mixture is much thicker and begins to gather around the spoon. Once the dough is not wet, remove and put onto wax paper or a plate to cool. After cooling (30 minutes) knead playdough for a few seconds.

3 Easy Recipe 1

This recipe is from Kiddin’ Around, and your children can actually help make this one although you’ll have to do the cooking. Store this dough in an airtight container. Once you’ve got a creation, simply let it air dry to save.


3 cups flour

1 5 Cups Salt

6 tsp. cream of tarter
3 tbsp. oil
3 cups water

Pour all ingredients into a large pot. Stir constantly over medium heat until a dough ball forms by pulling away from the sides. Knead dough until the texture matches play dough (1-2 minutes). Store in plastic container. Should last for at least 3 months.

4 Easy Recipe 2

With only 3 ingredients, this is another easy one. It is one that has to be cooked, so definitely supervise this one. Once it has cooled though, your kids can knead the dough until it’s smooth.


1 cup baking soda
1/2 cup corn starch
3/4 cup water

Have your child mix the baking soda and corn starch in a pot. Use hands to make sure all the lumps are broken up. Add water. The adult should put the pan on the stove over medium heat and stir constantly. As soon as the mixture gathers together, remove from the heat. When it cools, have your child knead it into a smooth dough. Don't overcook this dough or it will crumble.

5 Easy Recipe 3

This is another non-cook recipe that may not last quite as long as the cooked version but try kneading in glitter or food coloring to this one for some extra fun.


1/4 cup salt
1 cup flour
1/4 cup water

Have your child mix the flour and salt in a bowl then add water. Knead and squeeze the dough to make a clay consistency. You may need to add more water. Note: This dough doesn't last as long as the cooked recipes.

6 The Koolest!

This recipe is from Family Education web site. The smell from the Kool-aid used to color the dough is SO much better than the store-bought playdough. I’d have to say grape is my favorite!


1/2 cup salt
2 cups water
food coloring, tempera powder, or Kool-Aid powder for color
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 cups sifted flour
2 tablespoons alum

Combine salt and water in saucepan and boil until salt dissolves. Remove from heat and tint with food coloring, tempera powder, or Kool-Aid. Add oil, flour, and alum. Knead until smooth. This dough will last 2 months or longer.

7 Salty?

Not sure what the salt contributes to this recipe, but let’s go with it. This seems to turn out more like pastry dough. It’s only three ingredients and does have to be cooked, but the reviews were great. This is also from Family Education.


• 1 cup salt
• 1 cup water
• 1/2 cup flour plus additional flour
• saucepan

Mix salt, water, and flour in saucepan and cook over medium heat. Remove from heat when mixture is thick and rubbery. As the mixture cools, knead in enough flour to make the dough workable.

No matter which recipe you choose, I don’t think you can go wrong. My son’s playdough lasted quite a while, it worked great with cookie cutters, and he really had fun with it. I’m thinking of making a big batch and creating gift bags for my son’s birthday party favors. I can use zipper food bags, $1 store cookie cutters, and a gift bag with ribbon! What do you think?

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