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Homemade Playdough Recipe

homemade playdough

I sat my boys down the other day with their playdough box, and less than five minutes later they were fussing and fighting. Why? Because the playdough has slowly been drying out, leaving them with only a small bit of dough for each of the three boys. Homemade playdough to the rescue! I told them to hang on for a few minutes, and I whipped up a batch of homemade playdough just like mom used to make. Back in the early ’80s. After it was done, they played with it for — I kid you not — 2 hours straight.

Homemade playdough was awesome back then, and it’s still awesome today. You don’t have to go to the store to get a great playdough – just go shopping in your cupboards and cook up a batch in minutes. Don’t be intimidated by the cooking process – it is super easy. The Cream of Tartar can be omitted if you don’t have it, so now you really have no excuse!

Cooked Playdough Recipe

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup salt
  • 2 Tablespoons oil
  • 1 Tablespoon cream of tartar
  • food coloring (add AFTER cooking)

Combine ingredients in a saucepan on the stove. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly. Mixture will thicken and become hard to stir. Stir it as long as you can, until most of the dough comes off the sides of the pan and forms a mass in the center of the pan. When it becomes dull-looking (not glossy), remove it from the heat.

You can let it cool for a few minutes, or you can start kneading it right away. It cools pretty quickly.

Divide playdough into two or four balls, and add food coloring to each ball. Fold food coloring inside of ball gently to avoid staining hands (or use gloves) and knead. Once food coloring is completely mixed into the ball, it won’t stain anymore. Another option is to put each ball in its own zip-top bag and squish it up inside the bag until it is mixed completely.

homemade playdough

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