Save Money and Make Your Own Homemade Play Dough (cooked method)

All kids love play dough, mine is no exception. There is no cheaper way than making your own. These lovely homemade dough keeps Ethan occupied for hours while I make dinner or bake. They are made from ‘non-toxic’ food ingredients and preserved with salt. Just keep the dough in air tight containers and they can lasts for months. For budding artists, you can use them as modelling clays. My little artist would make little figurines, leave them to dry and harden, then paint the harden dough afters. They are loads of fun.

This recipe involves a little cooking. We prefer the cooked to the non cooked play dough as the cooked version has a better texture.  Have your little one make some with you and you can have limitless fun with your homemade play dough. As the play dough may smell like food, just make sure that your pets don’t gobble them up. Although they are not toxic it contains loads of salt, it will make your pets ill from salt imbalance. Having said that, Ethan had a bite of our homemade playdough, spat it out and asked for a glass of water, LOL, the little monkey!

Try making your own paly dough and save some money. Every penny counts and there is definately no lack of fun factor . Enjoy!


  • 2 cups of flour
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 cup of salt
  • 2 tablespoon of vegetable oil
  • 1 table spoon of cream of tartar (this helps to make the dough more elastic, as cream of tartar changes the acidity of the dough)
  • Food colouring


Mix all the dry ingredients in a pan. add one cup of cold water and make into a paste to ensure there are no lumps, slowly add the rest of the water then oil. Heat the mixture in low heat stirring constantly to prevent burning. The paste will thicken into a dough. Leave to cool and your play dough is ready. Remember to store in an airtight container or the play dough will harden.

You can add food colouring into the water before you cook the dough or like me, you can make the dough first, divide the dough into a few portions whilst it is warm and add a different colour to each portion of dough. If you are adding the food colouring after the dough is cook, you will need to knead the colour into the dough.

With this latter method, you only have to make/cook one batch of dough whereas the former method you will only get one colour for each cooked batch.

Be careful, concentrated food colouring may stain.

p/s for the TangZhong addicts, this homemade play dough shares similar elastic properties as our beloved water roux started for bread.