How to Make Play-Doh for Kids

Written by kelly sundstrom | 13/05/2017
How to Make Play-Doh for Kids
You can make homemade Play-Doh in a rainbow of colours. (colourful clay image by Karin Lau from

Children love to create sculptures out of Play-Doh, but because it is not oil-based, it has a tendency to dry out easily. Since pre-made cans of Play-Doh brand dough can be costly when purchased in larger amounts, many may opt for non-drying, oil-based clay. Unfortunately, oil-based clays are often petroleum-based and more toxic than Play-Doh. Luckily, play dough, similar to the brand-name product, can be created very easily at home, and can be made in larger batches to ensure that your children will have enough play dough to last them through many sculptures.

How to Make Play-Doh for Kids
Handmade play-doh can be created by even the littlest children. (salt image by Andrey Rakhmatullin from

Combine 2 cups of flour and 1 cup of salt in a large bowl. Use a spoon to mix the two ingredients together thoroughly. Gradually drizzle in 1 cup of water, and use your fingers to mix the substances together well. This is an opportunity for little children to help out in the process of making the dough. Continue to mix the substances with your hands until the mixture becomes elastic and smooth.

How to Make Play-Doh for Kids
Kneading the play dough mixes the colours more thoroughly. (coloured clays image by Joe Houghton from

Lay out sheets of newspaper on a flat surface, such as a kitchen table or counter top. Place the dough onto the newspaper. Put on rubber gloves to protect your hands, and put rubber gloves onto any child that will be working the play dough. Press in the middle of the dough, and add 10 drops of your favourite colour of food colouring. Squeeze the play dough between your fingers to completely incorporate the food colouring into the dough. Form the play dough into a ball. Wrap the dough ball in cling film until use.

How to Make Play-Doh for Kids
Make handmade play-doh in a variety of colours. (colourful clay image by Karin Lau from

To make more colours, repeat the entire process, making sure to combine two parts flour, one part salt, and one part water. Incorporate 10 drops of a different colour of food colouring into the dough. This process can be used to create the entire rainbow of play dough colours. Homemade play dough will dry if left out in the air, so make sure to always wrap it in cling film before and after use.

Things you need

  • Flour
  • Salt
  • Water
  • Food colouring
  • Bowl
  • Rubber gloves
  • Newspaper
  • Cling film

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