The Perfect Play Dough Recipe

Tucked in the back of my pantry,  I have a recipe box from my mom’s kitchen.  So many signature dishes from my childhood written in her handwriting.  The box with a late 70’s floral design that I don’t doubt was a wedding gift.  So many treasures in that little box of love.  One especially golden recipe that I use on special days, rainy days, hot days, and days when we just need SOMETHING to make it through the afternoon hump until Daddy comes home…my mom’s homemade play dough.  She was a pre-school teacher, and I’m sure used this with her kids.  She FOR SURE used it at home, because the smell ya’ll…..  I can close my eyes and see myself at our Apollo Dr. kitchen table.

Sooo last week, when our sweet neighborhood prepped for the threat of ANOTHER storm by cancelling camp, swimming lessons, and life in general, we hunkered down for The Great Drizzle of 2015 Tropical Storm Bill, and I made play dough with my crew.   5 little ingredients and a mix master are all you need!

Perfect Play Dough Recipe

In a bowl, combine 2 cups of flour and 1/2 cup of salt.  Turn on your mixer and slowly add in 1/2 cup of water and 1/4 cup of vegetable oil.  Then squeeze in a few drops of food coloring.  Let it mix on low until the color is spread throughout your mixture.  Don’t be sad when the mixture seems bally or pellet like!  Scoop it up into your hands and knead the mixture together until smooth.

homemade play doh steps

In the photos above, you can see {1} the lumpy mixture, {2} the smooth kneaded balls of dough, {3} playtime – grab crafty items, rolling pins, hammers, cookie cutters, or anything else you can think of that will get your little ones pumped to play , and {4} our purple dough ready for storage. This stuff will keep for weeks in the fridge.

My little people are 5 and 2 and all three were engaged.  Let your kids pick the colors they want to make and then have them run around the house choosing “tools” to use while they play.  This day we even ended up with cars on the table and rolled out all different sizes of tire tracks.   Cars, googly eyes, and scissors for the win! Fine motor skill heaven ya’ll!

Have you ever made your own? Is your recipe similar to this one? Tell me all about it too!


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Jessica and Sarah are tandem bloggers and self-dubbed ‘sister-cousins’ because sometimes the lines get blurred, and they wouldn’t have it any other way. Both New Orleans natives, these cousins transplanted to Houston after Hurricane Katrina and have never looked back. Jessica is the mother of twin girls, Laine and Olivia {March 2010}, and a sweet and curious one year old boy, Owen {Jan 2013}. Sarah is mom to Maggie {Aug 2011}, who keeps her on her toes, and the most adorable little brother, Jack {Nov 2013}! By day, Jessica is a stay at home mom, and Sarah works on the financial and managerial end of the healthcare industry. By naps, lunch breaks, and nights, they run an adorable children’s clothing company called The Little Crane Smocked Shoppe. Follow these two, their families, and their adventures in small business ownership on their blog…and don’t forget to show them some love at their shop too!


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