Make your Own Playdough. Sustainable Living with Kids.

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homemade playdough salt dough

homemade playdough salt dough

If I had a £1 for every pound of playdough I’ve made over the years, I’d be a rich woman. Homemade playdough is cheap and sustainable, can be used again and again when stored in the fridge. It reduces the need for plastic packaging and transportation and is great fun to play with. As I write this, in early 2021, the shops are shut due to the pandemic. Parents and grandparents looking for affordable ways to entertain the kids, so I thought it timely to share the playdough recipe with you.

We made playdough for our three children as they grew up living remotely in the North Pennines back in the early nineties. We lived miles from the nearest town and didn’t have money for toys apart from Christmas and birthdays, so homemade playdough was a firm favourite. It is also known as salt dough, and uncoloured, can be baked in the oven then painted. We’ve made Christmas tree decorations this way to give as presents.

homemade playdough salt dough

homemade playdough salt dough

Now our granddaughter Daisy is coming to play while her mummy gets some rest, we are yet again making playdough. It keeps well in the fridge in a recycled plastic bag and is a cheap plaything. Diasy loves making ‘cookies’ and ‘gingerbread people’ using her cutters, but also likes to make tracks through it with a tractor, or footprints using farm animals. We make pizzas, sausages and chips and pies. Daisy has just turned three, and her playdough keeps her happy for ages.






homemade playdough salt dough

homemade playdough salt dough

Here’s the recipe:

Salt dough Playdough

1 cup plain flour

½ cup salt

2 tsp cream of tartar

1 tbsp vegetable oil

1 cup water

Food colouring.

homemade playdough salt dough

homemade playdough salt dough

Whilst these are American cup measures, any cup can be used! It’s the ratio of quantities that is important.

Mix all the dry ingredients – flour, salt and cream of tartar

Whisk in the oil, water and food colouring.

Heat gently in a saucepan on a low heat, stirring constantly. As if by magic, you will have playdough in a matter of minutes!

Knead gently for a minute once cool. Store in the fridge in a recycled plastic bag when not in use and it will keep for weeks if not months.

Hours of fun!



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You might enjoy some of the writing and ideas in other sections of this website, as we look towards leading more sustainable lives by growing our own food and creating dishes in line with seasonal eating, or head to our handy ‘Month by Month’ guides to find out what we have been doing here at Bridge Cottage as the months go by:


Many thanks for reading.

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Tim & Sue in the Bridge Cottage Way garden

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