Play Dough Recipe

DIY Play Dough Recipe

A hundred years ago, when my kids were in a neighborhood Pre-school, their teacher, Miss Pam, gave me this recipe for this play dough. I have made a lot of play dough recipes in my life, but this one is the best play-dough recipe around.  It stays soft for weeks or even months as long as you keep it in an airtight container.

My daughter and her 3 kids were visiting last week while her husband was out of town. Part of the fun with this dough was having the kids help to make it.  The boys love to make crafts.  It really brought out their imaginations.  We made snakes (which we wound up into lollipops and put on a popsicle stick) and space ships and all kinds of other fun boy stuff.

Since they got to help measure the ingredients, it was  kind of educational too.

I have some alphabet & number dough stampers that I bought years ago.  Amazon has a set that is similar.  This makes learning letters and numbers fun!

Kids can play with this dough for hours given the proper tools!

Here’s how to make the dough:

Have the kids help to measure and stir together the dry ingredients into a bowl, then set aside.

2 1/2 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
1 t. alum (in the grocery aisle by the spices)

In a saucepan, bring to a boil:

3 T. oil
2 c. water

Pour into the dry ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon, making
sure to incorporate all of the dry ingredients.  When cool enough to
handle, knead until smooth.  Store in ziploc bags or an
airtight container.  Food coloring can be added while kneading.


(My daughters and I have a new website where I have featured this
recipe.  Hop over to visit at us at

11 thoughts on “DIY Play Dough Recipe

    1. grandmabee Post author

      I grew up with t. (lower case letter) meaning teaspoon and T. (upper case letter) meaning tablespoon. Sorry I wasn’t very clear…

  1. Linda

    Love this stuff. Made it for my kids. You can also put a pack of Koolaid in it, more colorful and smells great. lol

  2. Patty

    I’ve been looking for this recipe. I made it several years ago and that batch lasted me for months and months as I kept it sealed and stored in the refrigerator.

    I also use T. for Tablespoon and t. for teaspoon. When did it change?

  3. Jelli

    This looks like fun! I’ve recently made a batch of playdough that calls for cream of tarter rather than alum. I assume, since the rest of the ingredients are the same that these two ingredients must serve as a type of stabilizer or preservative. Love the creative photo you took for the pinnable image. Fun! Pinned.

  4. Donna

    I’ve used this recipe for years and it is great!
    One thing I do different is add food coloring to the oil and water while it’s cooking. Kids love it!

  5. Babs

    Thank you for this recipe… My great grandchildren and I will have fun together.. Hopefully I have some alum in my cupboard… if not Iwill dash out and get some.
    .When I (82)was a young girl my mother used this recipe to clean wallpaper..:) .It worked…


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