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How to Make Homemade Playdough (No Cream of Tartar or Cooking)

If you desperately need a fun activity for the kids but you don’t want to spend a lot of time or money buying toys, then you need this easy homemade playdough recipe! It costs less than $1 to make and lasts for a long time!

Our homemade playdough is quick and easy to make. You just need 5 ingredients and 5 minutes of time to make a batch of play dough that will keep kids entertained for hours!

We consider this the best playdough recipe because it does not need cooking and does not use cream of tartar, which is something that not everybody has in their pantry.

This playdough recipe is perfect for rainy days when the kids are stuck indoors. They will have so much fun making balls out of the dough, squishing it between their fingers, and using cookie cutters to cut out shapes.

You should have all the ingredients on hand for this simple recipe! Just start mixing this non-toxic playdough recipe for fun!

The Best Homemade Playdough Recipe

Prep Time: 5 Minutes


  • 1 Cup Flour
  • ½ Cup Salt
  • ½ Cup Water
  • 2 tsp Vegetable Oil (or any oil used for cooking)
  • ½ tsp Food Coloring (gel food coloring works best)


Mix together the salt and flour in a mixing bowl.

Add the food coloring to the water and mix them well.

Then add the colored mixture to the flour mixture, along with the oil.

Stir together the ingredients. We suggest using your hands rather than a spoon! Keep mixing, folding, and kneading the dough until it reaches playdough consistency!

You will want to repeat these steps for each color of playdough that you make.

Helpful Tips

  • If the dough feels a little sticky or tacky, just sprinkle on a teaspoon more flour into the mixture until the desired consistency is reached.
  • Mixing the food coloring in the water helps to really even the color out in the dough and speeds up the mixing process. Otherwise, it can take up to four times as long to knead the dough and get the color evenly spread.
  • Gel food coloring gives the playdough a more vibrant color.
  • Store this dough in Ziploc baggies, Stasher bags or containers with airtight lids. 
  • After one night of storage, our playdough got a little sticky. However, after the first night, it seemed to be fine.
  • If stored correctly, this playdough will last a long time.
  • Any oil is fine to use, including coconut oil or avocado oil.


There are several ways of customizing this DIY playdough, including:

  • Add essential oils for fragrance
  • Stir in glitter for glitter playdough
  • Do not use food coloring for a natural and neutral playdough
  • Use natural food colorings to avoid chemicals in the playdough

Is This Playdough Edible?

While this playdough is made from pantry ingredients, it is not an edible playdough. This play dough won’t taste good, but it is safe for kids to play with.

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You may also like our easy honey slime recipe.