How to Make Playdough (Play-doh)

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Playdough (aka Play-doh) is easy to make at home, and fun for kids of all ages.  Here's how to make your own non-toxic toy with custom colors and fragrances.

This is the classic method that involves a bit of cooking on the stovetop - I prefer it because cooked playdough has a better texture than uncooked varieties.  If you want the kids to be able to do it all themselves, try this uncooked playdough recipe.

Warning:  Keep away from dogs and other pets.  Playdough smells like people food but contains lots of salt, and a hungry dog can eat enough to cause a dangerous salt imbalance.

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Step 1: Ingredients

Playdough is a classic childhood toy everyone can have fun with, and it's so easy to make at home you'll never buy that stinky store variety again.

Basic ingredient ratios:
2 cups flour
2 cups warm water
1 cup salt
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1 Tablespoon cream of tartar (optional for improved elasticity)

food coloring (liquid, powder, or unsweetened drink mix)
scented oils

Step 2: Mix and heat

Mix all of the ingredients together, and stir over low heat. The dough will begin to thicken until it resembles mashed potatoes.

When the dough pulls away from the sides and clumps in the center, as shown below, remove the pan from heat and allow the dough to cool enough to handle.

IMPORTANT NOTE: if your playdough is still sticky, you simply need to cook it longer!
Keep stirring and cooking until the dough is dry and feels like playdough.
I've gotten many comments asking about sticky dough, so please just keep cooking a bit longer and it will work!

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vhata6 years ago
I used this recipe and mine turned out great! check it out...
vhata vhata6 years ago
Here is a pic...
LorrenS vhata18 days ago

Wow Cool NOOOOOOT playdough is stupid

playdough is for kids lorren so u should if you think it's so stupid why did you read it. You shouldn't be so rude !!

that's mean and rude.

bopsomops vhata5 months ago



u are wierd

dsaavedra6 years ago
cool! i made a monster :)
playdo monster.jpg
heres another:
playdoh face 001.jpg

(or whatever the small thing is)

yeah eat it


it looks like a head a eating a rabbit, just like Bambi! except even more bad I mean who would eat a small hare???!!!
yah!! i closed up on it and it looks like a buny

it is a bunny

awesome! and freaky at the same time. but still AWESOME!

your monster is skux as dude

have great news!

This posting has won today's "I Made It" Challenge. For winning you will receive a 3 month pro membership!

Thanks for using instructables!
cool animals
canida (author)  dsaavedra6 years ago
pwnage! i like that! its godzilla!!!!!!!!!! aaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!
I used neon food coloring. The Playdough turned out great!

WOW! that play dough looks so shiny and perfect

no it doesn't! (me)

In my (almost 2 year old) sons stocking for Christmas this year he received a package of cream of tartar and a box of neon liquid food coloring. When he unwrapped it, he looked at me like... umm ok? I then tried to explain to him that I was going to make playdough with him. He had no idea what I was talking about. So thankfully this weekend I was able to make it for him using this recipe, It turned out great and he loves it! He enjoyed helping me too. This process is not messy at all! Thanks for the memories!
MirandaL23 days ago

Lol I had my heat up too high and burnt it! It stinks SO BAD right now, but the play doh turned out optimal. I didn't even use cream of tartar and it is just like the kind you buy at the store!

AsiaP28 days ago

Is there anything I can substitute for the cream of tartar? It's not easily available in my country.

At what temp and for how long do you bake it?

davidm61 month ago

so how long do i bake it and at what temp to harden the dough?

deannagove1 month ago

how long dose the home made play doue last?

that's a cool recipe

dumb question but do you add the food coloring along with everything else?

joel43 months ago

mameshiba bean is a sluuuuuuuuuuuuuuuug

mameshiba bean

hhogue3 months ago

can you make this without cream of tartar

Tjmack3rd4 months ago

Good Stuff!

barnum454 months ago

I got an A in class for this

NiCaam1 year ago
I have to admit I love the smell of store bought play-dough. Just brings back childhood memories, but I love that I can make this with the kids at home. We make slime all the time, and this would be a great addition. Thanks.
bopsomops NiCaam5 months ago


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