As a mom to 2 young boys (although one is going into kindergarten soon) and a preschool teacher I love play dough. I love that it helps develop fine motor skills, imagination, and it is just fun to squish. So here is my recipe with a little extra easy step to make it really smooth (that my friend and fellow preschool teacher taught me).
Play dough Recipe
1 1/2 cup salt
3 cups warm water
3 cups flour
6 teaspoons cream of tarter
3 tablespoons oil
food coloring (optional)
essential oil or glitter (optional add ins)
1. In a large mixing bowl add salt and warm water. Stir to dissolve some of the salt (not all will dissolve now and that is okay)
2. Add in the rest of the ingredients and stir.
3. Here is the "magic" step! Use a hand mixer and mix all of the ingredients in the bowl for about a minute.
4. Add in food coloring (and essential oil/glitter). Mix again with hand mixer.
5. Transfer to pot and place on the stove top and cook on medium heat. You need to stir it constantly and when if forms a ball it is finished (probably 3-5 minutes on the stove)
6. Let cool on tin foil for a few minutes. I usually store in a Ziploc bag.
7. Play and create!
If you use essential oil you will need to use a lot. You can always add more while it is cooking, but I had to use way more than I thought.
Also if you want more than one color add the food coloring after it is cooked.
Finally, to make the color a surprise for the kiddos do not add food coloring before cooking. Once it is cooked divide into 3 balls (or however many colors you want) and add food coloring in the middle and have the kids mush and mix it in their hand to find out what color it will be.