Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Kool-Aid* Play Dough

I recently posted one of my favorite play dough recipes, glitter play dough, but I have to say that this recipe for "Kool-Aid" play dough is my current favorite. It smells wonderful and you don't need to add any food coloring since the color comes from the drink mix. I am calling it "Kool-Aid Play Dough" for simplicity sake, but I actually use generic store-brand drink mix packets to make our play dough since they are less expensive. This play dough is very easy to make, and it lasts for several weeks if kept in an airtight container. 

Homemade play dough also makes a great gift, especially if you add a recipe card and some inexpensive plastic cookie cutters. My latest method of including the recipe is to print it off (I first typed it to fit 3 per page in portrait page setting of Microsoft Word), trim it down, and then adhere it to the peanut butter jar with clear Con-tact paper. This also helps cover up that last little bit of sticky backing from the jar label that is tough to remove. I just found a four-pack of spring cookie cutters for $1 in the impulse-buy section of Target, so I purchased three packages to set aside for gift-giving. I have also found cookie cutters in six-packs at Dollar Tree, although not on recent trips. It's just something to keep in mind for future reference. Once you have them on hand, you can whip up a gift in just a few minutes time.

{Here are just 3 of the possible options: Pink Lemonade, Orange, and Grape. Note: The Pink Lemonade is not nearly as vivid as the other colors. Black Cherry also makes somewhat dull-colored play dough.}


  • ½ Cup salt                           
  • 1 Cup flour                        
  • 2 tsp. cream of tartar        
  • 1 pkg. Kool-Aid*                  
  • 1 Tbs. cooking oil               
  • 1 Cup water               *I use generic drink mix packets.*
  1. Mix dry ingredients. Add oil and water. Kids can help with this.
  2. Cook in a sauce pan on medium heat until a ball forms, stirring as needed.
  3. Set aside to cool, and then knead the play dough. Kids can help with this. Tip: Wax paper or a cutting board or place mat will protect your work surface from stains.
  4. Enjoy! Play dough will keep for several weeks in an airtight container. Tip: Cool Whip tubs, zippered baggies, and jars work well for this. My personal favorite are plastic peanut butter jars. Important Note about Homemade Play Dough: Although it is non-toxic, kids shouldn't eat it. It's very salty, so I'm not sure why they would want to, but it does happen. Tip: Personal experience has taught me to keep play dough away from pets as well. I can't tell you how many times our dog has eaten this and then gotten sick. It doesn't hurt her, of course, but it is a nuisance to have to clean up dog vomit while your kid is contentedly playing with his new batch of play dough. 

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