Growing up, I loved playdough. I loved the way it felt and smelled (and yes, even tasted!). I loved to build things with it, and the ability to destroy your creation and start over again. But when I was growing up, my parents always bought the kind in the yellow containers. So when I discovered that you could make your own playdough at home, and how easy it was, my mind was officially blown.
Ever since my daughter was born then, I have been looking forward to making playdough with her and spending the afternoon creating things with it. She is only 18 months old though, and I knew, being the healthy eater that she is, that she would probably try to consume it. That’s why it was incredibly important to me to make edible playdough. Little did I know, though, that I was going to end up making the BEST homemade playdough out there! It’s not only edible, but non-toxic, using 99% real food ingredients, and it has aromatherapy benefits thanks to the use of essential oils. Yeah, it has all of that going for it.
Full disclosure here: even though I ended up creating the best playdough ever, our playdough date was a fail. Just as I suspected, my daughter tried (repeatedly) to eat the playdough. Every time she put it near her mouth, I would say, “No eat. Play,” and then demonstrate kneading it or rolling it into a ball. And she would just look at me like I was nuts. In hindsight, I think it was because my husband and I have been trying very hard to get her to not play with her food, and here I was basically telling her to do the opposite. No wonder she probably thought I was crazy!
So it’ll be a while before J and I make playdough again; I need to wait until she is a little bit older. But I’m all set with the recipe; it’s the best! And I am excited to share it with you!
Here is the cast of characters. Does anyone else visit The Pioneer Woman? Ree always refers to the ingredients as the cast of characters. I have no idea why, but I think that’s adorable. So, here’s the cast:
You will need:
- white flour – 1 cup
- salt – 2 tbsp
- cream of tartar – 2 tbsp
- Jello – 1 3oz pack
You will also need 1 c. warm water and 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil which I forgot to take a picture of. Wow! I am just like Ree Drummond! She always seems to be forgetting an ingredient too.
Please note that the gelatin is what makes this really special and unlike other jello playdough recipes. Jell-O Simply Good is a brand-new product that free from artificial flavors and dyes.
Here’s a look at the ingredients: cane sugar, gelatin, dried strawberry juice, adipic acid (for tartness), contains less than 1% of disodium phosphate (controls acidity), sodium citrate (controls acidity), natural flavor, fumaric acid (for tartness), oleoresin turmeric and vegetable juice (for color).
Got your Jell-O Simply Good ? Great, let’s get started! Click through for full instructions.
Combine all of the ingredients together in a saucepan. Don’t forget the water and oil. Ha, ha!
Cook over medium heat, stirring continuously until it thickens into a ball of dough. Keep in mind that this takes a while. Just keep stirring.
Once it has cooled, which takes about twenty minutes, place the ball of dough on a lightly floured surface and begin to knead. The goal is to knead the dough enough so that it is no longer sticky. You may need to carefully add very tiny amounts of flour to your dough to achieve the desired texture.
Once the dough feels right, it’s time to add your essential oil. Basil complements strawberry, so that’s what I used. 4-5 drops are plenty for this amount of dough.
Currently, Jell-O Simply Good comes in a limited amount of flavors. Here are my suggestions for essential oil pairings, but of course, you can do whatever your heart desires:
Strawberry gelatin + Basil essential oil
Orange Tangerine gelatin + Clove essential oil (Thieves or OnGuard would be great too for an immune-boosting playdough. Hello, great sick day activity!)
Pineapple Orange gelatin + Peppermint essential oil
Mixed Berry gelatin + Rosemary essential oil
Raspberry Lemonade gelatin + Lavender essential oil
Mango Passionfruit gelatin + Ginger essential oil
And voila! Once you add your essential oil and knead it a couple of times to combine, you are ready to get to work playing and building.
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