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Easy Gluten-Free Play Dough Recipe

Posted on Apr 8, 2017 by in Around The House, kid's craft

Easter Eggs filled with gluten-free play dough

 Easy Gluten-Free Play Doughgluten-free play dough

This is an amazingly simple recipe to make your own, easy gluten-free play dough. In my opinion, it is easier to make play dough than to drive to the store and buy it. I enjoy knowing the ingredients and that it is allergy friendly. Just in case they want to share with friends. Years ago I was unaware that original play dough even had gluten in it. At the time I was the MOPS childcare leader and we had friends with a severe gluten allergy. I desired a healthy environment for all of our kids.  There needed to be a craft/activity that they could all play together that was safe and fun.  I had never before made gluten-free play dough. Neither did I know that it was a thing. Therefore, the experimenting began. Turns out, it’s super simple to make this stuff and well worth the effort. Personally, I think it is therapeutic to make.

Why all the candy?

easter egg filled with play doughFor a few years now my husband and I have decided to fill our boy’s eggs with alternative items. A few examples are coins, easy gluten-free play dough, coupons (date with Dad/Mom, family game night, dinner out, etc) and small toys. Some of the eggs might contain a couple of dye-free jelly beans or chocolate candies, but not the majority. Please tell me that I am not the only Mom out there that dreads Easter Egg hunts because of the unnecessary haul of cheap candy that comes with them? Don’t get me wrong, I love watching my boys chase after eggs, searching high and low to find as many as they can. It has been a tradition for as long as they could walk. I’m all for Easter Egg hunts, but I am not for the crummy candy that exists within the eggs. By the time each egg has been opened it looks like Halloween in our living room. Over half of it used to be immediately taken away because it was a choking hazard, gum, or melted. So, instead of investing in a dentist, we are choosing to invest in more family time and their piggy banks.


eggs filled with gluten -free play dough

Play Dough is good for Sensory Development

This time of year the weather can be so unpredictable. It’s too cold to play outdoors one day, raining the next and sometimes it snows. Kids need a way to play and expel energy that is healthy and beneficial. Staying inside, unable to run around and burn excess energy off can lead to hyperactivity and mood problems. Play dough is a way for them to use their hands to create, use their imagination and get some energy out. This easy gluten-free play dough is what a stress ball is for us. Children love to touch everything, squish things, smash things and break things. (Hopefully, my kids aren’t the only ones that do those things.) Anyhow, enter play dough to rescue you and your kiddos from weather-related boredom.  If you think your kids might be too old for play dough give them a challenge. Perhaps you could ask them to mold their favorite character, or animal, etc. Everyone can benefit from getting their hands a little dirty and entertaining their senses.


Year Round fun

This easy gluten-free play dough can be made any time of the year. It makes great Christmas stocking stuffers, birthday party favors and more. If you have never made play dough before you are in for a treat. Additionally, it’s a creative way to have your kids help out in the kitchen. You can even use this recipe as a science lesson if your kids are into that sort of thing. Mine are always up for a fun science experiment. Try this soon or Pin it for later. Either way, you will revisit this recipe over and over again. Enjoy!




An easy gluten-free play dough recipe

Cook Time:3 min
Prep Time:3 min
Total Time:10 min
Yield:1 large ball
* 1/2 cup of white or brown rice flour ( I used brown rice)
* 1/2 cup cornstarch
* 1/2 cup of salt ( use table salt, not your expensive Himalayan)
* 2 teaspoons cream of tartar
* 1 cup of water
* 1 teaspoon of oil (olive, avocado, canola, sunflower, etc. DON'T use coconut or your play dough may harden)
* all natural food coloring as needed
1. Pour all ingredients into a medium sized saucepan. Turn heat to low temperature and stir everything together. Keep your eye on the dough at all times, stirring several times. The whole process will only take 3-5 minutes. Once the dough begins to come together and becomes more like a dough stir continuously until it forms a ball. Take off the heat immediately. Do not over cook or your play dough will become crusty and tough.

2. Take the dough out of the pan and separate into balls if you desire to make more than one color. Flatten the balls and make a small well. Place food coloring in the well and pull the dough up over the well and knead until the desired color is reached. Wear gloves if you have them. Knead the dough in your hands or on parchment paper.

3. Store play dough in a sealed airtight container or plastic bag.

4. To prepare for Easter Egg fillers, wrap small pieces of dough in plastic wrap and place in the egg if using right away. Otherwise, place all individual plastic wrapped dough in an airtight container or plastic bag.
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