Boiling Water Play dough


I’ve engaged in many “cook vs no cook playdough recipe” debates.

Yes, such a thing exists and can be quite divisive!

On the one hand cooked play dough generally lasts longer, it’s more flexible and has a smoother texture because the heat helps dissolve the salt, but it involves using a stove top which doesn’t always suit a child-friendly environment, also you have to wait for the play dough to cool down before handling (or if you’re me you just dig into it straight away and burn your hands). Uncooked play dough is quicker to make, can be mixed by children and there is no cool-down time.

SO – what is the happy middle ground?!

Adding freshly boiled water instead of cooking it on a stove top.

Obviously this is something that an adult is going to have to do, but boiling water play dough does reach a handle-able temperature almost right away while having the benefits of a stove-top play dough. WIN-WIN!


Ingredients: (These are the same as a stove top play dough recipe here)

  • 1 cup of flour
  • 1/2 cup of salt
  • 2 tablespoons cream of tartar
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 1 cup of BOILING WATER
  • Food colouring


Combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Dig a little well, or hole, in the middle and add in the cooking oil, followed by the freshly boiled water (KEEP LITTLE HANDS CLEAR!) Stir the mixture immediately and keep stirring! It’ll look like a wet, gluggy, clumpy mess, but bear with me – keep stirring. It’ll be okay. It should come together nicely within about a minute. If it’s too hot to touch set aside until it’s cooled, then turn out on the bench (if it’s still a bit tacky dust the bench with flour first) and knead.

Divide out into balls and add a couple of drops of food colouring to each one as desired.

I hope that settles the debate once and for all.

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Rachel Stewart

Rachel is the founder of Parenting Central Australia. She is raising two children, boy and girl, with her partner.She has a background in early childhood education, but right now is content to be a stay at home mum.She is passionate about birthing rights, breastfeeding and mental health. She enjoys crafting, drinking coffee (sometimes wine) and spending a little too much time on Facebook.

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