DIY fun for the whole family

Zero Waste Play Dough

Zero Waste Play Dough

We all know and love Play-Doh, and it’s no secret that it’s a classic activity that children have adored for years. No one can deny that Play-Doh is an iconic brand, but here at Little Goat Gruff we like to make an effort to tweak what we can to make things more environmentally friendly, more sustainable, and more fun.

Making your own play dough at home is so simple, and as with everything DIY, it can be such a fun experience for the family and gives little ones a chance to get stuck in too.

All you will need for this recipe can probably already be found in your kitchen cupboards, which is the best bit about homemade play dough!

As well as being super easy to make, this homemade play dough tends to keep better than traditional play dough, without drying up and falling apart!

You can even substitute the flour for gluten free flour if there are any intolerances in the home.

Most of the ingredients needed can be bought in bulk stores and put in your own containers, making this recipe plastic free, and when it comes to the food dyes, we recommend using up what you have at home, but if you’re all out, it is super fun to make your own natural dyes from things such as turmeric, beetroot, spinach, coffee and pomegranate!


150g of flour

90g of salt

230ml of warm water

1 tablespoon/15g of oil (vegetable, olive, coconut)

2 tablespoons/20g of cream of tartar (alternatively, use 3 tbsp/30g of lemon juice)

Food colouring of your choice (optional)

To make, add all dry components to a large bowl and mix well before adding your wet ingredients and kneading for 5-10 minutes!

How long does homemade play dough last?

Your homemade play-dough will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 months, and when your dough is ready to go, it can be composted!

This recipe is sure to bring so many smiles and fun times to your home, and there are so many options to level up your play time! Try separating your dough into batches before adding a different food colouring to each for rainbow dough, or add a drop of essential oil for a sweet scent! This play-dough also makes the perfect zero-waste, homemade gift idea!

Ways we love to play

Our homemade play dough has been a trusty pal for play time, and we love to use it in conjunction with our other toys to create some seriously fun play.

Our little ones adore creating super fun stamps with their play dough, and with Plan Toys’ Tactile Stone, they can choose from 24 stones to get creative with different imprints. Play such as this is not only enjoyable, but encourages our children to explore sensory skills, sequence and pattern recognition, matching and categorising. We also enjoy using loose parts from Grimms and Grapat to do this! 

Another way to elevate your play with this dough is to from it into shapes such as mountains, trees, flowers and homes to create exciting, interactive background scenes for your Wudimals and Holztiger wooden animals to inhabit!