I feel like my baby boy is officially a big kid because he’s playing with playdough.
I decided to wait until he was out of the phase of “put everything in my mouth”, and with how much we’ve been at home lately, I deemed it the perfect time to introduce it to him. While James isn’t totally into playdough yet, he does love squishing it and cutting out shapes with cookie cutters, so that’s a start! I hope he comes to love playdough as much as I did growing up. It’s such a fun and tactile way to play and learn.
Instead of buying some playdough at the store, I decided to make some. Not only did it mean I could avoid going out during this crazy pandemic, but I love that I know exactly what’s in it. I had complete control over what ingredients I used, and I didn’t care if he accidentally ate it or if it got all over him and you know… in his hair. #toddlerprobs
I could have used some already made plant based food coloring (like this stuff), but I decided to be a little more creative and use ingredients I already had at the house to color his playdough. It ended up being WAY easier than I thought it would be, and I love how fun the colors turned out. Next time I want to pick up some tumeric powder at the store to make a yellow colored version!
Plant Based Food Coloring
For the berry color:
1/4 cup mixed frozen berries
2 tsp water
Heat the frozen berries and water in a small saucepan until almost boiling. Carefully pour into a blender (I used the smoothie cup on my Ninja blender) or food processor and blend until smooth. Using a sieve, strain the mixture into a small bowl then set aside. You can store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.
For the green color:
1 cup fresh spinach
2 tbsp water
Heat the spinach and water in a small saucepan until almost boiling. Carefully pour into a blender (I used the smoothie cup on my Ninja blender) or food processor and blend until smooth. You can store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.
*For a more vibrant green, strain out the liquid and use the “goop” that’s left in the sieve!*
Toxin Free Playdough
1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
2 tbsp. cream of tartar
1 cup water
2 tbsp. oil
2-3 drops lavender essential oil
*I made two batches of playdough, and used ALL of the food coloring each of the above recipes made to have a berry colored batch and a green colored batch!
Mix together the flour, salt and cream of tartar in a medium saucepan. Carefully stir in the oil, water, essential oil and food coloring.
Heat the mixture on high heat, stirring constantly. It will slowly thicken as it heats. Continue stirring until it’s reached a stiff playdough consistency. Remove from the heat and let it cool before playing.
Store in a covered glass container in the fridge.