Calming Playdough Recipe

I used to work as a preschool teacher. Of course play dough is always a favorite activity. To switch things up a bit, we sometimes would add essential oil to the play dough. Children are very sensory and learn about their world through touching, tasting, smelling and exploring.

Do your kids ever need to get some wiggles out before nap time or bed time? Why not try some calming play dough! You can whip up a batch in less than 10 minutes. Here is my go to recipe:


  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/3 cup salt
  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil

In a 2 quart saucepan, add flour, cream of tartar and salt (yes, it really is 1/3 cup!) Next, add water and vegetable oil. Turn your burner on medium and stir. It will be a little lumpy, but just keep stirring until it starts to solidify. If your stove is already hot, it may only take 30 seconds. If your stove is still heating up, it can take about 3 minutes.

Once the dough starts to gather together on the spoon, you know it is done. Place the dough on some waxed paper or a plate to cool. Once it is cool, poke a hole into the middle of the play dough and put 3 drops of Lavender oil into the hole. You can knead the play dough to squish out the lumps and also to mix the oil into the play dough. 

I didn’t add food coloring to this batch. Many people have allergies to food coloring and in trying to keep this an all-natural recipe, I didn’t add any. My kids didn’t mind:)

Lavender oil reduces stress, relieves burns, cuts and other skin irritations, to mention only a few of its many uses. Buy your bottle of Certified Organic French Lavender HERE and bless your family with all of its amazing uses healing properties.

We store our play dough in an air tight bag and it can last for months.

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