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Watch the video below to see how to make our Natural Dye Homemade Playdough Recipe. Make sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more fun videos!
Our natural dye homemade playdough recipe is a natural alternative from food coloring using food powders like Pitaya, Goji Berry, Matcha and Butterfly Pea.
However, lately in making food crafts or easy cute foods for kids, we have been trying some of the vibrant natural food powders readily available online and in stores these days.
Not only are these a healthier, natural alternatives to food coloring, but they also offer some additional health benefits if used in food, e.g. a smoothie.
Since we have many of these powders right at home, we decided to test making natural dye playdough with them!
Is the playdough recipe the same using food powders vs. food coloring?
The method is very similar, except of course you use food powders instead of food coloring or other non-food dyes. However, because you are adding extra dry ingredients (vs. a few drops of food coloring) you do have to adjust the amount of liquid and oil.
Also, we found not all food powders dissolve the same! The Pink Pitaya and Goji Berry powders we used dissolved like a dream and resulted in buttery soft playdoughs.
However we found we had to add more water and oil to the Matcha and Butterfly Pea playdoughs, even though we used the same amount of flour!
We also recognize different brands of food powders may react slightly differently. So below, we linked to the powders we used and have provided a basic starter recipe, keeping in mind you may need to adjust ingredients lightly depending on the powder you use.
How does natural playdough smell like?
If you’ve ever made homemade playdough, you’ll know that it smells pretty terrible! We always add some essential oils to our homemade playdough if using regular food coloring.
But in this case, using the food powders, there is no need! The playdough takes on the scent of your food dye which is a natural sweet scent for the most part. Matcha is especially fragrant and makes the playdough smell like green tea which is quite pleasing!
How to Make Natural Dye Homemade Playdough Recipe – Ingredients:
1 1/4 to 1 1/2 Cups all purpose white flour
1/3 Cup Salt
1.5 Teaspoon Cream of Tartar
1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil
1/4 Cup Food Powder Per color
(We used Pink Pitaya, Goji Berry, Matcha and Butterfly Pea)
2/3 – 1 Cup Boiling Hot Water
- 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 Cups all purpose white flour
- 1/3 Cup Salt
- 1.5 Teaspoon Cream of Tartar
- 1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil
- 1/4 Cup Food Powder Per Color (we used Pink Pitaya, Goji Berry, Matcha and Butterfly Pea)
- 2/3 to 1 Cup Boiling Hot Water
Step 1. In a bowl, combine your flour, salt, cream of tartar, vegetable oil, food powder and hot water. *Start with 1 1/4 cups flour first.
Step 2. Stir until a dough starts to form.
Step 3. This is when you'll want to use a disposable glove if you have one (or not if you don't mind your hands getting initially sticky). Remember the dough is hot (although not burning(so if you don't use a glove let it cool a bit before kneading).
Start kneading the dough in the bowl until a ball forms. Remove and continue kneading on a non-porous surface (or use parchment paper on top of a table) until a soft and pliable dough forms.
See notes below on troubleshooting.
We found the matcha and butterfly pea doughs to be drier and added more hot water and vegetable oil than the Pitaya and Goji Berri. Try the base recipe and follow the troubleshooting steps below if you are seeing same results.
Troubleshooting Steps for Homemade Playdough:
What if my dough is flour-y? Add a more boiling hot water a tablespoon at a time
What if my dough is dry and cracked? Try adding more vegetable oil a teaspoon at a time and mix thoroughly.
What if my dough is too wet? Try adding a bit more flour a little at a time.
How do I store my homeamade playdough?
We store ours in an air-tight zipper bag and it stays soft for several weeks this way.
If you like this homemade playdough recipe, you might also like:
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Agnes Hsu is a mom of three and has been inspiring parents and kids to get creative with easy activities and family friendly recipes for over 10 years. She shares her love for creative play and kids food to her 2MM+ followers online. Agnes' commitment to playful learning and kindness has not only raised funds for charity but also earned features in prestigious nationwide publications.