Basil Play Dough Recipe

While away in Italy we made some natural, no-cook play dough using fresh basil to scent it. It smelt wonderful and was such a feast for the senses while little hands played with it! 

As with all our no-cook play dough recipes, this took only a few minutes and is a simple, easy way to engage the kids in an activity for an hour or more!


  • 3/4 fresh basil leaves
  • 1.5 cups boiling water
  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 2 tbsps cream of tartar
  • 1/2 cup fine salt
  • 2 tbsps vegetable oil


  • grind the basil leaves into a watery paste by using a pestle and mortar and adding a few drops of warm water
  • mix the dry ingredients in a bowl
  • add the oil and stir through
  • pour in the boiling water and stir until it comes together
  • add the basil mixture, a little at a time. If it is very watery just use a little or else the dough will get too sticky
  • take it out of the bowl and knead it on a surface for a few minutes. During kneading it will lose its stickiness and become soft and stretchy.
  • if it’s still too sticky add a little more flour, if too dry a little more water.
  • PLAY! try making pretend pizzas or bread rolls, flat breads or foccacia!

 You may also like to see some of these other play dough ideas!

natural herbal play dough recipe
the benefits of playing with play dough
lavender play dough
textured aromatherapy play dough recipes

or search for dozens more in the search bar!

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