Here’s a wonderfully easy, beautifully scented gingerbread play dough recipe that takes just minutes to make, makes the house smell so much like Christmas and is a great DIY gift to give to friends!
GINGERBREAD PLAY DOUGH RECIPE:
- 2 cups plain flour (all purpose)
- 1/2 cup salt
- 3 tablespoons any oil
- 2 tablespoons cream of tartar
- 1 cup of boiling water (added gradually)
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger
- 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
- 5 drops of glycerine for extra shine!
- Gingerbread Man Cookie Cutter
- Always use real measuring cups like these![Amazon affiliate links]
Mix all of the dry ingredients into a bowl. Add the oil. Stir in the boiling water and allow to cool briefly. Knead it into a workable dough on a floured surface using your hands. After a few minutes it should be soft and smooth and none should come off on your fingers. If it’s still a little sticky then add more flour, one tablespoon at a time until it’s just right! Finally, add the glycerine for that extra smooth softness and shine.
This is best played with still warm as it feels wonderful and smells so aromatic! I still think there’s nothing better than a batch of fresh play dough for calming and engaging young children and this gingerbread play dough recipe is my favourite of all for sensory rich play.
Ideas of ways to play with gingerbread play dough:
* add gingerbread men cookie cutters and rolling pins and pretend to make real gingerbread men and “bake” them in a pretend oven. Role play being bakers and sell them in bakery shop pretend play!
* set out some buttons, beads and googly eyes and use them to add features to the gingerbread men. We used some buttons from my Mum’s vast collection and it was fun to share with the girls that some of them had come from clothes that had belonged to their great grandmother!
* read the story of The Gingerbread Man alongside the activity and retell the story as you play. This is a fantastic play activity to try after reading that traditional tale as play dough is perfect for storytelling. Say the repeated refrain “run, run as fast as you can, you can’t catch me I’m the Gingerbread Man!” while you play.
This gingerbread play dough recipe makes a FANTASTIC homemade Christmas gift! Make some for a preschooler and present it in an airtight jar, along with a gingerbread man cookie cutter and the recipe and ideas for play printed onto card, threaded onto ribbon. You could even include a collection of interesting buttons and beads too, to add to the fun! Here are 30 DIY Gifts to Make for Kids if you would like more inspiration too!
It’s also a great seller at a School Christmas Fair fundraiser event. Try making it to sell alongside our Gingerbread Slime too!
- sensory: explore malleable materials using hands, discuss smells and what they make us think of
- motor skills: small muscle hand development by pushing, squeezing, rolling, flattening and cutting dough
- literacy: retell stories in the correct sequence using storybook language, identify main characters from stories
- maths: count objects accurately up to 10 and beyond, weighing, measuring and capacity
Check out my full PLAY DOUGH RECIPE COLLECTION here for loads more variations, scents and themes!
I hope you love this gingerbread play dough recipe and that it becomes a firm part of your Christmas traditions too!