Little people love to help in the kitchen! Here’s an easy salt dough recipe that’s fun to prepare and even more fun to play with. Bonus: It’s also a great sensory activity!
1 cup plain or gluten-free flour
1 cup salt
(Up to) 1 cup warm water
½ tsp nutmeg
1 tbsp cinnamon
Optional food coloring in Fall colors (red, orange, yellow)
Mix the flour, salt and spices in a bowl, then add warm water in small amounts, mixing as you go.
Allow your child to help scoop, pour and mix. Its great motor skills practice! For older kids, this is a great opportunity to expose them to math concepts like units of measurement and fractions.
You may not need the entire cup of water. Knead the dough with your hands until ingredients are fully combined. Consistency is key. The dough should be slightly sticky, but not so sticky that it sticks to your fingers. Add a sprinkle more flour if the dough is too sticky. Divide it into 3 even portions and add different colors to each by kneading in the color.
Take it even further!
Ages 0-2: Older infants may be interested in exploring the texture (and taste!) of the dough. Encourage them to poke, squeeze and tear apart pieces of the dough to foster their curiosity and grow their sensory awareness!
Turn it into a Keepsake Ornament: Roll out the dough, press your little one’s foot or hand into the dough, then cookie cut around the imprint. Poke a little hole for a string in the top of the cut-out shape, then bake at 250 degrees F for about 3 hours. Paint, glaze or leave it plain. These make great holiday gifts too!
Ages 2-7: Have your child collect fallen leaves or acorns, roll out the dough and make imprints with them. Bake the imprinted shapes (as above) then paint them for a beautiful fall decoration. Bonus: Ask your little one what they’re thankful for this year and write it on the back with a permanent marker. Don’t forget to date it too! You’ll love to look back on these sweet words in the years to come!