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Creative Family Ideas in the Pacific Northwest

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Pretend Gingerbread Cookie Play Dough

Looking for a creative kids activity to make a quiet afternoon more fun? This pretend gingerbread cookie play dough recipe is easy to make. It uses my go-to favorite play dough recipe, and with a creative twist that allows kids to cut out realistic looking play cookies! We used beads for sprinkles and cut out felt shapes for pretend icing. Making pretend cookies is a fun way for kids to be creative and practice their motor skills.

All you need to make this sensory play cookie dough is the basic playdough ingredients: flour, salt, water and cream of tarter. Add some brown food coloring and small beads, and you are ready to start making play dough gingerbread cookies!

Creative pretend gingerbread cookie play dough recipe

Best Play Dough Recipe

  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 1 tbsp. cream of tartar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • brown food coloring
  • colored beads or sequins
  • squares of colored felt

You can use this playdough recipe to make all colors of homemade play dough. I’ve even made mint play dough, that smelled like mint!

To make homemade play dough, first mix together the water and salt in a medium pot. Heat the mixture until the salt is fully dissolved. Next, stir in the cream of tarter. Finally, add the 2 cups of flour a little at a time, stirring to avoid clumps. Mix the dough over medium heat until it thickens into dough. Once the mixture reaches a dough-like consistency, turn off the heat and allow the homemade play dough to fully cool.

Pretend cookie play dough recipe for kids

Once the white play dough is cool enough to touch, you can separate it into sections and add food coloring to make different colors. In this case, we made brown play dough to resemble gingerbread cookie dough.

Gingerbread Cookie Play Dough

To make gingerbread cookie play dough, mix in brown food coloring and beads to look like sprinkles. I’ve found it helpful to dump out the playdough onto a piece of parchment paper. I use the parchment paper to repeatedly fold the playdough onto itself to knead in the food coloring. This prevents my hands from getting colored.

Easy play dough recipe for kids to make pretend cookies

Once the pretend gingerbread cookie playdough is mixed, it’s ready to make pretend cookies, using cookie cutters, felt shapes and beads!

Colorful pretend gingerbread cookies play dough recipe for kids

Creative play dough recipe preschool kids activity

To make the felt shapes, use a pen to trace around a cookie cutter onto a piece of felt. Stack several pieces of felt and cut out each shape with scissors. These felt shapes easily look like colored icing when placed on top of each play dough cookie!

Make pretend gingerbread cookies with this play dough recipe

Making play dough cookies is a fun activity for preschool, homeschool, or even a kids birthday party. My kids enjoyed cutting out different playdough shapes and decorating them with extra beads. Rolling out the dough and using cookie cutters is a great sensory activity for kids to practice their motor skills.

Preschool playdough recipe make pretend cookies

These fun play dough cookies look almost like the real thing! Kids may even discover, that although flour-based play dough is technically edible, it won’t be sweet like real cookies! Nevertheless, making pretend play dough cookies is a fun and hands-on activity for any child who loves playdough.

Interactive playdough activity decorate cookies

Kids play dough recipe decorate gingerbread cookies


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