Salt dough is cheap and easy to make. Your children can have lots of fun creating everything from Christmas decorations to animal figures. Even younger siblings can get involved by creating foot or hand prints. Have a look on this website for ideas of what you can create.
Little fingers will love getting stuck into the kneading
The recipe for salt dough is very simple so it's also easy to make more or less depending on the number of projects you want to make and how many children are involved. The recipe shows cups but you can use any cup you want as the ingredients are just proportional to each other.
If you cover the salt dough with cling film or in a sealed container, it will keep in the fridge for a week. If you have a toddler with a short attention span then you could make the salt dough one day and use it for modelling on a different day.
Time: 20 minutes
Age: Any age
Basic, cheap ingredients
2 cups of plain flour
1 cup of salt
1 cup of water
1 tablespoon of vegetable oil (optional but it makes kneading easier
Baking tray or plate
Put the flour, salt and vegetable oil if you're using it, into a large bowl.
Add a little water, mix it in with your wooden spoon and then gradually add more. Kids love mixing and if you have several helping they can all take turns.
Once the mixture starts coming together into a ball, you can take it out and start kneading. It will take about 10 minutes of good kneading to form an elastic ball and a little longer with kids involved. It's great fun for kids to get stuck in and help.
Get stuck in kneading your dough
When your ball of salt dough forms easily into a ball then it's ready to create anything your child's imagination can dream up.
If you find the salt dough is a little dry then add some more water and if it's a little sticky add some more flour.
Ready for some more creative fun
Once the amazing creations have been make, it's time to cook the dough so that it sets hard, ready for decorating.
There are several methods for 'cooking' which I've experimented with.
If you have small thin items then you can microwave them. Place on greaseproof paper on a plate and microwave for 1 minute on medium high. Repeat if required. The first time I did this I burnt a couple of little stars by heating for too high and too long so keep a close eye on what's happening.
Alternatively, place on greaseproof paper on a baking tray in a low oven for 3 hours (50 degrees C). For larger and thicker items, you may need to turn them over half way through baking.
The salt dough will also dry naturally in a warm room over a couple of days.
Your salt dough creations are ready when they sound hard and hollow when tapped.
You could also try adding some food colouring in the initial stages to create coloured salt dough. Why not upload your photos in the comments box and share what your kids have created. You might even be tempted to get creative yourself.