How to Fix Dried Play Dough

My little guy loves play dough! We have been using this awesome homemade play dough recipe (#1 on the list from We Love Being Moms). It’s so easy to make and has a great texture like the store-bought kind that is not too crumbly or sticky.

But T now knows how to open up the play dough by himself, and of course he doesn’t always remember to put it away when he’s done… this morning I found a bunch of play dough that he had rolled out to use with cookie cutters and left sitting out overnight. It had dried out a lot and was really crumbly with hardened bits all over the top. But, with just one magic ingredient plus water, and 3 simple steps, our dried-out play dough was as good as new!

Fix Dried Play Dough

The magic ingredient? Cream of tartar!

There were two different colors of play dough that were left out- I did one with the cream of tartar and one with only water. The one that I tried to revive with water only was so gooey and slimy afterwards that I had to toss it, but the one with the cream of tartar mixed in was perfect! You really would never know that it had ever dried out!

How to fix dried play dough:

1. Roll the dried play dough into a ball and knead it in your hands for a minute to break up the dried layer on top and soften it up a bit.

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2. In a bowl, mix together 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar with 1 tablespoon water.

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3. Add the ball of play dough to the bowl and roll it around, kneading the dough with your fingers so that you soak up all of the liquid into the dough.

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4. Take the dough out of the bowl and knead with your hands for a minute until it starts to feel softer and less wet.

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5. Pop it in the microwave for 20 seconds. Then just squish in your hands a couple times and it will feel soft and ready to play with again!

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No need to ever toss dried play dough again! Hooray!

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4 thoughts on “How to Fix Dried Play Dough

  1. This is good to know! We have a recipe that calls for cream of tartar but says it’s optional. I never added it because it just seemed like an extra step. We’ll have to try it next time – it will probably help our playdough last longer! I LOVE your blog, by the way. So cute. Keep it up!

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    1. Yeah, I’ve learned that the cream of tartar is what makes the difference between okay play dough and great play dough. And it’s definitely the key to fixing dried out dough! Glad you’re enjoying the blog! ๐Ÿ™‚

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  2. Thank you so much for this article! I just made some super calming lavender play dough and it was starting to get a little dry. Now I know what to do to make it last a little longer. I would hate to waste all of the flour and other ingredients I used.

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