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Pretend Play: Play Dough Bakery

This cute play dough bakery activity makes a wonderful imaginative game for toddlers and preschoolers.

two-year-old Lily making play dough "cakes"

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My Favorite Play Dough Recipe

play dough bakery

The best play dough recipe for kids - great to play with and keeps for a long time.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 5 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 1 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp oil
  • Food coloring


  1. Mix the dry ingredients together.
  2. Add in the wet ingredients, whisking until smooth.
  3. Cook over medium heat until the play dough is nearly set (no longer sticking to the edges of the pan).
  4. Remove the play dough from the heat.
  5. Knead on a flat surface until cool.
  6. Store in a ziploc bag or airtight container.


Whisking all the ingredients until they are smooth before cooking makes all the difference with this recipe!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving:Calories: 59Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 2831mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 1g

Play Dough Bakery Activity for Kids

The girls set up this play dough bakery one morning while Johnny was at school. Lily especially enjoyed using these silicone ice cube trays from IKEA to make play dough biscuits. Amazon sells all sorts of fun silicone baking trays you can use for this.

Play dough delicacies by six-year-old Emma

Emma got quite a bit more elaborate – I never would have thought to make pink play dough eggs, but she made it work!

pink play dough "eggs" by six-year-old Emma

What pretend play with play dough do your kids enjoy?

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MaryAnne is a craft loving educator, musician, photographer, and writer who lives in Silicon Valley with her husband Mike and their four children.

27 thoughts on “Pretend Play: Play Dough Bakery”

  1. What a fun idea! We have a whole bunch of those little IKEA trays. I’ll have to set up a little surprise bakery station in the kitchen this weekend. I actually just picked up an apron and chef’s hat at the dollar store, so this will be perfect. Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. My kids love play doh, too! Cavan got quite a few new play doh sets for his birthday, so they’ve really been having fun with it lately. They got a pizza shop set. It’s fun to see what creations they make! Only problem is Cavan still tries to eat it!

  3. I just love how a bit of play dough can lead to so much open ended play. My Rosie is just getting into play dough and loves making pretend cupcakes, muffins, and pies. I love the addition of the ice cube tray :)

    1. I love watching their imaginations develop while playing with play dough! And the silicone ice cube trays work really nicely with play dough :)

  4. I really need to get our playdoh out this weekend – we haven’t played with it for a while, since it’s usually a long activity with set up and clean up involved. Anna does enjoy it when she has time – her favorite thing to do is making monsters and people out of playdoh.

  5. Elisa | blissfulE

    What a fun bakery! We haven’t done much with playdough – thanks for the reminder as it’s gotten rainy here recently.

  6. Bethany @ No Twiddle Twaddle

    We actually just did a similar activity this past week. I love the play dough eggs!

  7. We have those plastic Ikea trays, so versatile. My kids love making animals out of play doh. I am a huge fan and never mind the mess because they are so creative with it.

    1. We are JUST getting into making animals out of play dough! Emma made two hedgehogs and a duck this week

  8. Because of the cooking that we’ve been doing recently making cookies that is what J wants to do – he did however go through a phase of fossil creation and burried his dinosaurs in the playdough and dug them out

    1. So fun! My kids do a lot of buried treasure with our Floam, but not with play dough for some reason.

        1. It’s a bit like play dough with microbeads inside for an interesting sensory experience – you can see ours in this post.

  9. my kids love making worlds and habitats. i give them a cookie sheet and all sorts of natural items and recyclables (and some glitter – always). oh, and sometimes we scent the dough. even though they are getting older, they still love it.

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