Kids Activities

Homemade Gluten Free Playdough

Homemade Gluten Free Playdough is the perfect sensory activity for kids! All the fun, none of the gluten.

Gluten Free Playdough

Gluten Free Playdough

I don’t know about your kids, but my little one loves playing with playdough. When she was younger she just loved to squish it through her fingers and crumbling it all over the place. Now that she’s older she still loves to squish it, but is getting better at making shapes and loves all of her playdough toys.

Playdough is great for gross motor skills and development, but it is a problem for this momma with celiac disease. Traditional play dough is not gluten free and anyone with a toddler knows that playdough gets everywhere. Under nails, under shoes, you find it in places it never was to start with.

Gluten Free Playdough

Problem Solved

When I was teaching, I always made playdough instead of buying it. It was so much cheaper. Gluten free playdough is sold on Amazon, but it is pretty pricey, so I pulled out my trusty homemade playdough recipe (I’ve been using it forever, no idea where I first got it) and decided to try it with some gluten free flour. I was pleasantly surprised how well it worked.

I tried one other time to make gluten free playdough with cornstarch and it was a disaster. This was so much easier and fairly inexpensive, plus it has a great texture and molds really well.

Recipe Notes:

I used Trader Joe’s gluten free flour. It is cheaper than what I use for baking and it worked perfectly.

Use cheap salt. The kind that comes in the round cardboard cylinder. It is super fine. If you use a coarser salt, the texture will be off.

Add the food coloring with the water. If you try to add it later, it is really difficult to knead in.

Those cute little storage containers? I got them at the dollar store. 10 for $1.00 and they are perfect for playdough.

I hope you enjoy this gluten free playdough recipe, do you have any fun gluten free playdough recipes you like to use?

Gluten Free Playdough
Print Recipe
3.65 from 31 votes

Gluten Free Playdough


  • 1 cup gluten free flour I use Trader Joes
  • 1/2 cup salt the cheap fine kind
  • 1 Tablespoon cream of tarter
  • 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 cup water
  • Food Coloring


  • Combine flour, salt, and cream of tarter in medium saucepan.
  • Turn heat to medium.
  • Add water, vegetable oil, and food coloring.
  • Stir constantly until dough forms. (2-3 minutes)
  • Dump onto wax paper.
  • Let cool a few minutes and then need till smooth.

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  • Reply
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    […] Stickers, coloring books, markers, sidewalk chalk are all great ways to fill an Easter basket. Homemade gluten-free playdough would be fun, too! I like to balance the big item with a few little items. I try to plan ahead and […]

  • Reply
    Nancy Rotatori
    September 22, 2021 at 6:42 pm

    Help, we have been making this for our preschool classes, but it is so sticky. I used so much extra Trader Joes GF flour then let it sit for 4 days and finally it wasn’t too bad. Why does it come out so sticky and what can I do to make it not sticky. We used almost a whole bag to get it not sticky.

    • Reply
      October 25, 2021 at 2:55 pm

      Hi! I just bought some GF Flour from Trader Joe’s and will be trying it again. It is possible they changed the formula. I would recommend adding a spoonful or two of cornstarch to help with stickiness, but will be updating this shortly! Also, please make sure your cream of tarter is fresh. Thanks!

  • Reply
    February 4, 2021 at 12:15 pm

    5 stars
    So I DID use King Arthur Allpurpose gf flour and made it work. I stirred until I couldn’t anymore for about 1 minute. It was insanely sticky, so I added about 1tsp more of oil and kneaded that in, then kept adding flour until it was smooth, dry and malleable. It worked great. I may try adding 1/2 cup of flour from the start then kneading the rest in. It was annoying but I find homemade play dough always is.

  • Reply
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    • Reply
      Kathy S
      December 9, 2020 at 11:23 pm

      I have used this basic recipe for about 40 years using all purpose flour. My recipe has one difference—the one I use calls for 2 t. Of cream of tartar instead of 1 T.. For those who had problems with the consistency, our preschool recommended heating it until it looks like mashed potatoes. Using that consistency hint helped us make a successful play dough.

      I would also recommend putting your web address on the printable items. I am actually looking up information for someone else. Putting the web address on the printable gives credit where credit is due. Your site looks great and I suspect that the mom will come back and look at it. I did put the web address on the copy that I printed.

      • Reply
        December 15, 2020 at 2:27 pm

        Hi! I will have to try the added cream of tarter. GF flours tend to behave differently, I’ve also added cornstarch at one point. I need to do an overhaul of this recipe, but time just hasn’t allowed. I will also double check to make sure the name is on the printables! Thanks!

  • Reply
    Wifey With a Knifey
    July 15, 2020 at 1:45 pm

    1 star
    I feel bad leaving a poor review but we made this today it is so sticky! Any idea why? I keep adding more and more GF flour (brand is King Arthur) and it’s just a sticky mess 🙁

    • Reply
      August 3, 2020 at 2:48 pm

      No worries, I have never made this with King Arthur flour. I usually use the Gluten Free Flour from Trader Joes for it because it’s cheaper. Did you use table salt? I did try it once with a thicker salt and it was a mess. I’ve actually only used King Arthur one other time and my recipe didn’t work with it either, it didn’t thicken up at all. In the next few weeks I am going to see if I can get my hands on a few other gluten free flours and see if I can figure out why that happened. Thanks!

  • Reply
    May 3, 2020 at 1:05 am

    5 stars
    My son is allergic to wheat and I tried making this dough for him, since all the store bought dough has wheat in it. This is an awesome recipe. Thank you so much for sharing it. Tip: I also added the color after the dough was slightly cool. Made 4 portions and had 4 different colours 🙂

    • Reply
      May 18, 2020 at 1:47 pm

      Awesome! I’m so glad you liked it!

      • Reply
        August 28, 2020 at 4:43 pm

        3 stars
        Mine was so goopy
        One was like hard and the other one was liquid it would look fine while it was hot and then just like liquify
        I used king Arthur’s
        And after I made it I saw the other moms Recipe
        Maybe you should put not to use king authors?
        Not trying to be a Karen

        • Reply
          October 13, 2020 at 2:34 pm

          Hi! thanks for letting me know. I am going to add that note. I have actually tried using King Arthur’s in a tempura batter and it did the same thing. I did make some salt dough the other day and I mixed the king arthur’s and some cornstarch (it was a no cook dough) and it worked well. I will definitely add that note. Thank you!

    • Reply
      August 3, 2020 at 3:01 pm

      I’m so glad you loved it? Do you mind telling me which gluten free flour you used?

  • Reply
    January 12, 2018 at 12:31 pm

    Thanks for the recipe! My four year old helped me make it 🙂

  • Reply
    March 21, 2017 at 8:06 pm

    This looks really easy to make!! My kids would love it!

  • Reply
    Amy Blake
    March 21, 2017 at 2:55 pm

    Great idea! Making your own is so much more cost effective.

  • Reply
    Amy Blake
    March 21, 2017 at 2:54 pm

    I love making play dough for my kids, I m defiantly going to try this recipe out.

  • Reply
    March 21, 2017 at 10:39 am

    I have always made all our play dough homemade and think it last so much long and is better. I don’t have to worry about it being gluten free thank goodness.

  • Reply
    March 21, 2017 at 9:21 am

    Is it bad that I don’t have kids but I still want to make this?? 😉

  • Reply
    March 21, 2017 at 8:20 am

    I have always wanted to make our own play doh and just have not DONE! I think we should put this on the to do list for this weekend!

  • Reply
    Amanda M Rodriguez
    March 21, 2017 at 8:18 am

    Going to try making this tonight!

  • Reply
    March 21, 2017 at 5:28 am

    This is a great alternative to buying it. My boys love it but we go through it like no man’s business cause Son no. 1 leaves it out and mummy forgets to check to make sure it’s away. So it would be good to be able to just whip some up with some staples from the pantry!

  • Reply
    Alisa Fleming
    March 20, 2017 at 11:06 pm

    This is too much fun! So great for kids parties and almost makes me wish I could play, too!

  • Reply
    Kelly @ TastingPage
    March 20, 2017 at 9:42 pm

    What a great idea for those kiddos who have big ol allergies. Fun for everyone!

  • Reply
    Christina Shoemaker
    March 20, 2017 at 7:49 pm

    What a great recipe for playdoh! And I was going to say how much I love the plastic containers! Thanks for sharing where you got them!

  • Reply
    April K.
    March 20, 2017 at 6:36 pm

    I think I’m going to make some of this for my parents house. My daughter has play dough at my parents house already but when she runs out, id rather her play with this than what is at the store.

  • Reply
    March 20, 2017 at 2:29 pm

    This looks amazing! I will be coming back to this recipe as we have a wheat allergy in our family.

  • Reply
    March 20, 2017 at 9:30 am

    Would you believe that I have never actually made my own playdough? I need to and this recipe looks perfect. Thank you!!

  • Reply
    March 20, 2017 at 8:58 am

    This is awesome! I’ve been needing to re-up our Playdoh supply, so I’m definitely going to pin this for later!

  • Reply
    Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine
    March 20, 2017 at 8:41 am

    I was just going to make some play-duh the other day! Ha!

  • Reply
    March 20, 2017 at 7:28 am

    I love to make playdough! It is a cheap easy thing to make and it keeps kids entertained for such a long time!

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