Saturday, November 6, 2010

Apple Pie Play Dough

Last year Pumpkin Pie Play Dough was such a success with my classroom of preschoolers and with my own children that I knew I had to add some other multi-sensory and seasonal doughs to my repertoire.  In my search I encountered a blogger named Mari-Ann, creator of Counting Coconuts, who seems to love making homemade play dough as much as I do.  She shared about Apple Pie Play Dough and inspired me to create some for myself.

I began by making a batch of my tried-and-true salt dough.  I kept the dough in its natural color, which closely resembles real pie dough, and then let the children sprinkle on spices.  They added pinches of cinnamon, nutmeg, and ground cloves.  When they began to knead the dough the wonderful aroma of apple pie was released.  Once the spices had been mixed into the dough, it took on a lovely brown color with beautiful shadings and stripes.

I provided the children with pie tins, rolling pins, plastic apples, and a variety of cutting tools.  The more they worked with the Apple Pie Play Dough the better the classroom smelled.  I stored the dough in an air tight container for a few weeks.  After a couple days of free exploration and lots of other 'appley' classroom activities, I set out a ball of dough (this photo actually shows red Kool-aid play dough), an apple shaped cookie cutter, and cookie cutter letters that spelled APPLE.  Some of the children were thrilled to spell the word apple while others created an apple pie shop at which I was a very satisfied customer.

I'm so grateful to have discovered the inspiration for Apple Pie Play Dough over at Counting Coconuts.  As with all play doughs, it is a multi-sensory experience that helps develop fine motor skills and inspires creative play.  It also makes any kitchen or classroom smell just like a fresh apple pie is baking, but without any calories.

Apple Pie Play Dough Recipe

3 cups flour
2 tablespoons oil
3 cups water
1 1/2 cups salt
2 tablespoons cream of tartar
a few tablespoons each of ground cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves

  1. Whisk all ingredients together in a large heavy bottomed sauce pan.
  2. Stir constantly over medium heat.  The mixture will be soupy for several minutes and then suddenly it will stick together and form a rough ball.  
  3. When it thickens and sticks together, remove the pan from the heat and continue stirring.
  4. Turn the hot ball onto a floured surface, and began kneading as it cools.
  5. Sprinkle the spices onto the dough and continue kneading.
  6. Store in a large zip-lock bag or other air tight container.


  1. How fun! I've made homemade playdough, but never like this:)

  2. This is a great activity and I bet it smells yummy! I am a new follower from For the Kids Fridays. Vicky from Mess For Less

  3. yum - I can imagine the delicious scent! would love for you to share on - the Sunday Showcase-


  4. This looks AWESOME!! I am going to try this! I'd love for you to link up at my TGIF Linky Party -
    Beth =-)