I’m crafty like a fox and that pretty much is the beginning and end of my arts and crafts ability, however, I have a toddler so I have to do them. The holidays make the best season for crafts because they bring focus on dreary winter days, are easily inspired and can be given to friends and family as passable thoughtful gifts. A total win!
Today, we made Better than Salt-Dough. And it is actually better, only the truth here, folks. I like this activity as it is minimal effort and involves all things my two year old likes: measuring, mixing, dictating (which cookie cutters to use) and painting/colouring. And the decorating portion can be done days later thus making it a two-day activity and you the most amazing parent ever.
So today we made the dough and during naptime i am drying our shapes in the oven to speed curing. Next time my kiddo sees them they will be ready for glitter.
Better than Salt-Dough
- 1/2 cup cornstarch
- 1 cup baking soda
- 3/4 cup water
If you want to make colored dough, add the food coloring to the water before mixing it in.
In a medium sized pot combine the cornstarch, baking soda, and water. Stir over medium heat. After a couple of minutes, the mixture will begin to thicken. When it looks like smooth, mashed potatoes, remove the pot from the heat. Spoon the ball of dough into a bowl and cover it with a damp cloth or plastic wrap until it’s cool. When it’s cool, knead it on a smooth surface until smooth and silky (I didn’t knead long enough the first time I made this dough and it wasn’t as smooth to work with). Add more cornstarch if it feels too sticky and/or sticks to the surface.
I then rolled flat with rolling pin and parchment paper and used cookie cutters. To make a hole for the string to make tree ornaments I used a straw. Can also be used for handprints for extra ‘awwwwww’.
You can leave to air-dry over night or bake in over at 175 degrees F for about an hour (turn over about halfway).
You’ll have grandparents swooning over how amazing your budding artist is. No need to tell them that it was a totally selfish activity because it kept your kids quietly entertained for hours.