DIY activity for kids: Salt clay

This is a great activity for rainy days and only requires a few ingredients that you already have in your kitchen.

It is also a great way to make a handmade gift (think granny’s birthday or mother’s day) and I am already looking forward to making it again ahead of Christmas to decorate our tree.


  • 2 glasses of flour
  • 1 glass of fine salt
  • Half glass of warm water
  • Food colouring or paint (optional)

Preparing the clay

Stir all the ingredients together, gradually incorporating the water. Mix by hand or with a wooden spoon until you obtain a firm, elastic dough that doesn’t stick to fingers. You might need to adjust the quantities slightly: if it is too sticky, add some flour. If it is too dry, add some water.

If you wish to make colored dough (like Playdough), break the dough in a few balls and add a few drops of food coloring to each ball and knead until the color is evenly distributed. I like to play with plain dough to encourage painting once the dough is dry.

The dough will keep well for weeks as long as it is stored in the fridge, wrapped in plastic. I always keep some in our fridge, as a no-mess back up plan for rainy days.

Drying or baking

Salt dough can either be air-dried or baked in the oven (a quicker alternative).

If you prefer baking, try leaving the objects to dry at least 12 hours before baking. That will prevent shrinking (I didn’t wait and it turned out fine but it did shrink a little) and bake at low temperature (110°C). Baking time will depend on the size of the object but here are some simple rules while baking:

  • the longer you’ll air dry, the quicker the baking.
  • the bigger the object, the longer it will take to dry so keep an eye on the oven to prevent burning.


Once it has been dried out and hardened, salt dough can be painted with regular paints.

To read the Indonesian translation, click here


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