Scented Play Dough Recipes – A Kid Friendly Thing To Do

Ah! The wonderful scents of the holidays. I still love walking into the house, and smelling those comforting smells, like bread baking in the oven, or a fresh baked pie.

This is a fun activity that will pack those warm cozy scents into a can – literally! Homemade play dough is such a great way to spend quality time around the table!  I think you’ll find it’s easy, fun, and might do a better job than the play dough from the store!

These are some Homemade Play-dough Recipes “that smell – Oh so good” to try out.


Use This Basic Play Dough Recipe – As a base! It’s my favorite one! The kids can participate in ALL of the making, ’cause there is NO COOKING required!

play dough recipe

3-4 cups of flour
1 Cup of salt
1Tb. of Cream of Tartar
2 Tb. of oil (baby oil can be substituted to make the play dough softer & will prevent mold, the color will hold better)
1 and 1/2 Cups of Warm Tap Water


Mix the first three, dry ingredients.  Only use 3 cups of flour-to start.
Mix warm water, & oil
Let mixture cool and knead, add to the dry stuff, and start kneading it together
If the play dough is sticky, add the 4th cup of flour little by little, .  It should have the consistency of bread dough!


Cinnamon Scented Play Dough:

play dough recipe
To make the above Basic play dough version smell like Cinnamon!

  • You could…Use cinnamon tea as a substitute for the warm water! I know…fun, right?!
  • You can use a little brown food coloring – if you want, but the cinnamon will color the dough for you, so hold off on food coloring. Decide whether or not you want to add more color after you’ve kneaded the cinnamon spice into the dough.
  • Just add 2 teaspoons of cinnamon to the dry ingredients! – More if you want!
  •  Add 1 teaspoon of cinnamon extract – if you have it – NOT required at all – this will just make the cinnamon smell more intense for those cinnamon lovers out there! You’re out there – you know you are!

NOTE: the color of the cinnamon will affect your color outcome – I usually just set some aside to have the cinnamon scent.  These are a pretty light brown color.


play dough recipe

Again, make the basic play dough recipe at the very tippy-top & gather your pumpkin pie spices!

First, Color your play dough with some orange food coloring to resemble a pumpkin

You’re gonna need:

  • cinnamon
  • ginger
  • allspice
  • nutmeg
  • pumpkin pie spice

Now, start shaking the spices in – a teaspoon of each
For me, I added an extra teaspoon of nutmeg and ginger to get a wonderful pumpkin pie aroma!

Adjust these spices to your nose’s personal preference! The true aroma won’t come through until the dough has been sealed for a bit. It gets strong in a container.

Orange Spice Play dough:

play dough recipe

Make the above Basic Play Dough Recipe – the one at the tippy top!
Color your play dough orange
with food coloring, unless you want another color. I just thought orange would fit the orange smell.
Gather some spices and extracts: I used –

  • Orange Extract
  • Cinnamon Extract
  • Ground clove spice

If you want to know the measurements I used: 1&1/4 t of orange extract, 1/4 t of cinnamon extract, 1/4 t of ground cloves, but again…adjust it to your favorite smells!

Chocolate Scented Play Dough:

play dough recipe

You’ll Need:

Make the Basic Play Dough Recipe, and Add:

  • 1/2 Cup of Cocoa or the powdered chocolate for chocolate milk (Nesquick works great)
  • Do they make chocolate extract? Probably, there’s an extract for just about everything. If you have some, you could add a teaspoon for even more chocolate deliciousness!

Note: The cocoa will color the play dough for you. This will be a chocolate brown color.

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Some other fun ideas to put a twist in your play dough activity!

  • Add glitter for some sparkle fun!
  • Don’t add the color until the dough is in a zip-lock bag.  Let the air out of the bag, and let the kids knead the color into the dough.  Either by putting their hand inside the bag to do it, or pressing on the bag from the outside. It has a fun marble look to it, at first.
  • Use any extract scent to make your own original holiday scent!  Almond would be so nice for a sugar cookie smell!

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