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DIY Holiday Play-dough and Mini Figurines Play Set - Safari Ltd®

DIY Holiday Play-dough and Mini Figurines Play Set

Simple & Fun Christmas Play-dough

Play-dough is one of my family’s favorite activities to do together! My kids love to get involved in the whole process - they help me make our homemade dough and love to choose their favorite bits and pieces (including animal figurines!) to play with it. In this post I will share how to put a holiday twist on my classic play-dough recipe by making scented dough!

We made a peppermint scented green dough and a gingerbread scented brown dough for our Christmas play-dough kit. Read below to learn how you can make both to play with your miniature animals!


Christmas Play-dough Ingredients

Christmas Tree Play-dough:

  • 2 cups flour 
  • ½ cup salt
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 tsp cream of tartar
  • 2 cups water
  • Green food coloring
  • Peppermint extract (can also use peppermint oils!)

Gingerbread Play-dough: 

  • 2 cups flour
  • ½ cup salt
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 tsp cream of tartar
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/8 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp ground ginger

How To. Let's make some dough!


To make your homemade play-dough you will need: a large, deep pan (mine is similar to a wok in shape), a sturdy spoon or spatula, a whisk, all of the ingredients listed above, plus parchment paper. The process for making both of these types of dough is the same, though the ingredients vary.

I have made play-dough with both bread flour and all-purpose flour and find that both work fine! Bread flour will make for a slightly softer and stretchier dough. Follow the process below to make each of your fun scented Christmas play-doughs!

Step 1: Combine all ingredients in your pan and whisk to combine. Be sure to break up as many flour lumps as you can while whisking. When I am adding food coloring, I often add the coloring to the water and then pour it into my dough mixture. This helps to spread your color out! Add as much color as you like, but the color will darken some as the dough cooks. 

Step 2: Cook on medium heat on your stove top. Stir very frequently (almost constantly). As you stir, scrape across the bottom of your pan with your spoon. The dough will slowly start to form a ball in the center of your pan as you scrape and stir. Continue cooking until the dough ball no longer appears wet. This usually takes 6-8 minutes, but could vary depending on your stove and pan.

Step 3: Lay out a piece of parchment paper and dump the cooked dough ball onto it. Allow the dough to cool in a ball for about 5 minutes. Once it is cool enough to touch, begin to knead the dough with your hands. Knead for about 5 minutes to help smooth out any lumps and soften your dough. 

Step 4: Flatten the dough into a pancake (2-3” thick) and cover with another piece of parchment paper. Allow the dough to cool completely. Once totally cooled you can play with it! When you are not playing with your dough, keep it in an air-tight container or zipper bag. Properly stored dough can be used for around 6 months!


Once our Christmas play-dough was cool, I put together a play-dough kit for my kids. I love using these boxes from Ikea to store play-dough! In this kit, I placed both colors of dough, buttons, plastic googly eyes and Safari Ltd. Good Luck Minis for decorating! I also added cookie cutters and a small rolling pin.

I included Christmas tree cookie cutters for the green play dough and cookie cutters shaped like gingerbread men and women for the brown dough. You can use any cookie cutter shapes you want. As an alternative, roll out the dough and use a butter knife to cut out the shapes you want your kids to decorate. 

We had such a good time playing with this set up! The Good Luck Minis are the PERFECT size for ornaments for these play-dough Christmas trees. I also love how much vocabulary practice my kids get each time we play with our Good Luck Minis.

The set includes such a nice variety of different things for us to talk about as we play together. I’ll keep this festive kit together all season long and we can’t wait to keep playing with it!

About The Writer

This post is by Emily Limer. Emily is a preschool teacher and mom of two toddlers who love to play with Safari Ltd. animals! You can follow her on Instagram @makingwithmommy for more kids craft and play ideas.

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