Fun Fall Sensory Activity: DIY Pumpkin Spice Play Dough

I’m always on the lookout for fun and inexpensive activities to keep my toddler busy, and I never know when or where inspiration will strike. One recent day we were in the drive through for my favorite fall indulgence: a pumpkin flavored latte, when my daughter asked what we could do together when we got back home.

Eureka! Pumpkin spice play dough was born.

I know I’m not the first to conceive of this idea so it’s hardly original, but I had fun coming up with just the right recipe. I’m sharing it today!


1 cup water

1 tbsp vegetable oil

1/2 cup salt

1 tbsp cream of tartar

1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Orange food coloring

2 cups flour (more if necessary)


In a medium saucepan, combine the water, oil, salt, cream of tartar, pumpkin pie spice and food coloring. Heat until warm. Remove from heat, then add flour one cup at a time until it is smooth and of the desired consistency.

It keeps up to 6 months!

We had fun playing with our play dough, making shapes and exploring its texture and aroma.

This little guy came over for a playdate and loved our DIY play dough (it just didn't taste very good, which he learned the hard way!)

It’s a great, easy fall activity!

Mary Lauren Weimer is a social worker turned mother turned writer. Her blog, My 3 Little Birds, encourages moms to put down the baby books for a moment and tell their own stories. She writes about all things toddler at Babble’s Toddler Times. Connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.


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