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Grab a barrel full of old-fashioned pop with the frothy, full-bodied textures of root beer and vanilla play dough! Remember A&W root beer floats as a kid? Today’s invitation to create with homemade scented play dough explores creamy textures, classic sensory play, and rich scented sweetness.
Root Beer Play Dough Recipe:
- 1 cup flour (we use gluten-free flour – brown rice or a mixture)
- 1 T cream of tartar
- 1/2 cup salt
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil (we use avocado oil)
- 1 cup water
- Root Beer Candy Flavoring
- Brown Gel Icing or Food Coloring or Liquid Water Colors (our new, safer favorite!)
Vanilla Play Dough Recipe: (same as above; omit root beer flavor & food coloring)
- Vanilla Extract
Root Beer Play Materials:
A root beer float wouldn’t be a float without vanilla whip cream play dough. Although it looks yummy enough to slurp down, please don’t! It’s all food ingredients, but not intended for eating purposes.
- In a heavy saucepan, mix together the flour, cream of tartar, and salt.
- Add the water and oil and place the saucepan over medium heat. Add root beer candy flavoring and food coloring or gel. I wanted the brown to be very dark, so I added 1-2 drops of black food coloring. Not necessary, but if using the brown gel or food coloring, it may be a little lighter.
- Stir continuously until the dough starts to thicken. At 3 minutes it will still be runny; 6 minutes it will begin to stick to spoon and saucepan; continue stirring and pulling the dough off the sides of the pan; 8-9 minutes it will form into a tacky, slightly shiny ball. Once this happens, it’s ready.
- Remove from heat and let it cool on wax paper or foil for 15-20 minutes. Be sure to test the center of the dough to ensure it’s cool enough before giving it to children.
- Repeat for the vanilla play dough, omitting the food coloring and root beer candy flavoring. Instead, just add vanilla extract. Above is one batch of each flavor.
Once your doughs are made, it’s time to explore and create! Simply, add ice cream scoopers, spoons, bowls, dough cutters and rollers, cake decorating tips (we omitted later), and mugs. This is not a sponsored post. But, aren’t these A&W root beer mugs fantastic?!
Add stripped paper straws and ice cream scoopers for a completely old-fashioned experience. The vanilla play dough severs as the ice cream and whip cream for the root beer floats.
To make the whip cream swirl we used a Play-Doh EZ Molder. No tools? Just roll it out like a worm and bend it.
There’s endless possibilities for scenting play dough inexpensively with candy flavoring. The scents reminded me of frothy, delicious root beer floats! C began rolling out his root beer play dough using straws, ladles, and a whisk to explore.
Barrels of fun, right? Homemade play dough is so easy to make and it’s a great sensory activity for kids.
He loved the ice cream scoop too! The creamy texture and rush of vanilla really enhanced his play experience.
Who new paper straws would be so fun? Our simple and fragrant sensory dough creates a fun invitation to create and explore. He’s really getting into doughs lately, so we’ll be experimenting with new scents!
The play dough was so soft; it created textured swirl marked on the mugs.
Here’s C’s final root beer vanilla float play dough creations! He ventured back in time to explore sensory and pretend play with the classic scents and frothy textures of root beer floats!
What’s your favorite childhood drink?
Looking for more play recipes? Here’s a few of our favorites: