Need an easy taste-safe sensory activity for your baby, toddler or preschooler? Find out how to make edible chocolate frosting play dough with only 3 ingredients—no cooking required! (And it’s perfect for Valentine’s Day.)
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It’s hard to believe that up until a few years ago, I had never heard of taste-safe sensory activities. These days, it seems like I’m constantly coming up with new ideas to try!
Making things taste-safe was never really a concern with our eldest because she’s never been the type to put things in her mouth. We were always able to give her regular play dough, slime and kinetic sand without having to worry that she would try to eat it.
But after our second was born, it became clear pretty quickly that we’d need to find new ways to entertain her. And because she’s always wanted to do the same activities as her big sister, that involved finding taste-safe alternatives for all our go-to sensory materials.
They are now four and five years old, and we’ve had the opportunity to do lots of edible sensory play over the past few years.
Edible frosting play dough has been a definite favourite ever since we first tried it… which is why we always pick up a container or two of frosting whenever we stop by the dollar store!
There are actually many things to love about frosting play dough.
For one thing, it doesn’t involve heating or cooking of any kind, which means that even young kids can help their parents make it. For another, it only calls for 3 ingredients: frosting, cornstarch and powdered sugar. (No cream of tartar required!)
It also happens to be fully edible, which makes it great for babies, toddlers and preschoolers who want to be just like their older siblings.
Honestly, my only complaint about this easy edible play dough recipe is that it tastes too good and my kids always want to eat it instead of playing with it. This is especially true of the chocolate variant in this article, because who wouldn’t want to nibble on silky smooth playable chocolate?
But considering all the other great things about this edible play dough, I think I can learn to live with that!
How to Make Edible Chocolate Frosting Play Dough
Here’s what you’ll need to whip up a batch of no-cook chocolate frosting play dough at home—without salt or cream of tartar:
- Chocolate frosting
- Icing sugar (also called “powdered sugar” or “confectioner’s sugar”)
- Glycerin (optional)
- Chocolate sprinkles (optional)
Note: The frosting we used didn’t contain any gluten, meaning this recipe could be a good gluten-free alternative to regular play dough. However, please be sure to check the ingredients for yourself before giving it to a child who is sensitive or intolerant to gluten!
1. Combine Cornstarch & Icing Sugar
Start by combining ½ cup of cornstarch and ½ cup of icing sugar in a medium bowl and stirring them with a spoon.
2. Add Frosting
Add 1 cup of frosting to the dry ingredients and stir until combined.
This may be a little difficult to do with a spoon, at least initially. If this is the case, try combining them using your fingers. Just make sure your hands are clean and you’ve removed any jewelry first, because the mixture will be pretty sticky!
3. Adjust Texture
After you combine the icing and dry ingredients, the play dough will probably be too sticky to play with.
If this is the case, add a bit of cornstarch or icing sugar, one tablespoon at a time, and mix it in with your fingers until well combined. (We ended up adding about ¼ cup.)
4. Knead Play Dough
Keep adding cornstarch or icing sugar and kneading the play dough until it has a silky-smooth texture.
You’ll know you’ve reached the right consistency when the dough is no longer sticky, but instead feels smooth and stretchy.
And if ever your dough starts to feel a bit too firm and you can’t easily squish or press down on it, simply add a bit more frosting and knead it in the same way until the play dough feels more stretchy!
5. Add Glycerin (Optional)
This step is optional, but if you want your play dough to feel extra smooth, consider adding a couple drops of glycerin and working it in with your hands.
We have found that glycerine isn’t needed when making play dough using vanilla frosting, but play dough made using chocolate frosting isn’t quite as stretchy and glycerin helps to improve its texture.
If ever you don’t have any glycerine, there’s no need to worry! Your play dough will still be smooth and stretchy enough to play with.
6. Add Sprinkles (Optional)
For added fun and texture, I decided to sprinkle some chocolate sprinkles onto the play dough. But once again, this is totally optional.
Then, I gave it to the kids to play with! They had so much fun flattening the play dough with a rolling pin and using cookie cutters to cut it into fun shapes.
(And of course, they enjoyed sneaking a few bites—because what would be the fun of making edible play dough if they couldn’t taste it?)
How to Store Edible Chocolate Frosting Play Dough
Our kids loved this play dough so much that they wanted to play with it again and again.
If your kids feel the same way and the play dough is still in good condition after they’re done with it, you may be able to store it in an airtight container for a couple days. (If you keep the container in the fridge, you’ll have to bring the play dough back to room temperature before they can play with it.)
This play dough does dry out pretty quickly and I’ve found that adding a few drops of glycerin can help bring back some of its stretchiness.
That being said, frosting play dough is meant to be an activity that you set up for that day and then throw out once your kids are done playing with, so you may just have to discard it and make another batch the next time your kids want to play with it.
Edible Chocolate Frosting Play Dough
- 1 cup chocolate frosting
- ½ cup icing sugar
- ¾ cup cornstarch
- 2-3 drops glycerin optional
- chocolate sprinkles optional
- Combine icing sugar and ½ cup cornstarch in a medium bowl and stir with a spoon.
- Add frosting and stir until combined. If needed, continuing kneading with your hands until the dry ingredients are fully incorporated.
- Add more cornstarch, one tablespoon at a time, and knead until play dough is soft enough to play with and no longer feels sticky.
- Keep kneading until the dough feels super soft and smooth. Add a few drops of glycerin if desired to make it even smoother, then add chocolate sprinkles (optional) and start playing immediately.
Related Taste-Safe Sensory Activities
Looking for more taste-safe sensory activities to do with your toddler? Check out these articles:
- Edible Birthday Cake Play Dough
- Taste-Safe Sensory Foam for Babies & Toddlers
- 2-Ingredient Fake Snow
- Edible Water Beads for Sensory Play
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