Pumpkin spice, cinnamon apple and mulled cider – we love the scents of fall and just couldn’t get enough of this warm and cozy autumn-scented salt dough recipe.
Autumn-Scented Salt Dough Recipe
To prep, we first gathered our ingredients:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup of salt
- food coloring (in red, orange and yellow)
- 2-4 tablespoons of cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon of cloves
- 2 teaspoons of ginger
- 1 cup of water
Making the Salt Dough
This recipe is fairly forgiving, so if you’re able to embrace the mess, it’s a great way for little ones to practice measuring, leveling and mixing.
To make the dough my 3 year-old, Q, simply added the flour, salt, cinnamon and allspice to a large bowl and whisked until combined.
For most of the spices, I had Q measure them so he could practice. For the cinnamon, he just wanted to shake it out and since it’s not a precise recipe that was a-ok.
Once all the dry ingredient were added from the salt dough recipe, Q measured and mixed in the water. He then mixed the dough with a spoon as best as he could until it was just too hard.
We dumped it on the already flour-covered table and kneaded it until well combined. The dough should be soft and pliable but not sticky. If it is, add a little flour at a time and knead it until it no longer sticks to the table.
We then divided the dough into 4 sections, one for each fall color, and added the cloves and a touch more cinnamon to color the brown dough. We added ginger and yellow food color for the yellow dough, and just added the food color for the red and orange dough. It ended up taking quite a bit of red and orange food color to get a nice vibrant color.
Baking the Salt Dough
I had grand plans of making a cute spicy scented leaf garland for our mantle, but apparently my kiddos have a mind of their own. They both wanted to make cinnamon and ginger cookies to sell in their pretend bakery. Who was I to get in the way?!
My 5 year-old rolled and cut out several dozen different shapes while my 3 year-old simply liked to pat the dough flat with his hands to make his leaves. The thicker the dough, the longer it takes to dry so keep this in mind when deciding what to make.
I showed my daughter how to use a small straw from a juice box to punch a hole in the leaves in case she wanted to hang them (perhaps on a garland) after she was done playing bakery.
Once all the leaves were cut and transferred to a baking sheet, we baked them at 140 degrees for a couple hours, turning them halfway through.
No matter how tempted you are to speed up the drying process by raising the temperature, don’t do it. It will cause your dough to puff up and even bubble. The lower and slower you go, the more even they bake.
Once dry, my daughter wanted to embellish her cookies with a bit of glue and glitter “sprinkles.”I have a feeling we won’t be making a garland anytime soon. The salt dough recipe was the perfect activity for a fall day!
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