Ice Cream Playdough – It looks real!

This activity was so much more fun than I even expected, and it kept the kids entertained for over an hour.

The dough is very easy to make and surprising realistic. It scoops exactly like real ice cream, and with a bit of added colouring, you can turn it into your favourite ‘flavours’. I love strawberry and mint so naturally, I went with pink and green colouring.

Instead of putting it on the activity table on its own, I turned it into an ice cream parlour with things I found around the house. I dressed the table with a lovely piece of material, included some plastic treats from my daughters toy collection, some ice cream scoops, muffin cases, bowls, ice cream cones and sprinkles.

The kids took turns swapping between being the shop keeper and the customers and it was a wonderful role play that kept going and going.

It is also fantastic play for young kids who put things in their mouths as this won’t hurt them at all if they decide to taste a little. It is however, important to stress that your kids shouldn’t really eat this dough like they would real ice cream as it’s just for play.  

Fun for:

  • Birthday party activity
  • Birthday party favour (do up kits to give – see here for a similar idea)
  • School holiday activity
  • Just because it’s fun
  • Prank!

What you need:

  • Ready-made frosting. I used a Betty Crocker 435g tub of vanilla frosting
  • Approx 4 cups icing sugar
  • Food colouring
  • Ice cream cones (or small bowls/cupcake cases), sprinkles, scoops and anything else you need for play

Ice cream Play Dough

  1. In a large bowl, add half of the frosting (which is approx. ¾ cup). Leave the other half for another batch. The 435g frosting tub I used made 2 batches of dough so I made one pink and the other green.
  1. Using the dough hooks on your mixer, gradually add in 2 cups of icing sugar.  Mix until the dough comes together is not sticky. I actually used slightly less than 2 cups so keep feeling it until it is no longer sticky.
  1. Add in a few drops of colouring and mix until combined. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  1. Repeat process with remaining frosting and icing sugar. This time, add a different colour. Transfer into a bowl and you are ready for play.
  1. Set up a scene using your different flavoured ‘ice cream’ along with cones, sprinkles, scoops, bowls, muffin cups, spoons and whatever you associate with eating ice cream. Let their little imaginations run wild as they order, create and serve.

Ice cream Play Dough - it looks real!

Ice cream Play Dough - it looks real!

Ice cream Play Dough - it looks real!

Ice cream Play Dough - it looks real!

Ice cream Play Dough - it looks real!

Ice cream Play Dough - it looks real!

Ice cream Play Dough - it looks real!


Playdough Recipes

Playdough Kits

Playdough Party Favour Idea

Natural Playdough Landscapes

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Amanda started on this journey when her 3rd child was born, and feeding a family of 5 became even more of a challenge with three children under 3 1/2 years of age! She started working on a list of recipes that were simple and affordable that she could make ahead of time so she wasn’t stuck in the kitchen at 5pm when the household duties kicked up a notch. Amanda’s goal is to create simple meals that anyone can cook and enjoy without spending hours in the kitchen. Her recipes are perfect for that busy weeknight dinner, snacks to fill the lunch boxes or for students learning to cook. It’s simple home cooking at its best to free up your time to enjoy the fun things in life — your kids! Check out her cookbooks at and her Simple Home Cook Facebook page here:

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