Home > Sensory Play for Kids > Easy 2-Ingredient Apple Scented Playdough for Kids

Easy 2-Ingredient Apple Scented Playdough for Kids

Playtime just got a whole lot more exciting – and aromatic! Introducing our 2-Ingredient Apple Scented Playdough Recipe, a delightful twist to your child’s normal homemade playdough. Perfect for autumn or any time you want to evoke the crispness of fresh apples, this playdough is not only super easy to whip up, but it’s also safe and non-toxic for little hands. Dive into the magic of sensory play while capturing the essence of orchard-fresh apples. Let’s get kneading!

Apple Playdough Recipe

We have included affiliate links to some of the products and resources as an associate we may earn from qualifying purchases.

Sensory play is integral to a child’s development, nurturing their ability to process and understand the world around them. Apple-scented playdough takes this a step further, providing a multi-dimensional sensory experience. The texture of the playdough allows kids to strengthen their fine motor skills as they knead, roll, and shape. Then at the same time, the apple aroma engages their olfactory senses, associating the act of play with the comforting and familiar scent of fresh apples.

child playing with apple scented playdough at the table pulling it apart and rolling it with their fingers.

The activation of the sense of smell combined with touch helps kids with their emotions, producing a calming environment. It is also shown to help with memory as well as the benefits of fine motor skills and of course the pure fun element of using the playdough.

How Long Does the Playdough

Because this playdough is made with washing-up liquid (dish soap) instead of the normal salt and cream of tartar this playdough doesn’t last as long. It has no preservatives and we found it only lasted a few days before the scent started to go off.

If you wish to make something that lasts long you could use our autumn-scented playdough recipe and add in some drops of apple flavouring (check out our favourite brand here) or use the saucepan method that I have included below.

Is the apple scent safe for kids with allergies or sensitivities?

This will very much depend on the liquid dish soap that you use – we have a sensitive skin version so my little one with sensitive skin can use it. Instead of washing-up liquid you could use shampoo or conditioner with an apple scent that you know your child isn’t allergic to.

Can I add other natural ingredients to enhance the apple scent or introduce new aromas to the playdough?

It’s easy to add new ingredients to the playdough, for example, you could add in some ground cinnamon and you will have apple pie spice playdough. Or how about switching out the apple-scented washing-up liquid and using lemon or lime for a refreshing summery playdough scent?

Storing the Playdough Once Made

It’s easy to store this playdough – but remember it won’t last as long as our traditional homemade play-dough recipe which has natural preservatives in it.

I tend to make up small batches of this only and then store for about a week in an airtight container in the fridge between playtimes. I then bring it out each day and knead it a little as find that it can become a bit hard for little hands when it is cold.

Apples and playdough ball on a wooden chopping board

Apple Tree Play Dough Mats

Why not combine the playdough with some learning – Our set of apple playdough mats is great for working on number skills with your toddlers and preschoolers.

image for apple playdough mats on Rainy Day Mum

2 Ingredient Homemade Apple-Scented Playdough

It’s so simple to make this 2-ingredient apple scented play dough recipe with washing-up liquid and flour. It smells just like you have used real apples in the mixture and is great for your little ones to use for play.

If you wish for a traditional homemade recipe then check out the one below as I’ve included that as well.

Easy 2 ingredient Apple Scented Playdough for kids. Perfect for Autumn and Fall themed Sensory Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers.

Materials Need for Apple-Scented Play Dough

  • 1 cup flour (plain or all-purpose is best(
  • 1/2 cup of either Apple Scented Dish-Soap or Apple Scented Shampoo
  • Green or Red Food Coloring
  • Optional: A tablespoon of Apple Pie Spice Mix or Ground Cinnamon for extra sensory experience.
ingredients for making homemade apple scented playdough for kids.

How to Make 2-Ingredient Apple Playdough

1. Add the flour to a bowl.

pouring flour from a cup measure into a mixing bowl

2. Add in the washing-up liquid (dish soap)

flour and washing up liquid in a bowl to make some apple scented playdough.

3. Then using your hands bring the mixture together into a ball.

Bringing the homemade playdough together into a bowl.

4. Add in some drops of green or red food colouring and then bring out onto a table and knead till it is fully combined.

Child playing with green apple scented playdough on a table.

This dough is much lighter than the playdough I normally make it also leaves your hands soft and doesn’t dry them out like normal playdough does.

Pinterest image to promote Apple Playdough with Just 2 Ingredients showing a ball of the playdough and 3 apples to the side.

Traditional Homemade Apple Scented Playdough

You can use a traditional homemade playdough recipe too. This playdough will last longer, however, it’s not as soft and takes more to make.

Ingredients for Traditional Apple Pie Playdough Recipe

  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 1 tbsp of sunflower or vegetable oil or olive oil (but this will add an additional scent)
  • 1 cup water
  • Apple Flavouring
  • Red or Green Food Coloring
  • Optional – Teaspoon cinnamon or apple pie spice

How to Make Traditional Homemade Scented Playdough

1. Add the dry ingredients to a mixing bowl and stir together

2. In a pan over medium heat add the water, food colouring and of your choice, apple flavouring and the oil together stir to combine.

3. Pour the dry ingredients into the saucepan and mix together until a dough starts to form.

4. Remove from the heat and then allow the dough to cool a bit.

5. Knead for about 5 minutes until the dough is smooth.

apple pie play dough with some real apples on a white background.

More Playdough Recipes for Kids

Why not make some of our other Playdough Recipes

Edible Play Dough Recipe made with marshmallows
homemade grape scented purple kool-aid playdough for sensory play
a stack of coloured and scented playdough ready to use made at home with packed of Jell-o

Ideas for Apple Activities with the Playdough

simple apple playdough you can make at home using this 2-ingredient recipe

Although the playdough is great for fine motor skills and it smells amazing I like using it with the kids with some hands-on activities. Here are some suggestions for activities you can do with the kids using the 2-ingredient playdough in a maths centre this week.


Use a rolling pin and roll, manipulate and work with the play dough to create some 3D shapes or use some shape cookie cutters to create 2D shapes – this is a fantastic set that includes different sizes of the shapes so leads you to talk about measurement language as well as shape language with your kids.

Sensory Bins

Why not add the apple playdough into a sensory bin – check out these apple sensory tubs for some inspiration. It would be easy to switch out the plastic apples and pom poms in many for balls of the play dough adding another sensory element to the bins.

A simple 2-ingredient, super soft and smooth apple scented playdough recipe and suggestions for math-based activities for toddlers and preschool kids.

2-Ingredient Quick and Easy Apple Scented Playdough Recipe

Cerys Parker
A simple 2-ingredient, super soft and smooth apple scented playdough recipe and suggestions for math-based activities for toddlers and preschool kids.
4.50 from 12 votes
Prep Time 1 minute
Total Time 1 minute


  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • ½ cup either dish soap or shampoo apple scented
  • Optional: Green and Red Food Colouring


  • Add the soap/shampoo to the flour
  • Mix together
  • Knead to a smooth dough
  • Add food colouring if you wish
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!


  1. This was my first attempt at making my own play dough. I had fun making it and hopefully my students will enjoy using it to make little apples to put onto apple trees tomorrow in math. The recipe was super easy!

  2. How amazing that it only needs two ingredients! No more remembering how many tablespoons etc of anything else!

  3. Last time we tried to make playdough with washing up liquid it was a huge disaster but kids enjoyed the mess. Think I’ll have to give it another go.

  4. This is a great recipe! My kids love any kind of play dough!

  5. Oh I haven’t tried this with AP flour – only cornstarch. Lovely!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.