Art Crafts

Ultra Smooth “Clay” Recipe

If you’ve ever made salt dough as a kid, then this will probably bring back lots of memories for you! While I love salt dough, and have made my fair share of homemade ornaments over the years, I don’t necessarily love the bumps and cracks associated with it.

If you’re looking for a crack-free alternative to clay, then you will love this faux “clay” dough recipe. It can be baked in the oven or left to air dry overnight. It also takes gel-dye much better than polymer clay and the colors seem to be much more vibrant than any other recipe I’ve used. Since this recipe doesn’t use salt, the dough is ultra smooth like regular clay. The only difference is that it’s softer and easier to mold, which the kiddos love!

Homemade Clay Dough Recipe

For this recipe you only need three ingredients: corn starch, water, and baking powder. You will also need some gel-colored dye (optional), air-tight containers for storage, and a pan to heat the dough in.

  • 1/2 cup corn starch
  • 1 cup baking soda
  • 3/4 cup water
  • cookie cutters
  • silicone mat or parchment paper
  • gel food coloring (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Heat the corn starch, water, and baking powder together over medium heat.
  3. Stir frequently until a soft ball forms, resembling mashed potatoes.
  4. Remove pan from the heat and place dough into a bowl to cool. Don’t wait too long or it will dry out.
  5. Once cooled, knead the dough until it is firm and pliable.
  6. Roll out the dough so that it is 1/4″ thick on a silicone mat. If the dough sticks, add a little corn starch to the mat.
  7. Bake your shapes in the oven for 60 minutes, flipping halfway through until fully cooked on both sides.
  8. Store extra dough in an air tight container.


I’ve experimented a bit with this recipe and found the following tips to be helpful for beginners:

  • Dough that is thinner than 1/4″ may burn in the oven, or become brittle, breaking easily when fully cooked.
  • Turn the oven down to 175 if cooking thinner shapes.
  • The thicker the dough, the longer it will take to cook.
  • Use aluminum foil as a filler for making creations thicker than 1/4″.

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