I saw Play Create Explore's Ice Cream dough a while back on Pinterest and mentally filed it away, but then my friend Emily did it here and it looked so fun we just had to jump on the bandwagon.

This is a super fun dough to play with, but I'd really recommend only doing this activity with children who are old enough to understand that it is not really ice cream, and it is not in any way edible, because it really, really does look like ice cream.  See:

S was SO excited to try out ice cream dough.  While I prepped the dough, I had her work on making sprinkles by cutting colored foam into little bits.

You can find the official recipe here at Play Create Explore, but I just eyeballed it and that worked fine (I am all for shortcuts that produce fewer dishes, hahaha).  As far as the conditioner goes, I just grabbed whatever was cheapest.  Play Create Explore made traditional scents (check out how here), but I was curious if Kool Aid would work, so I told S we'd make grape, cherry, and vanilla ice cream (for vanilla I was just planning on leaving it plain).  

The trouble with my plan occurred when I first squirted the conditioner into the bowl.  Phew.  That stuff was HEAVILY perfumed.  So please note - if you'd like to add scent to your dough - check the smell of the conditioner first.  They all seem to be scented in general, but something with vanilla or coconut or just a faint scent base is going to work better than what we had.  You could still smell the Kool Aid scent, but it didn't smell awesome paired with the strong perfume scent of the conditioner.  It did, however, still look fabulous!

S made the foam sprinkles and then I also added a bowl of colorful plastic pony beads and three ice cream cones, three ice cream bowls, and a little ice cream scoop.  The ice cream scoop set we have is amazing - we use it with moon sand all the time - and it's only $5 on Amazon (click here for an affiliate link to the ice cream scoop set). 

S eagerly got to work creating several fantastic ice cream cones and sundaes.  She was very excited to use some of each of the "flavors" and true to form, they marbled together just like real ice cream!  

Despite its appearance, the dough is really similar to playdough, so it's very easy to work with.  No melting!  :)

I couldn't resist making a cone of my own.  Yum!

And here's S with one of her handmade ice cream cones.

It definitely looks good enough to eat!  (But please don't eat it!)

S was seriously over the moon for this project.  She spent nearly two hours playing with it, and even helped me wash the dishes when she was done.  :)

We had so much fun with this activity that we were inspired to create our own frozen, edible (but NOT tasty!) Pretend Frozen/Melting Ice Cream for imaginative play.

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All activities here are activities I feel are safe for my own children.  As your child's parents/guardians, you will need to decide what you feel is safe for your family.  I always encourage contacting your child's pediatrician for guidance if you are not sure about the safety/age appropriateness of an activity. All activities on this blog are intended to be performed with adult supervision.  Appropriate and reasonable caution should be used when activities call for the use of materials that could potentially be harmful, such as scissors, or items that could present a choking risk (small items), or a drowning risk (water activities), and with introducing a new food/ingredient to a child (allergies).  Observe caution and safety at all times.  The author and blog disclaim liability for any damage, mishap, or injury that may occur from engaging in any of these activities on this blog.


  1. LOVE this! I get all giddy when people try it and love it haha! Your's looks amazing! Adding kool-aid--awesome idea!

    1. Yay! I also love seeing people try my ideas. So fun. Yes, it was a HUGE hit! And Kool Aid made for some unconventional flavors (but hey, I figure there have to be grape and cherry ice creams out there since there's basically every other flavor), but it was super cheap! :)

  2. It definitely looks good enough to eat! We are definitely going to try this!

    1. Thank you, Ann! Yes, please do try it! So fun!


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