There are several recipes to make homemade clay for modeling and arts and crafts projects. Three recipes below will help you make one clay that hardens when you bake it, one clay that you can coat for a glossy finish, and one that molds and stays pliable like store-bought modeling clay.

Homemade Modeling Clay Recipe 1

This recipe produces a modeling clay similar to the other two recipes, but it uses cornstarch and baking soda rather than flour and salt:

  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 2 cups baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups cold water
  • Food coloring (if you want)


  • Mix the ingredients together over low heat till a dough is formed.
  • Cover the clay with a damp cloth and allow it to cool before using.
  • Seal completed clay products with shellac.

Homemade Modeling Clay Recipe 2

This basic clay is essentially bare-bones cooking dough that is easy to make with ingredients in your kitchen. It is sufficient for basic modeling projects, but you may want to throw it out before it starts growing bacteria. All ingredients you need to make it is:


  • Mix the clay ingredients together.
  • Store the modeling clay in the refrigerator in a bowl covered with plastic wrap or in a sealed plastic baggie.

Homemade Modeling Clay Recipe 3

This homemade clay uses cream and oil of tartar for thickening, producing a clay that is firmer than the one above. It is perfect for simple modeling projects and only requires a few ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup salt
  • 4 tablespoons cream of tartar
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 cups water
  • Food coloring (optional)


  • Stir together the dry ingredients. Mix in the oil, the water, and food coloring.
  • Cook over low heat, stirring constantly so that the clay thickens and pulls away from the sides of the pot.
  • Cool the clay before use. Store it in a sealed container or plastic bag.