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Salt Dough Calculator

Created by Hanna Pamuła, PhD
Reviewed by Bogna Szyk and Adena Benn
Last updated: May 22, 2024

If you are looking for the best salt dough recipe, this salt dough calculator is for you. Whether you seek the perfect proportion for air-dried models, DIY jewelry, or salt dough ornaments for Christmas, you can take a deep breath and relax - you finally found it. Give the calculator a try, or keep scrolling to find an explanation about how to make the salt dough.

Salt dough recipe

Salt dough is a modeling material made from a mixture of flour, salt, and water. It's known from ancient times when dough figures were made for offerings to the gods. When the tradition of decorating Christmas trees appeared, salt dough ornaments become popular again.

There are two classic recipes, which differ a bit. First one, more common, takes one weight unit of flour, one weight unit of salt and around half unit of water, for example:

Classic recipe (I)

  • 200 g of flour
  • 200 g of salt
  • 125 g of water (which is 125 ml)

or, if you prefer the volume units, the proportion is:

  • 2 cups of flour

  • 1 cup of salt

  • ~3/4 cup of water

There is also a similar recipe taking the same flour-salt proportion (1:1), but not in weight but volume units - for example, cups or glasses:

Classic recipe (II)

  • 1 cup of flour
  • 1 cup of salt
  • ~3/8 cup of water

or, the proportion in weight units:

  • 200 g flour
  • 400 g salt
  • 125 ml water

In our salt dough calculator, three other less-known salt dough recipes are also implemented - recipe variations using not only three basic ingredients but also wallpaper paste or potato starch.

Before you jump into creating the salt dough you will need for your Christmas tree decorations, be sure to visit our christmas tree calculator to figure out how many ornaments you will need. In this way, you will avoid doing too many or too few.

How to make the salt dough?

Making salt dough is not just for children - it's an easy and fun way of spending time for everybody, which helps to bring creativity back to your life. Salt dough preparation is really easy, so the youngest and the elders shouldn't have any problems with it. So how to make the salt dough?

  1. Mix the flour and salt in a bowl.
  2. Gradually add water to your mixture.
  3. If you want to have more elastic dough, add some fluid wallpaper paste.
  4. Knead until the dough is smooth and pliable. It may take around 10 minutes.

Remember to store your salt dough in a plastic bag or airtight container when not in use, as it dries quite fast.

Then, you're ready for the best part - creation! Unleash your imagination and make incredible ornaments, bizarre sculptures or extravagant jewelry. The models can't be too thick or massive, as they can crumble or crack.

Afterward, there is the drying part. You can choose between air drying (it can take a couple of days or even weeks for bigger models!) or baking. It's usually recommended to bake the salt dough at low temperatures (120-250°F/50-120°C) for 2-3 hours and then alternatively brown at 400°F/200°C for a short time. However, the time and temperature depend on the dough type, your model size, oven type, and even the baking tray color.

How to use the salt dough calculator?

  1. Choose the recipe type. Select the recipe you like, e.g., let's start with the classic dough.
  2. The salt dough calculator provides short information about each recipe application. If it's the one you need, stay with it, if not, read about other options. Let's assume we are happy with the choice as we are making the salt dough for the first time.
  3. Enter the amount of one ingredient. For example, 3 cups of flour. That amount seems reasonable for salt dough ornaments for our Christmas tree. If you need, you can change the units between grams and cups for the loose ingredients, as we implemented the products' densities in the tool. Our grams to cups calculator may be helpful as well.
  4. The salt dough calculator found the amount of other ingredients, as well as brief instructions. We need to add 1.5 cups of salt and 9 fl oz of water. Awesome!

The recipes implemented in the calculator come from an excellent book of Isolde Kiskalt "Dough Crafts".

Are you planning to pull out all the stops this Christmas? Be sure to check out our snowman calculator to figure out how to build the perfect snowman.

Hanna Pamuła, PhD
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