Making Play Food

With birthdays over for this year in our family and Christmas a long way off, we decided to add to our play food collection by making it ourselves!!  Actually, the results were so good, I’m really glad we did.  I think these home-made play cakes will be used over and over in lots of different play scenarios.  These cakes have formed part of our cafe play today and we’ve all loved it.

To make your own set of play cakes, you will need:

  • 3 sponges
  • paint and brushes
  • stones
  • bowls
  • transparent jars

Making Play Food

Before J and I got creative, I cut the sponges into cake shapes.  I cut some muffin shapes, two sets of four quarters to make two whole cakes and triangular wedges to form slices of cake.  I then put some chocolate coloured paint, strawberry jam paint, Victoria sponge paint and white icing/cream in the paint pots.

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J and I decided what we were in charge of painting and sat together, painting and chatting…

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… occasionally giving each other a helping hand!

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J used a sponge dabber to dab the circular cherry/strawberry decorations on the Victoria sponge cake.

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J decorated his chocolate cakes and got more precise as the creative morning session went on…

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I forgot to photograph the stones being painted… oooops…. carried away in the creative moment! All we did was share some stones into three, plastic bowls.  In one we added green paint, another red paint and final one yellow paint.  We used a paintbrush to swirl the stones around the paint and make sure they were covered.  When dry, we put them in the three transparent containers to use as sweetie treats.  I had to leave the wet cake sponges to dry for 24 hours and this morning they were perfectly dry and looked fab! I think so anyway!

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You can see the full post about the Cafe Play here and the learning opportunities it involves.  Hope you enjoy making your own play food!  These sponges could have been sandwiches, chips, sausages, burgers, pizza, potatoes – any food really! Just paint them accordingly!

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What did J learn?

  • creativity
  • fine motor development to paint accurately
  • recreating real items in paint and different materials
  • speaking and listening


  1. LoVe the sponge cake slices and have copied your idea to successfully make Victoria sponge and chocolate cake slices for my reception class’ roleplay seaside cafe

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