My, aren’t we in a conundrum! It’s a fight between our cookie-dough-loving devil and our cookie-dough-can-be-dangerous angel. In a previous post, I wrote with excitement about the opening of several raw dough stores coming to New Jersey, like Just Dough it and Dough Life. The success of these stores isn’t surprising, I can polish off a dozen ready to bake pillsbury chocolate chip cookies before I even THINK of putting them in an oven! The truth is, mostly everyone loves cookie dough. And although we all love it, we’ve all been cautioned not to eat it. According to the CDC, all cookie dough is not safe to eat and so should be avoided.

First of all, according to the CDC, raw flour can contain harmful bacteria, (E. coli being one of them) that are naturally cooked out when the dough is heated during the baking process. As for raw eggs, we all know that they can contain salmonella. Dough Life and other stores like it say that their dough is perfectly safe because it contains no eggs at all and because its flour is heat treated to prevent harmful bacteria.

Still, according to the CDC warning “you should never taste or eat raw dough or batter—whether made from recalled flour [referring to a recent flour recall] or any other flour.”

Although there have not been any reported problems with the cookie dough at either Dough Life or Just Dough It, a famous New York chain has had legal issues. Cookie dough chain, DO, which also claims it’s dough is perfectly safe to eat, has had a lawsuit filed against it by several consumers who say they were sickened by the dough shortly after eating it. DO says this is impossible since their eggs are pasteurized and they use a heat treated, ready to eat flour.

Dough Life, on the other hand, uses absolutely no eggs in its dough and the flour is also heat-treated to kill any microbes, owners say.

So, what’s the last word? I guess time (and personal choice) will dictate your decision. As for me, I’m going to go with non-egg version of cookie dough at Dough Life. They’ve got a good track record for safety. And judging by their popularity, especially at their new Freehold Mall location, it sounds like a lot of others have made the same decision.

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