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Eating Raw Cookie Dough: Is It Safe if It's Store-Bought?

newsletter-graphicby D. Milton Stokes

Q. Regarding salmonella poisoning, is it safe to eat raw cookie dough if it's store-bought?

A. Good news on this one: the premixed cookie dough in grocery stores should contain eggs that have been pasteurized, meaning they've been put through a process that kills harmful microorganisms, so it should be safe.

And here's a yummy tip: to avoid getting salmonellosis (the disease caused by salmonella bacteria) from homemade cookie dough, use pasteurized egg product (liquid eggs in a carton).


D. MILTON STOKES, M.P.H., R.D., C.D.N.,
is a registered dietitian with One Source Nutrition in Norwalk, Conn., and a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.


Editor's note:
We aren't in the cookie-dough-making business (bummer) and do not guarantee that the dough you buy is safe to eat. Salmonella is only one potential illness-causing culprit. Here's what Pillsbury says on its website, accessed November 23, 2010:

Are the eggs used in your refrigerated cookie dough pasteurized?
Yes, the eggs in our refrigerated cookie dough are dried and pasteurized. Can I eat the raw dough? Our cookies are designed to be baked first, then eaten. We do not recommend eating any raw cookie dough.


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Last updated and/or approved: November 2010.
Original article appeared in winter 2005 former print magazine. This general health-care information is not meant as individual advice. Please see our disclaimer.
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