Can you eat Pillsbury edible cookie dough while pregnant?

Quick Answer

It is generally considered safe to eat Pillsbury edible cookie dough in moderation during pregnancy. The edible cookie dough is meant to be consumed raw and contains heat-treated flour and pasteurized eggs to reduce the risk of foodborne illness. However, pregnant women should still exercise caution and check the product label as some varieties may contain raw ingredients. Limit portion sizes and avoid eating edible cookie dough every day.

What is Pillsbury edible cookie dough?

Pillsbury edible cookie dough refers to products like:

  • Pillsbury Ready to Bake Cookies
  • Pillsbury Slice and Bake Cookies
  • Pillsbury Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough
  • Pillsbury Funfetti Cookie Dough
  • Pillsbury Seasonal Cookie Dough

These ready-to-eat cookie doughs are meant to be consumed without baking. Pillsbury uses heat-treated flour and pasteurized eggs in their edible cookie dough to help reduce potential risks from raw flour or eggs. The dough is safe to eat straight from the package.

However, some varieties may still contain small amounts of raw flour or eggs. It’s important to check the label and ingredients list.

Is it safe to eat Pillsbury cookie dough while pregnant?

Eating Pillsbury edible cookie dough in moderation is generally considered safe during pregnancy. Here are some key points:

  • The edible cookie dough is designed to be safe for consumption without baking.
  • It’s made with heat-treated flour that is less likely to contain E. coli or Salmonella bacteria.
  • Pasteurized eggs are used to reduce the risk of Salmonella infection.
  • No raw egg warnings are displayed on Pillsbury edible cookie dough.

However, there are still some risks to keep in mind:

  • Some varieties may contain small amounts of raw flour or eggs.
  • It’s high in sugar, fat, and calories.
  • Overconsumption may lead to excessive weight gain.

The CDC and FDA say raw cookie dough should be avoided during pregnancy. But Pillsbury edible dough has steps to increase safety. Overall, it’s fine for pregnant women to eat in moderation. Check labels and avoid excessive intake.

Are there risks of eating raw cookie dough while pregnant?

Yes, there are some potential risks to be aware of with raw cookie dough:

Salmonella from Raw Eggs

Raw eggs may contain Salmonella bacteria. Salmonella can cause food poisoning and pregnancy complications like:

  • Fever and diarrhea
  • Dehydration
  • Preterm labor
  • Miscarriage

Raw flour may also be contaminated with Salmonella. Pillsbury uses pasteurized eggs and heat-treated flour to reduce this risk.

E. Coli from Raw Flour

Raw flour may be contaminated with E. coli. This can cause illness and pregnancy complications like:

  • Stomach cramps and bloody diarrhea
  • Kidney failure
  • Preterm labor

Again, the heat-treated flour Pillsbury uses reduces this chance.

Listeria Contamination

Listeria bacteria are also a concern with raw dough. Listeria infection (listeriosis) in pregnancy can result in:

  • Fever and muscle aches
  • Preterm delivery
  • Stillbirth
  • Newborn infection

Proper food handling and cooking typically kill Listeria.

Tips for safely eating Pillsbury cookie dough while pregnant

Here are some tips for safely consuming Pillsbury edible cookie dough if you’re pregnant:

  • Check the label – make sure no raw egg or raw flour warnings are present.
  • Review ingredient lists for raw eggs or flour.
  • Avoid homemade or store-bought refrigerated cookie dough.
  • Stick to 1-2 tablespoon serving sizes of edible dough.
  • Do not eat edible cookie dough every day.
  • Make sure edible dough feels cool or room temperature.
  • Avoid dough that feels warm or is left at room temperature too long.
  • Practice good food safety and hygiene habits.

Consuming small amounts of Pillsbury edible cookie dough occasionally during pregnancy is unlikely to pose major risks. But it’s still smart to take precautions.

Are there any health benefits to eating Pillsbury cookie dough while pregnant?

Pillsbury edible cookie dough has minimal nutritional value on its own but can provide some calories and energy. Potential health benefits may include:


Cookie dough can provide extra calories which may help meet increased calorie needs during pregnancy. A 1-2 tablespoon serving contains 70-140 calories.


The sugar and refined carbs in cookie dough provide a quick source of energy. Each serving has about 15-30g of carbohydrates.


Cookie dough typically contains 2-4g of protein per serving from eggs and flour. Protein supports fetal growth and development.


The fat in cookie dough (4-9g per serving) helps absorb fat-soluble vitamins like vitamin A.


Small amounts of iron are provided from enriched flour. Iron carries oxygen to the baby and prevents anemia.

However, most of these nutrients can be obtained from better sources. Check with your doctor about appropriate weight gain, nutrition needs, and cravings during pregnancy.

Are there certain flavors or varieties to avoid?

It’s best to avoid the following Pillsbury cookie dough flavors or varieties when pregnant:

  • Any dough with warnings about raw flour, eggs, or dough.
  • Refrigerated cookie dough (requires baking first).
  • Flavors containing raw ingredients like oatmeal or raisins.
  • Seasonal flavors around major holidays.
  • Limited edition cookie dough releases.

Stick to simple flavors like chocolate chip, sugar cookie, or Funfetti. Also look for heat-treated flour and pasteurized eggs called out on the packaging. Check labels closely and contact the manufacturer if unsure.

What are some safer alternatives for pregnancy cravings?

Here are some healthier alternatives to satisfy cookie dough cravings while pregnant:

Edible Cookie Dough

Look for edible cookie dough made without raw flour or eggs. Popular brands include:

  • Nestle Toll House Edible Cookie Dough
  • Annie’s Homegrown Edible Cookie Dough


Opt for fully baked cookies like Chips Ahoy or Oreos instead of raw dough.

Protein Balls

Make no-bake cookie dough protein balls using oat flour, nut butter, and chocolate chips.

Yogurt Parfaits

Layer yogurt with granola, chocolate chips, and fruit for a sweet treat.

Nice Cream

Blend frozen bananas into “nice cream” and mix in chocolate chips or cacao nibs.

Fruit and Nuts

Fresh berries, apples with almond butter, or trail mix can help satisfy sweet cravings.

Talk to your doctor about any significant pregnancy cravings and safe ways to manage them.

What are the best practices for handling and storing edible cookie dough?

Proper handling and storage of edible cookie dough is important for safety:


  • Refrigerate after opening and use within 3-4 days.
  • Check “best by” dates and don’t use past expiration.
  • Store in original packaging until ready to eat.
  • Keep refrigerated dough cold, below 40°F.


  • Wash hands before and after handling.
  • Use clean utensils, not fingers, to handle dough.
  • Portion out dough servings as needed instead of “double dipping.”
  • Do not leave dough containers sitting out or reuse if contaminated.


  • Thaw frozen dough slowly in the refrigerator overnight.
  • Do not thaw at room temperature or in warm water.
  • Use thawed dough within 24-48 hrs.

Following food safety guidelines helps prevent bacterial growth. Discard dough if it smells, tastes, or looks odd. Take extra care when pregnant.

Can you freeze and re-freeze edible cookie dough?

It’s best not to freeze and re-freeze edible cookie dough. Here are some tips:

Freezing unopened packages:

  • Unopened, store-bought edible dough can safely be frozen before the expiration date.
  • Freeze rapidly at 0°F or below.
  • Use within 2-3 months for best quality.

Freezing opened packages:

  • Use opened dough within 3-4 days.
  • Freezing may reduce quality and change texture.
  • If freezing, portion it out first in single-use bags.
  • Thaw refrigerated dough safely before using.

Avoid re-freezing thawed dough:

  • Do not refreeze thawed cookie dough.
  • Re-freezing breeds bacteria and compromises safety.
  • Refreezing also causes texture changes.
  • Discard any remaining thawed dough after use.

For optimal safety and quality, avoid refreezing edible cookie dough once it has thawed. But first-time freezing of unopened or opened packages is generally okay.


Pillsbury edible cookie dough is designed to be safe to eat raw during pregnancy. Consuming small amounts should not pose major risks as long as it contains heat-treated flour and pasteurized eggs. Check labels to ensure no raw flour or eggs are present. Limit intake to 1-2 tablespoon servings and avoid daily consumption. Take care with storage and handling to prevent contamination. Safer alternatives also exist like baked goods, edible dough with no raw ingredients, and natural snacks. In moderation, Pillsbury edible cookie dough can be part of an overall healthy prenatal diet. But consult your doctor about any cravings or nutrition concerns.

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