Eating the dough is the best part of cookie baking.

“Isn’t that why we make cookies?” asked Maddie Wesemann, while sitting with friends inside Salt Lake City’s new Dough Co.

The Sugar House dessert shop sells scoops of safe-to-eat cookie dough in nine flavors as well as other cookie dough confections.

Sarah McNamara, co-owner with husband Michael, said it was her raw cookie dough addiction that helped launch the business in late June.

“I’m a lazy cookie maker,” said the 32-year-old former schoolteacher. “The dough never actually makes it to the oven. And I know other people are the same way.”

As children, most of us were told, “Don’t eat the cookie dough,” as the raw eggs and the unheated flour were possible sources of salmonella and E. coli, respectively.

The warnings never stopped anyone from licking the beaters and the bowl, which is why “dessert without rules” is the store’s motto.

McNamara said those health concerns are not a worry at Dough Co. “We don’t use eggs in our products and we use a heat-treated flour,” she said, “so our cookie dough is safe.”

The dough also stays good in the refrigerator for about a month.

Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune Sarah McNamara, owner of Dough Co., stirs up a batch of S'more cookie dough.
Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune Sarah McNamara, owner of Dough Co., stirs up a batch of S'more cookie dough.

National trend

Dough Co., is the first shop in Salt Lake County devoted to edible cookie dough, but it’s part of growing dessert trend taking place across the country.

The Cookie Dough Cafe, in Illinois, was one of the first to sell cookie dough online and in grocery stores. Cookie dough shops now can be found in metropolitan areas, from New York City’s Do to Los Angeles’ Unbaked: A Cookie Dough Bar.

Edible cookie dough is so popular that in June, The New York Times dubbed it “the country’s latest dessert trend.” And Eater called 2017 “the breakout year” for edible cookie dough,

At Dough Co., customers can mix and match flavors — two scoops for $4.50; three scoops, $6.50. There are classic flavors, such as chocolate chip, peanut butter and cake batter, as well as “rule breakers” like maple bacon snickerdoodle, red velvet and salted caramel pretzel. Two gluten-free options — chocolate chip and oatmeal — also are available.

Customers also can choose cookie dough bites and shakes, cookie dough topped with ice cream, cookie dough sandwiches, cannoli filled with cookie dough, and the giant Cinna-bomb, layers of cookie dough and icing on top of a cinnamon roll. Coffee, hot chocolate and milk are available.

The shop also has cookie dough that contains pasteurized eggs “so you can take it home and bake it like a normal cookie,” said McNamara.

Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune Dough Co., a new dessert shop in Sugar House that sells scoops of
Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune Dough Co., a new dessert shop in Sugar House that sells scoops of "raw" cookie dough. Their motto is "dessert without rules." Monday, July 31, 2017.

Sweet tooth required

The variety of edible dough flavors is part of the shop’s attraction, said Wesemann. “They have flavors I wouldn’t make on my own.”

Her friend Spencer Mortimer said the super sweet vibe “fits into the Utah culture,” where ice cream, doughnuts and sodas are favorite treats.

Mortimer, however, is not pointing any fingers. “I love cookie dough,” he admitted, “ so when I found out this place existed, I had to come.”

Kat Wickham has visited Dough Co. several times since it opened. “I think this is my fourth time and it’s only been open a month,” the University of Utah student said with a giggle. “It’s a nice break from ice cream.”

McKenna Yates, another U. student, was on her second visit.

“I’ve always been a cookie dough fanatic,” she said. “I’m going to eat one cookie dough scoop now and take the other one home for later or in the morning.”

kathys@sltrib.com

Cookie dough confections

Where • 2121 S. McClelland St. #105, Salt Lake City; 385-258-3111

Hours • Sunday -Thursday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 8 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Details • dessertwithoutrules.com/home