How to Heat Treat Flour

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We’ve all been that kid (or adult) longing to lick the cookie dough off of the spatula. Delicious, but potentially unsafe. This post walks you through how to heat treat flour, ridding it of the harmful bacteria that can make raw batter and/or dough unsafe to consume.

Why Do You Need To Heat Treat Flour?

Raw flour can carry harmful bacteria such as e. colli and/or salmonella. Heat treating it (heating it to 160°F before using) kills off those bacteria, making the flour safe to consume. You don’t have to worry about heat-treating flour if you are making a recipe that requires time in the oven or on the stovetop (enough to heat the flour past 160°). But if you are preparing a no-bake or no-cook recipe that contains flour, you will want to take this extra step to ensure food safety.

How to Heat Treat Flour in the Oven

Here’s a quick look at how to heat treat flour in the oven. Don’t forget to scroll to the recipe card below for more detailed instructions.

  • Preheat. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Bake. Spread the flour over a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 5-7 minutes.
  • Temperature check. Make a pile of the flour in the middle of the pan and use a thermometer to check that the temperature of the pile is at 160°F or higher.
  • Cool. Allow the flour to cool completely before using.
  • Whisk. If your heat treated flour is a little clumpy, use a whisk to stir it, breaking up any clumps.
A spoon scooping heat treated flour out of a jar.

Can You Heat Treat Flour in the Microwave?

You can! So long as it gets to 160°F. Microwave the flour in 20-30-second intervals, checking the temperature after each. This method works best when you only need to heat treat smaller amounts of flour (enough to fit on something like a plate, say). For larger amounts, you’ll need the larger surface area of a cookie sheet.

How to Heat Treat Cake Mix

You can use the exact same process to heat treat cake/brownie mix. Again, make sure the mix gets up to 160°F.

Closeup of a spoon in a jar of heat treated flour.

Ways to Use Heat Treated Flour

Heat treated flour is needed for desserts that use uncooked flour, such as the following:

You can also heat treat cake mix when a recipe calls for you to use it in its raw form, such as my Cake Batter Fudge Brownie Ice Cream Cake and my No-Bake Funfetti Oreo Birthday Cake Cheesecake.

Proper Storage

Once the flour has cooled completely, seal it in an airtight container. You can store it at room temperature for up to 1 year, ideally in a cool, dark place.

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A spoon scooping heat treated flour out of a jar.

How to Heat Treat Flour

  • Author: Lindsay Conchar
  • Prep Time: 1 minute
  • Cook Time: 7 minutes
  • Total Time: 8 minutes
  • Yield: 6 cups
  • Category: Turotial
  • Method: Baking


This recipe walks you through how to bake (or microwave) any harmful bacteria out of flour so that it is safe to consume in its raw form. It takes less that 10 minutes and it’s worth the peace of mind. 


  • 2 cups (260g) all purpose flour


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C).
  2. Spread flour evenly onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  3. Cook for 5-7 minutes, or until it reaches 160°F. To test the temperature, carefully create a pile of the flour in the middle of the pan and use a thermometer to check the temperature.
  4. Let the flour cool completely before using.
  5. Stir with a whisk or sift to break up any clumps, if needed.
  6. Store in an airtight container until ready to use.


  • Serving Size: 1/4 cup
  • Calories: 114
  • Sugar: 0.1 g
  • Sodium: 0.6 mg
  • Fat: 0.3 g
  • Trans Fat:
  • Carbohydrates: 23.8 g
  • Protein: 3.2 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg


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About Lindsay

I'm a wife and a mom to twin boys and a baby girl! And I've got a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the treats!

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