Baking Cookies on Your Car’s Dashboard Is Doable, and Here’s How
With record high temperatures across the country making their way here to Massachusetts this week, it might be time for you to find the answer to the age old question:
Can you really bake chocolate chip cookies on the dashboard of your car?
The simple answer is yes, you can – but how good they'll taste is still up for discussion.
With an outside temperature of 90 degrees, the inside of a vehicle can reach close to 140 degrees within an hour. The dashboard itself can reach well over 150 degrees, although it's not recommended that you bake your cookies directly on your dash. A thin cookie sheet will work fine, but you might want to put a dish towel under it so it doesn't burn your interior.
Premade cookie dough works best, especially those without eggs as an ingredient. Leaving your cookie dough out to room temperature before you place it in your car works best, and you can flatten the cookies slightly before you leave them to bake in the car. Park your car in direct sunlight midday and let the sun do all the work.
Most people who have tried the solar baking method said for best results, leave the cookie dough in the car for at least five hours, but if your cookies do have eggs in them, you are going to want to make sure the internal temperature of the cookies is safe before you eat them.
The Food and Drug Administration suggests all egg-containing foods reach an internal temperature of at least 165 degrees and that you let them stand for at least two minutes after they reach the required temperature.
While this week might be the right time to try out your own cookie recipe in your car for fun, hot days and cars can be a deadly combination without keeping safety in mind. According to KidsandCars.org, 38 children on average die each year from vehicular heatstroke.
Heatstroke is the leading cause of death in vehicles (excluding crashes) for those 14 and younger. There were 36 hot car deaths in 2022 and there have been nine so far in 2023.
You can learn more about car safety in the summer from Consumer Reports.