Should you eat raw flour? Expert weighs in on TikTok's viral Grinch dip recipe

The recipe involves consuming raw cake mix as a festive treat, but should you really be eating it?

I tried making the viral Grinch dip, but only after seeing if it's actually safe to eat. Photos via Samantha Vecchiarelli, Tiktok/@recipes.
I tried making the viral Grinch dip, but only after seeing if it's actually safe to eat. Photos via Samantha Vecchiarelli, Tiktok/@recipes.

With the holiday season in full swing, festive dishes are the perfect crowd-pleaser to wow your guests. TikTok is filled with recipes to choose from, like one that's inspired by classic film "The Grinch."

While this viral DIY dip is a sweet way to celebrate the holidays, is it actually safe to eat? The ingredient list calls for some questionable additions, including raw flour, so we talked to an expert baker to get her take on whether or not this dip is safe to consume.

How to make Grinch Dip

TikTok user @recipes published a full video on how to make Grinch Dip just a few weeks ago, and it’s already racked up nearly two million views.

The steps are fairly simple, and involve combining one container of whipped topping, one box of vanilla cake mix, and two cups of vanilla Greek yogurt in a bowl.

Once combined, just add some green food colouring drops in to Grinch-ify the dip. Four to five drops of food colouring should do to give you the perfect shade of Grinch green, although this is up to personal preference. You can also top the dip with decorative red hearts for decoration.

As outlined in the video, it’s recommended to serve this dish with cookies and/or pretzels for a salty/sweet combo.

What people are saying

Commenters from the video have been loving this holiday-inspired treat, with one user claiming they "can’t wait to try this."

"Looks delicious!” added another.

“I made it [and it’s] so good — I’m obsessed,” shared a third.

However, other users were concerned about the step involving the cake mix, with one user warning you should “not eat raw cake mix…flour must be cooked.”

Another user echoed this statement suggesting, “the cake mix must be baked first, then you could crumble it into the whip cream.”

Is Grinch Dip safe to eat? An expert weighs in

Suzanne Halberstadt, owner of The Cupcake Shoppe in Toronto, gave us the inside scoop on this viral food trend. Put bluntly, Halberstadt claims that the viral Grinch Dip as prepared in the TikTok video above is “not safe to eat.”

“Boxed cake mix is not recommended to eat raw,” says Halberstadt. “It actually says that on the box. With the dry mixture, you are running the risk of getting sick by eating raw flour.”

Instead, Halberstadt says she "would suggest just [using] frosting” instead.

Directly above photograph of a woman preparing fruit pie dough for a german lattice fruit pie
Directly above photograph of a woman preparing fruit pie dough for a german lattice fruit pie

What are the dangers of eating raw flour?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, consuming raw flour can cause food-borne illnesses, such as as Escherichia coli (E. coli) and salmonella, due to bacteria not being killed during the cooking process.

Symptoms of E. coli can include:

  • Diarrhea

  • Stomach cramps

  • Fever

Symptoms of salmonella can include:

  • Fever

  • Headache

  • Diarrhea

  • Stomach cramps

  • Nausea

  • Vomiting

Trying the trend: I made Grinch Dip

I love trying new holiday recipes, but I’m not the best baker, so I was excited to give this quick and easy holiday treat a try. However, I took Halberstadt's recommendation into consideration by eliminating the raw cake mix and, instead incorporating vanilla frosting.

In one bowl I combined all of the ingredients: a container of whipped topping (in this case I used Cool Whip), two cups of vanilla Greek yogurt, and about 3/4 tub of vanilla frosting.

Grinch Dip Ingredients (Samantha Vecchairelli)
Grinch Dip Ingredients (Samantha Vecchairelli)

After incorporating all of the ingredients, I added some green food colouring and decorative sprinkles overtop.

Finally, I decorated my presentation plate with the dip, adding some cookies along the edges to enjoy with the dish. Because of how much this recipe makes, this dip is great for sharing and is an ideal treat for hosting during the holidays.

Grinch Dip (Samantha Vecchairelli)
Grinch Dip (Samantha Vecchairelli)

Final verdict

All in all, this was a fun recipe to try just in time for the holidays. However, it’s important to take proper precautions when recreating viral recipes at home to ensure your final product is safe to eat and share.

Although the TikTok-viral Grinch Dip looked delicious at first glance, it’s important to note that some ingredients should be modified to make the overall product safer to consume. In this case, that involves swapping the cake mix for vanilla frosting, since individuals run the risk of getting sick by consuming raw flour.

I can confirm that the addition of vanilla frosting gave the dip a really nice texture, which came out super creamy and fluffy. It also had a really nice vanilla flavour overall, especially after being paired with the snacks alongside it. Although I could not compare my modified version of the Grinch dip to the original in terms of taste, it's still a great — and ultimately safer — way to get into the festive spirit while trying the trend at home.

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