Baking cookies is a fun little activity that I don’t think any of us ever outgrow. When you are a child, it is almost magical, resulting in delicious cookies that you can snack on. When you are an adult, the magic is not quite there anymore – but hey, you still end up with cookies! Who can say no to that? If you are trying your hand at baking cookies with a new cookie dough recipe (or without a recipe at all), you may have noticed that the cookie dough is too runny. This happens a lot and is a very common problem, so today let’s learn together the reasons for the question, “why is my cookie dough runny?” Let’s share some fixes for runny cookie dough and also tips for how to prevent it.
Table of Contents
- What Causes Runny Cookie Dough?
- How To Prevent Cookie Dough From Being Too Runny
- Is Runny Cookie Dough Ruined?
- FAQs On Why Is My Cookie Dough Runny
What Causes Runny Cookie Dough?
While it might sound like stating the obvious, runny cookie dough is a huge sign indicating that you have used either too much liquid or not enough dry ingredients. The texture and consistency of cookie dough are heavily reliant on the proportions and amounts of the ingredients used.
If you use a significantly smaller amount of dry ingredients, then you run the risk of the dough being far too runny. This also goes the complete other way as a lack of liquid will result in a crumbly and dry cookie dough that is far too dry to be properly rolled or baked.
The main way people end up adding too much liquid is because they mess up their initial ingredients. A lot of people will add far too many dry ingredients which results in very dry and crumbly cookie dough. To correct this, the logical step is to add more liquids to the dough. This completely works, however as the dough is less absorbent than it initially was – people commonly get impatient and add far too much liquid.
It is very important to have a recipe in mind when making cookie dough as freehanding can lead to unexpected results, and without knowing how to counter these, could also lead to a failed batch of cookies. The results are not always too dry or too runny, cookie dough can also be too crumbly or too sticky!
How To Prevent Cookie Dough From Being Too Runny
The easiest way to fix runny dough is to not have it runny in the first place.
As previously mentioned, the best way to ensure this is to have a clear and concise recipe that is proven and reliable. Take extra care when you are handling your ingredients and make sure you are precise with the amounts needed. The saying, “measure twice, cut once” is very important here. Although I think it is better suited to carpentry instead of baking.
Fixing Runny Cookie Dough
When it comes to actually fixing the problem instead of preventing it, you have two options.
The first option is very precise, and calculated, and needs you to know exactly how much of each ingredient you have used.
The second option is very much a “hope and pray” strategy.
As mentioned, this method requires you to have a good understanding of both your dry and wet ingredients and how much of each you used. You also need to know (roughly) how much extra liquid you added afterward. That thin cookie dough of yours can be fixed as long as you know the amounts of everything added.
Time to whip out your calculator and do some maths as you need to find the percentage increase of wet ingredients that you added. For example, let’s say you added 5 tablespoons of milk to your cookie dough, and this ended up being a 13% increase from the standard amount – you simply need to add 13% of every other ingredient to your dough. This will make the dough well-proportioned as all the ingredients will be in their desired ratio.
While it can be tricky to find the percentages and the exact amounts of each ingredient, this method can still be followed even if you only roughly guess what each number would be. It is all about keeping the ingredients in the ratio that the recipe shows. As long as this is achieved, even loosely, then your runny dough should start to be less of an issue almost immediately.
Another huge problem people have with this method is that you need to know how much extra liquid you added to your cookie dough. This can be problematic as a lot of people tend to just eyeball their measurements and pour as much liquid as they think is needed. Again, just having a rough idea is still good enough and you should at least attempt this method before having any other Hail Mary ideas.
Understanding the main principles of what cookie dough should be like is good for this as you can keep playing with it until it reaches your desired consistency.
This method is more used by people who either do not have loads of time or are not too fussed about the outcome being perfect. It is very much the straightforward approach to solving the problem of runny cookie dough.
If there are too many wet ingredients, simply add flour and keep adding flour until it reaches the consistency that you are comfortable with. The liquid ingredients bring extra moisture to the dough so adding more flour will dry it out a bit and hopefully revive the desired texture of your cookie dough.
Once it is at the correct consistency, you can start messing around with flavorings and adding chocolate chips, if you want to. All that matters is that your cookie dough is at the right consistency.
Is Runny Cookie Dough Ruined?
Thankfully, it is very easy to fix runny cookie dough as long as it is not too watery. Slight alterations can easily be made but if you have messed it up too badly then it may be beyond saving. The texture can almost always be revived. However, the flavor of the cookies can suffer tremendously if you use too much milk or too much flour while correcting the consistency.
FAQs On Why Is My Cookie Dough Runny
What to do if your cookie dough is too runny?
If you are struggling to find the right consistency for your cookie dough and can see that it is leaning more towards the runny side of things, you can try and correct this by increasing the amount of the dry ingredients that you used. It is really helpful if you know how much extra liquid you added to the dough as you can then find the percentage increase of the liquids and add that percentage of each dry ingredient to the dough. This will revive the consistency while still keeping all ingredients in the right ratio.
How to fix runny cookie dough?
Working with runny dough is tough. If your cookie dough is too runny you can try adding more dry ingredients to it to balance it out. It is best to use a combination of your dry ingredients so that the cookies will still taste good. However, if you only need to alter the consistency a small amount – no one would blame you for just adding flour until the texture is fixed.
Why is my cookie dough runny?
Cookie dough is very prone to becoming too runny if you add too much liquid. For the most part, a lot of people accidentally make their cookie dough too dry and crumbly and then try to reverse this by adding more liquids. This causes the cookie dough to be runny.