The holidays are here, and it’s time to dust off those cookie cutters and cake pans to make some festive treats. But be careful: Tasting that cookie dough could land you in a hospital with a case of salmonella poisoning from the raw eggs. Just as worrisome is that it could also put you at risk for an E. coli infection from its uncooked flour.

Between December 2015 and September 2016, 63 people in 24 states developed an E. coli infection after eating raw flour. And the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) expects more illnesses to crop up due to flour's long shelf life.

The outbreak was caused by a potentially dangerous strain of E. coli called 0121. Like E. coli 0157, which has been responsible for food-poisoning outbreaks from undercooked ground beef, 0121 is toxin-producing bacteria that may cause abdominal cramps, bloody diarrhea, and even life-threatening kidney damage. No one who became ill from flour or flour-based products has died, but one victim suffered kidney damage and 17 other people have been hospitalized.

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Products from a General Mills plant in Kansas City, Mo., in November 2015 are thought to have caused these E. coli infections. The company voluntarily recalled millions of pounds of possibly contaminated flour, including their Gold Medal, Signature Kitchens, and Gold Medal Wondra flour brands. Several cake and pancake mixes that may have included General Mills flour were also recalled.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the CDC are still advising consumers not to eat flour and flour-containing foods that haven't been cooked or baked. Consuming raw flour is a potential hazard, says the FDA; it isn’t meant to be a ready-to-eat product.

Some of the ways you can ingest uncooked flour may not be so obvious. Below are five sources of potentially tainted flour that you should watch out for if you want to avoid an E. coli infection.

1. Raw dough and batters. Cookie dough, pizza dough, and cake and pancake batters are risky, so you should be careful not to eat them before they’re cooked.

But raw dough can make you sick even if you don’t eat it. For example, kneading bread dough often leaves you with floury hands, which could be a problem if the flour is tainted. Some restaurants give children balls of uncooked dough to play with, and they might put the dough in their mouth or lick their fingers. Even storing uncooked dough next to other food could posk a risk, so be sure to handle and wrap it carefully.

2. Arts and crafts materials. Making cookie-dough ornaments for your Christmas tree? Websites devoted to pantry-based projects offer recipes for modeling clay, playdough, spray glue, papier-mache, and ornaments with flour as the main ingredient. For now, we recommend that you avoid making these mixtures with kids. 

3. No-cook dishes. Some recipes for truffles, icing, and cookies call for flour but don’t involve heating or baking. If the recipe doesn't require the dish to be thoroughly cooked, skip it.

4. Contaminated cooking and eating surfaces. Flour is light and powdery, and can easily fly everywhere in your kitchen if you aren’t careful. Even minuscule amounts of tainted flour can make you sick, so be sure that foods that will be eaten raw don’t come into contact with flour-dusted counters, cutting boards, plates, and the like. Wash these—as well as your hands—in hot, soapy water after using them. Be careful if you’re dredging meat or chicken in flour before cooking; you don't want the flour to go all over the place.

5. Containers you use to store flour. When you purchase a new bag of flour, you might dump the new flour into a bin or canister that still has flour in it, which might be tainted. If you’re not sure whether the old flour has been recalled, throw it out. Make sure that you thoroughly clean the storage container before using it again.