By Jordan Houston
Calling all cookie connoisseurs—the ones scolded by grandma one too many times for sneaking spoonfuls of raw batter behind her back. Edible cookie dough is taking the Valley by storm, with eclectic food trucks and sugary boutiques hopping onto the national trend at every turn.
But one local dough parlor in particular is setting the tone.
Scoopwell’s Dough Bar, tucked inside Phoenix’s Uptown Plaza at 100 E. Camelback Road, has mastered the sweet spot between nostalgia and safety with a recipe guaranteed to make your dough dreams come true.
With eye-catching flavors like lemon poppyseed and oatmeal M&M, the shop offers a unique blend of ingredients that many of its competitors do not—a dough to be enjoyed either raw or baked.
“The heart and soul of what we do is edible cookie dough—because who doesn’t love cookie dough?” says Kendra Scheer, who co-owns the operation with her husband, John. They live in the Scottsdale Airpark.
“We’ve just taken it and made it safe to eat, but you can still bake it.”
The husband-and-wife team works tirelessly to create tasty recipes using heat-treated flour and pasteurized eggs to combat E. coli and salmonella.
But because most edible dough brands forgo eggs entirely, Scoopwell’s strategic use of the ingredient gives it a competitive edge, Kendra says
“We use pasteurized egg whites, which is like when you get a cocktail at a bar with the frothy white stuff,” she explains. “It’s made from egg whites.
“We thought having eggs in the batter tastes good,” the mother of two sets of twins adds. “Otherwise, you lose the key characteristics that make it cookie dough. To me, it’s not cookie dough unless you can make it into cookies.”
The couple’s secret recipe allows customers to indulge in the dough straight from the mixing bowl, or bake it at 350 degrees, between 7 and 9 minutes, for warm, gooey results.
Scoopwell’s wide range of from-scratch flavors includes brownie batter; rainbow sprinkle; Oh, Gingersnap!; peanut butter explosion and Gimme S’mores.
Although chocolate chip is a fan favorite, John says, his personal preference is the mixture sans the chips.
“My favorite is just the dough without the chocolate chips; that’s what I would always have my mom make,” he shares. “A lot of little kids love it, too, because they don’t want all of the distraction. They just want the pure dough.”
The scrumptious treat can be ordered in four, seven or 10 mix-and-match scoop sizes.
Much like an ice cream parlor, Scoopwell’s offers mix-ins at 50 cents per extra topping, with additives like chocolate fudge, peanut butter chips, pretzels, Twix bars and marshmallows.
For those who prefer a little more “chill” with their dough, ice cream sandies, as well as the “Night Shift”—a mouth-watering marriage between half-baked dough, vanilla ice cream, homemade whipped cream and a topping of choice—are also available.
Inside the shop, shades of off-white, bubblegum pink and turquoise blue light up the interior in a modern, yet fresh and hip, atmosphere.
Hand-painted illustrations of nuts and bolts, done by local artist Timothy Brennan, color the walls while understated grey-and-white-marble tile covers the floor.
“We didn’t want people to come and be like, ‘Oh, it’s a cute little mom-and-pop shop,’” Kendra says. “We wanted it to still have that whimsical, nostalgic feel but also look like a polished business we could grow and expand.”
John and Kendra have been crafting their cookie dough skills for as long as they can remember. The Nebraska natives attended the University of Arizona together, where they quickly built a reputation for themselves as the couple to befriend.
“We have always just literally loved cookies,” John recalls. “In college, my roommates would ask us to make them cookies. We would always have endless amounts of cookies in our room and everyone wanted to hang out.
“They would even say, ‘Hey, you want to bring the cookie dough to the party?’ So it was kind of our thing,” he adds with a chuckle.
After getting married and spending several years in New York City, John as an investment banker and Kendra as a pediatric surgery nurse, the pair realized they were ready for change.
Two sets of twins later, Scoopwell’s was born.
“He (John) was doing finance and was a little bit burned out,” Kendra says. “A similar concept opened in New York and one day John was just like, ‘I think we could do our own version of that, but better.’”
They agreed to move back West and soon launched Scoopwell’s in 2018 as an edible cookie dough pop-up at Tempe Public Market.
Kendra, who is pregnant with their fifth child, describes the process of opening their bar as a never-ending learning curve—neither she nor her husband had any prior experience as business owners.
But she and John share the same level of gratitude for their leap of faith.
“Starting a business is scary,” Kendra says. “There’s so much we didn’t realize we didn’t know—even though we knew we didn’t know a lot. But if you think about it too much, you probably won’t do it—and we’re so glad we did.”
The working mom adds that she is most proud of how her little ones have received the move, though.
“They think we’re like rock stars; they love telling people about it, which can sometimes be embarrassing,” she laughs. “It’s also very, very sweet.”
John tells Airpark News the family business has helped him find a new level of fulfillment in ways his former jobs lacked.
The banker turned business owner says he appreciates the daily interactions with customers.
“It’s like you’re trying to get smiles on people’s faces and you have fun bringing people and the community together,” he expresses. “That was our goal.”
After a year of firsts, the dough parlor is now looking to travel.
Scoopwell’s is offering catering services throughout Greater Phoenix, Kendra shares, including Peoria, Scottsdale, Gilbert and Tempe.
“We do a lot of weddings, corporate events, birthday parties and kids parties,” she explains. “That’s kind of our big, next step that we’ve leaned into.”
Scoopwell’s is open from noon to 10 p.m. Sunday to Thursday, and noon to 11 p.m. Friday to Saturday.