By Mary Beth Protomastro
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The Secret to Expertly Baked Cookies Every Time

This $8 gadget helps me roll out dough evenly, resulting in perfectly baked cookies.

Anyone who has ever followed a recipe for roll-out cookies has seen this step: "Roll out dough ¼ inch thick" (or another measurement). It sounds easy, doesn't it? Just take your rolling pin, flour the surface lightly, and roll out the dough to the thickness specified.

Yet whenever I made roll-out cookies, this simple instruction would take me hours, and I often wound up with cookies that were too thin, too thick, or uneven. As a result, my cookies never baked properly. The thin ones burned, the thick ones had the wrong texture, and the uneven ones were both over- and under-baked—not to mention unattractive.

Rolling out cookie dough is hard if you want to do it right. I actually gave it up for a while, until I found Regency Evendough Bands ($8;, plastic rings that I could attach to the ends of the barrel of the rolling pin. Each color-coded pair is a different size: 1/16-, 1/8-, 1/4-, or 3/8-inch. Just attach them and start rolling. It may take a little effort to get the bands on the barrel, but once they're on, they stay put and keep the barrel at a level height above your dough. Right before your eyes, your dough will roll out evenly and at exactly the right thickness. Best of all, your cookies will bake properly and look appealing.

You can also use the rolling pin rings for pie crusts and pastries—pretty much anything that requires even rolling.

This Story Originally Appeared On Real Simple