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How to Freeze Cookies and Cookie Dough

Freeze now for fun later

Attention, cookie bakers! Did you know your freezer is your best friend come cookie-baking season? Here's why freezing cookies and cookie dough ahead of the holidays is such a good idea:

  • You'll free up more of your time to enjoy the holidays.
  • You'll always have a stash of ready-to-bake cookies on hand in case guests show up unexpectedly.
  • You'll save cookies from going stale by freezing them if they don't all get eaten right away.

You can freeze most cookies whether they’re baked or unbaked; both are great ways to preserve freshness. Here’s how to do it right:

How to Freeze Baked Cookies

Baked cookies will keep in the freezer for up to 3 or 4 weeks.

Freezing Baked Cookies

Freezing Baked Cookies | Photo by Meredith

  • After baking, allow cookies to cool completely. Place them in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet to freeze them, then store them in a freezer-safe zip-top storage bag labeled with the name and date. Squeeze out extra air and place flat in the freezer. To save space, you can flat-stack freezer bags.
  • Most cookies can be frozen as-is, while decorated cookies may need to be individually wrapped or separated with waxed paper or parchment.
  • When you want to eat one, take it out and let it sit at room temperature or warm it in the oven for a few minutes. Or if you are in a hurry, you can microwave it in 10 second intervals. Don't heat or microwave decorated cookies, though.

How to Freeze Cookie Dough

Most cookie doughs freeze well for up to 3 months. Remember to write the date, type of cookie, and baking instructions on the outside of the package.

Drop Cookies: Shape the cookie dough into balls as you would when preparing to bake them. Place them on a silicone- or parchment-lined sheet. Freeze for an hour (or until solid) and transfer to a freezer zip-top bag. Squeeze out the air and freeze.

Freezing Cookie Dough Balls

Freezing Cookie Dough Balls | Photo by Meredith

Slice-and-Bake Cookies: Shape dough into one or two logs, double-wrap with plastic to prevent freezer burn and odor absorption from your freezer.

Freezing Cookie Dough Log

Freezing Cookie Dough Log | Photo by Meredith

Cut-Out Cookies: Shape dough into one or two flat disks. Double-wrap in plastic and freeze flat.

Forming Dough Into a Disk

Forming Dough Into a Disk | Photo by Meredith

How to Bake Frozen Cookie Dough

  • Drop Cookies: Set frozen cookie dough balls on a lined baking sheet and let the dough defrost in the refrigerator. This will take several hours, so plan ahead. Or place frozen cookie dough balls on a lined baking sheet and bake following recipe directions. Give the cookies a couple of extra minutes in the oven to make up for their frozen start.
  • Slice-and Bake Cookies: Frozen cookie logs are easier to slice after they’ve defrosted for a few minutes. Place on a lined baking sheet and bake following recipe directions. Give the cookies a couple of extra minutes in the oven if necessary.
  • Cut-Out Cookies: Defrost the dough in the fridge before rolling out, cutting shapes, and baking as usual.

Best Cookies and Doughs for Freezing

Shortbread Cookies
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Peanut Butter Cookies
Refrigerator Cookies
Sugar Cookies
Gingerbread Cookies
Brownies
Avoid freezing cake-like cookies and cookies that have a very liquidy batter, such as madeleines and tuiles.

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About Vanessa Greaves

Good food, friends, and fun are always on the menu. Find me as foodelicious on Allrecipes and vanny.gee on Instagram (but only if you don't mind cat pics and cocktails).