How to Freeze Cookies and Cookie Dough

Enjoy a cookie whenever you please thanks to our Test Kitchen's best methods for freezing cookies—as well as some of our favorite freezer-friendly recipes.

There are few things more satisfying than a chocolate chip cookie fresh out of the oven. But sometimes there's just no time to break out the flour and sugar to bake a batch. Frozen cookies can save the day. Baked or unbaked, freezing cookies is an easy way to get your comfort food fix. Keeping frozen cookie dough on hand also means being able to produce treats for the family and friends at a moment's notice. Read on for our Test Kitchen-approved tips on the best ways to freeze both baked cookies and dough.

freezer bag of cookies
Jason Donnelly

How to Freeze Baked Cookies

Homemade cookies will keep at room temperature up to three days. If you don't think you'll be able to make those sweets disappear in three days or less, it's easy to freeze them. Most of your favorite cookies and bar cookies will freeze well, just hold off on the the frosting and decorating until you're ready to serve them.

  • Allow cookies to cool completely on a wire rack before placing in freezer-safe bags. Alternatively, our Test Kitchen also recommends storing in an airtight container that has more rigid sides to prevent breaking. (This is especially useful for shaped cookies or if you keep a packed freezer.) Be sure to label them and freeze for up to three months.

When you're ready to eat, remove them from their bag or container to prevent moisture buildup as they thaw (no one wants a soggy cookie). They can thaw at room temperature or in the fridge. Decorate or frost, if needed, and enjoy.

round cookies in freezer bag
Jason Donnelly

How to Freeze Cookie Dough

By freezing cookie dough, you can easily have a soft, fresh cookie whenever the sweet tooth strikes. After making your dough, here are some ways to freeze it:

  • You can simply place all the cookie dough in an airtight container and freeze up to three months. Thaw it in the fridge, then shape and bake the dough as directed.
  • For individual portions, shape dough balls with your cookie scoop and place them on a baking sheet. Place the sheet in the freezer to allow the dough to harden completely (flash freezing) before transferring the dough balls to a freezer bag. Store them up to three months. You can bake the balls without thawing, but you might need to add two to three minutes to the baking time suggested in the recipe.

Test Kitchen Tip: For cookies dipped in sugar or powdered sugar, such as chocolate crinkles or sandies, wait until the dough is thawed, then roll them in sugar just before baking.

frozen cookies wrapped in plastic and foil
Jason Donnelly

Freezing Slice-and-Bake Cookie Dough

The beauty of icebox cookies and slice-and-bake cookies is that you can save freezer room tucking entire logs into the freeze. For a perfect result, wrap the dough logs tightly in plastic wrap and then foil. This will keep the air out and avoid freezer burn. Freeze up to three months, then thaw completely in the fridge before slicing and baking as your recipe directs.

How Long to Store Cookies in the Freezer

With proper storage, most cookies can be kept in the freezer up to three months. As long as you follow the above Test Kitchen tips on freezing your dough, you should be all set to enjoy those delicious cookies whenever a craving strikes.

It's time to start planning your Christmas cookie lineup. Make some sugar cookies, chocolate chip cookies, and gingerbread cookies to get a head start on the holiday baking season. If you're in a pinch for time, we've also got some quick and easy and no-bake cookies to get you started.

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