How long are freshly baked cookies good?
Some batches of cookies disappear so fast you don’t have to worry about how long they can be stored. Other times you end up with extras, which is a delicious conundrum to be in. How long can these fresh cookies last? And what is the best way to store them? Some cookie experts weighed in. Keep reading to see what they had to say.
Tracy Mattson is a professionally trained pastry chef and owner of COOKIE…take a bite!
Enjoy within Two to Three Days
Cookie freshness is an ever-changing equation. How long a cookie will stay fresh (not hard or stale) can depend on humidity, temperature, and how it is stored. It is recommended to eat the cookies two to three days at most after purchase.
If you aren’t going to eat them right away, it is recommended to put the cookies in an airtight container. If the cookies need to last more than a few days they should be placed in the freezer. Ideally, storing the cookies by flavor so there isn’t a moisture or flavor exchange is ideal.
The enemy of cookie freshness is air, so wrap them up tight or put them in the freezer. I enjoy a cold cookie from the freezer but my mom swears by popping them in the microwave for a few seconds after taking them out of the freezer.
A cookie is not really going to go bad to the point of making you sick, but a fresh cookie is so amazing you don’t want to ruin your experience!
Seven Ways To Keep Cookies Fresh
Cookies always taste better from scratch, but the reality is homemade cookies do not last as long as store-bought. This is due to the lack of preservatives and the quality of ingredients, which is a good thing!
Most cookie recipes last up to five days at room temperature if stored correctly, but a few need to be eaten right away for the best results. If you need your cookies to last longer, you can also refrigerate or freeze most doughs and bake them when you need them. Frozen cookies or dough can last up to three months!
Here are seven tips to get the longest “shelf-life” out of your homemade cookies:
1. Cool cookies completely before storing them. Cookies will sweat and lose their texture if they are not cooled properly.
2. Keep different cookies in different containers.
3. Store cookies without frosting. Frosted cookies last only 1-2 days!
4. Don’t overbake. If you are starting with a dried-out cookie they will be as hard as rocks in a few days.
5. Moist cookies last longer than dry, crisp cookies. Ingredients like brown sugar, butter, and egg yolks help cookies last longer after baking.
6. Store in an air-tight container in a cool place (storing on the counter next to the oven or dishwasher is not a good idea)
7. If you are baking with pumpkin or other fresh fruits or vegetables, it is best not to store your finished product at room temperature. These ingredients cause the cookies to sweat and they become sticky on top. They will still taste good, but the texture may be off-putting.
Using these tips and tricks will help your homemade cookies last longer.
Store in an Airtight Container
Who doesn’t love fresh baked cookies out of the oven? They are soft, chewy, gooey, and delicious. They are best the day they are baked even after they are fully cool. Can you eat them the next day? Yes. You can eat them for five days from bake day. After this, they tend to dry out and may start to grow mold. The more moisture in a cookie the more it will likely develop mold. The good news is that most cookies are fairly dry by nature.
To keep your cookies the best they can be, it is recommended to store them in an airtight container. This will help with moisture loss. But it’s not perfect. Here’s what I believe is the best solution to long-term storage.
Place cooled cookies in a Ziploc freezer bag or any airtight container and place them in the freezer. You can probably get about three months of freezing time this way. Thaw them at room temperature, or you can even place them in the microwave and heat for 30 seconds or until thoroughly warmed. It’s that simple.
Store Cookies Properly
Though freshly baked cookies can last for several days, they generally taste the very best within 48 hours of baking. Classic recipes such as chocolate chip, peanut butter, sugar, and chocolate cookies are ideally stored in an air-tight container at room temperature.
Be sure the cookies are completely cool before storing them. Delicate cookies can be stored in between layers of wax paper to help preserve their appearance.
How to keep cookies chewy? A popular trick used for years by home bakers is to add a small piece of bread to a container of cookies. This added moisture keeps the chewy cookies from drying out.
What about cookie jars? Though cookie jars may be cute, they aren’t always air-tight. This leads to dry or stale cookies. Instead, opt for a modern storage container that has a lid with a sturdy seal.
Cookies with frostings and fillings may not last as long depending on the recipe. Some frostings and fillings will require that your cookies be stored in the refrigerator, so it’s always best to confirm your recipe if you aren’t sure.
If you wish to keep your cookies at optimal flavor and texture, consider freezing them. Most cookies freeze extremely well for one or two months. Package completely cooled cookies in freezer-safe packaging (such as zip-top bags or air-tight freezer containers) and store. An additional step to prevent freezer burn is to wrap individual cookies in plastic wrap before adding them to a freezer bag or container.
This is a crowdsourced article. Contributors' statements do not necessarily reflect the opinion of this website, other people, businesses, or other contributors.