Can You Freeze Cookies? Here's How to Make the Holiday Treats Last

'Tis the season for irresistible dessert spreads and cookie swaps.

<p>Ingwervanille/Getty Images</p>

Ingwervanille/Getty Images

The holiday season is extra-sweet for many reasons; it’s a time to slow down, make memories with family and friends, and indulge in delicious fare. But after attending countless holiday parties and gatherings, you may be feeling overwhelmed by the abundance of cookies and other confections. The good news is, you can preserve most of your delicious holiday treats for a later date. In fact, if you’re making your own cookies to gift this season, you can make the dough ahead of time and freeze it, so you’re not crunched for time amidst the holiday busyness. But before you start throwing all your sweet treats in the freezer, there are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind.

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Can You Freeze Cookies?

By the time the holidays roll around, there is no shortage of decadent cookies, cakes, and pies. Year after year, many of us overindulge until our pant buttons are about to pop, but there’s actually a way to enjoy those beloved Christmas cookies all year round. If you have leftover cookies, make sure they’re completely cooled, and then place them in an air-tight food storage container, lined with aluminum foil or wax paper. To keep them fresher for longer, you can also individually wrap each cookie in plastic wrap first.

Unfortunately frosted or glazed cookies won’t freeze well because they’ll absorb moisture. However, you can still make your sugar cookies ahead of time, freeze them, and then thaw them and frost them before serving.

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Can You Freeze Cookie Dough?

Have extra cookie dough? No problem! You can freeze almost any kind of cookie dough for up to three months. Simply form a log out of your cookie dough and tightly double-wrap it in plastic wrap, and then place it in a freezer bag. You can also spoon the dough on a cookie sheet and conveniently freeze pre-portioned cookies. Once the cookie dough balls are frozen, toss them in a freezer bag and store them until you’re ready to bake.

How to Thaw Cookies

When you’re ready to enjoy the cookies, remove them from the freezer a few hours in advance. You can just leave them to thaw at room temperature in the plastic container they were stored in. If you want to add frosting or a chocolate drizzle, wait until they’re completely defrosted and then you can have fun decorating.

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How to Thaw Cookie Dough

The great thing about frozen cookie dough is that you can pretty much bake frozen cookies right out of the freezer. If you have a log of dough, wait until you can easily slice through it with a knife, and then bake according to the recipe directions. Keep in mind, frozen cookie dough may need an extra minute or two to bake, so just watch the oven to make sure your treats don’t burn. If you already pre-portioned the cookie dough, simply place the cookies on a greased baking sheet and pop them in the oven.

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