It’s that time of year when cookies are out in full force, flaunting their decorations and their holiday spirit. Or you know, you work a lot to manage to make multiple batches for all of the events you’re going to. But how do you store baked cookies? Are there rules? Yes, and we’re going to go through them right now!
If you’re new at baking cookies or are just trying to make larger quantities starting this year, then maybe you need to find out a few things about how to store baked cookies, once they’re ready. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to store different varieties of cookies in the same place or container, but if you did, you might have found out that is not a very good idea most of the time.
Why, you might ask? Because the texture of the cookies can change. Soft cookies will probably harden, while crunchy cookies will lose their crispiness and soften up. Not to mention that flavors from different cookies might end up mixing up and nobody wants that!
Luckily, there are ways to go around this deterioration. And ways to store baked cookies so that they keep perfectly until it’s time to gift them to your family and friends or serve them at various holiday parties.
6 helpful rules to help you store baked cookies
1. You can freeze them for long-term storage
If you are very busy right before the holidays, then making the cookies and then freezing them when you have some time is a pretty safe bet to make. The important thing to remember is to let the cookies completely cool off after you’ve baked them. Add them to an airtight container, in a single layer or stacked in multiple layers. For the latter option, add parchment paper between the layers. That way, you can store baked cookies for up to three months.
Crispy cookies keep better than soft cookies. Meringue-based cookies do not freeze well, so don’t do that!
When you need the cookies, make sure to take them out of the freezer and keep them in the refrigerator overnight. And then take them out of the fridge and let them come to room temperature.
But if you only need to store them fresh for about a week or so, you don’t have to freeze them, which takes us to the next point.
2. Keep them separate
If you are making different types of cookies, then don’t store all of them in the same container. Split them up according to type, crunchy versus soft, and keep the flavors separate as well if the flavors are strong.
You can’t keep soft and crispy cookies in the same place because the moisture from the soft ones tends to transfer to the crispy ones, and thus both are pretty much ruined. That’s a bit dramatic, but you get the idea.
3. Storing soft cookies
If you have soft gingerbread cookies and something like soft peanut butter cookies, yes, store them separately, otherwise, their flavors might influence each other in unpleasant ways. Here is a trick to help them stay soft enough: add a slice of white bread to the container they’re in so that the moisture in the bread transfers the cookies.
You can also add a slice of apple to them, but only if the cookies go well with apple flavor, cause some of that will transfer.
4. Storing crispy cookies
When it comes to crispy cookies, the idea is to keep them in a container that is not airtight. So, in fact, the opposite to soft cookies. The air the cookies are exposed to will keep away the moisture.
If they become soft, you can heat the cookies before using them in the oven for 3-5 minutes, at 300 degrees F/150 degrees C.
5. Keep at room temperature
Unless your recipe specifically requires it, freshly baked cookies, be them soft or crispy, should always be kept at room temperature.
6. Take care of decorated cookies
If you’ve already decorated your cookies, then protect them as much as you can, because they’re fragile. Soft or crispy, you should store them in layers, and add sheets of parchment paper between the layers, to make sure the icings or glazes don’t transfer where they don’t belong.