Even though there are plenty of tricks for storing already-baked cookies, let’s be honest. Nothing competes with the goodness of a just-baked cookie.
That’s why I ALWAYS have frozen cookie dough in my freezer.
(Secret confession: I pretty much feel naked without cookie dough stashed somewhere in my freezer).
Having frozen cookie dough on hand means you can whip up a batch of homemade cookies any time in just minutes. This comes in handy when:
I’ve got lots of tips for freezing cookie dough included in the pink box below. Be sure to watch my video below to step into my kitchen with me as I show you step by step how to freeze cookie dough!
How to Freeze Cookie Dough:
Equipment you need to freeze cookie dough:
Which kinds of cookie dough are best to freeze?
Pretty much ANY drop-style cookie can be frozen successfully. Whether that be chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal, peanut butter, double chocolate… or anything in between. Notes on what to do with cookies rolled in sugar are below. Believe me, I wrote an entire cookbook about cookie baking so I’ve frozen my fair share of recipes!
If you’re making cut-out cookies, such as sugar cookies where you roll out the dough and cut it into shapes with a cookie cutter, those cookies are best frozen after baking.
How to freeze chocolate chip cookies or cookie dough balls:
1. Make the cookie dough as the recipe directs. Use a spring loaded cookie scoop to portion out balls of dough onto a parchment lined rimmed baking sheet.
BONUS TIP: If the recipe calls for chilling or ‘marinating’ the cookie dough (which does WONDERS for your cookies!!) then be sure to allow the dough to marinate before shaping and freezing.
2. Place the tray of cookie dough balls in the freezer. Freeze until firm and solid.
3. Remove the balls of cookie dough to a labeled and dated airtight container.
How to freeze cookies coated in sugar?
For cookies like snickerdoodles, which are rolled in cinnamon sugar before baking, you want to wait until just before baking to roll in sugar. So freeze the uncoated balls of cookie dough. Once ready to bake, roll in the sugar and follow the directions below for baking. If you find the sugar doesn’t stick as well to the frozen dough, allow it to thaw overnight in the fridge or at room temperature then bake as directed by the recipe.
How long can you freeze cookie dough for?
You can store cookie dough in the freezer for up to 6 weeks.
Does freezing cookie dough change the softness or thickness of cookies after baking?
Generally, the colder the dough is when it enters the oven the thicker the cookies will be. This also makes them softer!
How to bake frozen cookie dough:
You can either let the dough completely defrost overnight in the fridge or for a couple hours at room temperature and bake just as the recipe originally instructed.
OR, if you’re impatient like me, you can bake from frozen. Here are the steps…
1. Preheat the oven to about 20 degrees lower than the original recipe temperature.
2. Remove however many balls of dough you need from the freezer and place on a parchment-lined baking pan.
3. Bake the cookies for 2 to 5 minutes longer than the original recipe instructions, or until the cookies are golden at the edges but still slightly ‘wet’ looking at the very center.
Why do you have to lower the temperate when baking cookies from frozen?
Using the above technique helps the cookie dough melt and spread out evenly from a frozen state. If you bake as the recipe directs normally, you’ll likely get cookies that spread and crisp too much at the edges but stays super thick and undercooked in the center.
How to freeze baked cookies:
Practically all unfrosted, unglazed cookies can be frozen. Cut-out cookies (like sugar cookies) freeze particularly well in airtight containers for up to 1 month. Defrost to room temperature before decorating or serving.
If you’re enjoying something like chocolate chip cookies, you can also defrost and refresh in a 300°F oven for about 5 to 7 minutes, or until warmed through. An oven works better than a microwave, which will usually result in mushy cookies.
See how easy it is? Freezing cookie dough is the BEST. I hope you found this helpful.