How To Store Your Holiday Cookies So They Last

Let no cookie go to waste.

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How to store cookies: Chestnut meltaway cookies

Time spent in the kitchen should yield cookies (whether they’re fancy showstoppers, or easy basics) that stay delicious until the very last one is eaten. Storing cookies properly will ensure your hard work is properly preserved — whether keeping ginger snaps crisp and or cooking from frozen.  Whether you’ve sweated over a single batch, or devoted a weekend to a multi-cookie baking bonanza, the tips below will ensure your work stays in tip-top shape — keeping that fresh from the oven feeling — no matter when you serve them.

Let cookies cool completely before storing

This may seem obvious, but it’s worth remembering. Any warmth will cause condensation inside the container — a.k.a. soggy cookies — so don’t rush to pack them up.

Use an airtight container — especially for chewy cookies

An airtight container will preserve the cookies’ freshness the longest. Tip: A less-secure seal helps keep the snap on crisp cookies, so feel free to use tins for that batch of gingersnaps.

Butter pecan crescent cookies

Store these snow-dusted butter pecan cookies in an airtight tin.

Store different-flavoured cookies in separate containers

That extra-large container may be able to handle more than four dozen gingerbread cookies — but if you also made, say a batch of mint-chocolate cookies, do not store them together. Strong flavours will leech into any cookie in the space (and mint-ginger cookies probably weren’t on the original menu).

Store soft cookies separately from crisp cookies

Beautifully crisp gingersnaps will lose their crunchy bite after time spent in a container with a soft or chewy cookie, as cookies will pull moisture from each other. (Ultimately, neither benefits from being stored together.)

Let gingerbread sit awhile

The flavours continue to develop over time (especially for our ginger speculaas cookies), and will benefit from being made a bit earlier than you need them.

Small batch chocolate chip cookies

Layer your cookies between parchment before storing. (Photo, Sian Richards.)

Don’t forget parchment paper

Delicate cookies like whipped shortbread or decorated ones — like our painted butter cookies — are best stored in between layers of parchment paper. It prevents sticking and breaking, particularly when on the move.

Use the freezer

Frozen baked cookies can last for up to a month, so don’t be afraid to bake a few extra batches when there’s time, and put them in the freezer until the day you need them. Bonus: Freezing cookie dough works even better — it allows you to bake up fresh cookies at a moment’s notice. Depending on the cookie, you can bake from frozen (pre-portioned chunky cookie dough, like chocolate chip, or oatmeal), from slightly thawed (icebox cookie dough logs), or from all-the-way thawed (gingerbread cookie dough).

Originally published December 2017; Updated November 2018.

Watch: Make It Fancy – Cookie Packaging