Cookies are appealing to all of us for a variety of reasons. They’re small enough to fit in a purse or backpack, come in a variety of flavors to satisfy any sweet craving, and can put a grin on just about anyone’s face.
The lifespan of cookies is dependent on the type of cookie, how it is stored, whether it is opened or not, and other considerations. In the pantry, most unopened cookies last 1-2 months. Cookies that have already been opened have a lifespan of 7 to 21 days.
Bakery or homemade cookies can be kept for two to three weeks at room temperature or two months in the refrigerator. When cookies are frozen for eight to twelve months, they keep their quality.
Keep reading to learn more about the shelf life of different types of cookies and if they ever go bad.
Cookie Sensitivity to Spoiling
Homemade and bakery-bought cookies can be indulgent, while packaged cookies are a safe bet.
When it comes to store-bought cookies, the preservatives that are added to the packaged cookies can help them last longer. However, even with preservatives, most cookies only have a shelf life of two to three months.
The shelf life of cookies can be affected by how sensitive they are to spoiling. If a cookie is made with more perishable ingredients, it will have a shorter lifespan. For example, shortbread cookies last about two weeks because they contain butter.
On the other hand, sugar cookies can last for months because they don’t contain dairy products.
Cookies that are made with dried fruit or nuts can also go bad more quickly because these ingredients can harbor bacteria.
When it comes to homemade cookies, they can last for a shorter period of time because they don’t contain preservatives.
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How Long Do Cookies Last?
The shelf life of cookies is determined by several factors, including the sell-by date, the manner of production, and how the cookies were stored.
Due to their low cost and high-calorie density, cookies are a popular and easily transportable dessert due to their low cost.
There are many types of cookies, each of them prepared differently and all of them have different shelf lives.
- Drop Cookies: These cookies are made by dropping dough onto a baking sheet. The most common drop cookie is the chocolate chip cookie, which can last for up to six weeks if stored properly.
- Baked Cookies: These cookies are made by baking dough that has been shaped into balls or cylinders on a baking sheet. Baked cookies have a shorter shelf life than drop cookies and can last for two to three weeks.
- Bar Cookies: These cookies are made by pressing dough into a pan and then cutting them into bars once they have been baked. Bar cookies can last for up to four weeks if stored properly.
- Cut Out Cookies: These cookies are made by cutting the dough into shapes with a cookie cutter. Cut-out cookies can last for up to four weeks if stored properly.
- Pressed Cookies: These cookies are made by pressing dough into a mold or using a cookie press. Pressed cookies can last for up to six weeks if stored properly.
- Icebox Cookies: These cookies are made by pressing dough into a mold or using a cookie press. Icebox cookies can last for up to eight weeks if stored properly.
- Shortbread Cookies: These cookies are made with a high ratio of fat to flour. Shortbread cookies can last for up to two weeks if stored properly.
- Sugar Cookies: These cookies are made with a high ratio of sugar to flour. Sugar cookies can last for up to three months if stored properly.
- Twice-Baked Cookies: Biscotti and mandelbrot, for example, have a longer shelf life than most other handcrafted cookies. Twice-baked cookies have a shorter shelf life than baked cookies and can last for one to two weeks.
- Delicate Cookies: Pizzelle, florentines, tuiles, and brandy snaps are all delicious sweets. However, storing these delicate bakes takes some finesse (and they don’t have a lengthy shelf-life). Delicate cookies can last for up to two days if stored properly.
- Frosted Cookies: These cookies have a layer of frosting or icing on top. Frosted cookies can last for up to two weeks if stored properly.
- Chocolate Chips Cookie: Chocolate chip cookies can last for up to eight weeks if stored properly.
- Oatmeal Raisin Cookie: Oatmeal raisin cookies can last for up to four weeks if stored properly.
- Thumbprint Cookie: Thumbprint cookies can last for up to two weeks if stored properly.
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The key to extending the shelf life of your cookies is to store them properly.
Most packaged cookies can be stored at room temperature in a dry, cool place. Once you open the package, it’s best to eat the cookies within a week or two.
Homemade cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week.
When it comes to storing delicate cookies, the key is to keep them cool and dry. Delicate cookies can be stored in a covered cookie jar or tin in the fridge for up to two days.
To extend the shelf life of your cookies, follow these storage tips:
- Store drop cookies in an airtight container.
- Store baked, cut out, and pressed cookies in a covered cookie jar or tin.
- Store bar cookies in a covered cake pan or plastic wrap.
- Store similar cookies together.
- Do not store homemade cookies in the fridge or freezer until it includes any frosting that needs to be frozen.
- Store frosted cookies in one layer instead of stacking one on one.
- Vacuum pack the cookies.
- Use a CO2 pad.
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Signs That Your Cookies Are Spoiled
Even if you store your cookies properly, they can still go bad. Here are some signs to look for that indicate your cookies have spoiled:
- The cookies are discolored or have changed in texture.
- The cookies have an off scent.
- The cookies have an off-taste.
- The cookies are moldy.
- Soft cookies turn into a hard and dry cookies, and hard cookies turn soft and moist.
What Can Be Done With Spoiled Cookie
If your cookies have gone bad, there’s no need to throw them out. There are a few things you can do with spoiled cookies:
- Use them as crumbs for ice cream toppings or milkshakes.
- Use them as a cereal topping.
- Add them to yogurt.
- Bake them into a new batch of cookies.
- Use them as a pie filling.
- Use them as a cake topper.
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In conclusion, can cookies go bad? Absolutely. Will it be the end of the world if they do? Probably not. There are plenty of things you can do with spoiled cookies, so don’t sweat it too much if your batch goes bad.
Just be sure to store them properly in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. And if in doubt, throw them out. Better safe than sorry!