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Christmas is a time for family, friends, and of course, cookies. Baking Christmas cookies is a tradition that many families enjoy. But when is the earliest you can bake them without having them taste like cardboard?
As a whole, you can start baking Christmas cookies as early as 3 months in advance. The key is to use airtight containers which preserve freshness. At room temperature, they can stay fresh for up to a week, while in a fridge for up to 3 weeks. Freezing cookies prolong shelf life for up to 3 months.
Follow along as I dive deeper into this topic and reveal everything you need to know about how early you can bake Christmas cookies before Christmas.
How Far In Advance Can You Start Making Christmas Cookies Before Christmas?
Generally speaking, you can bake Christmas cookies three months prior and freeze them. You can store them in an airtight container at room temperature for 1-2 weeks or 2-3 weeks in the fridge. However, how far in advance you can bake your cookies depends on how you plan to store them.
I have noticed that when stored properly in the freezer, the cookies remain freshest for as long as possible.
You want to make sure you use a freezer-safe container and wrap each cookie individually in plastic wrap. This will help to keep them from sticking together and ensure that they retain their flavor and texture.
|At Room Temperature||In a Container||In the Fridge||In the Freezer|
|For up to 5 days||For up to a week||For up to 3 weeks||For up to 3 months|
I recently came across The Perfect-Sized Plastic Round Storage Containers that can fit anything in them from a pie to even cupcakes. These containers come in a 2-pack and are Microwave and Dishwasher safe! You can check out these containers on Amazon!
How Long do Cookies Stay Fresh in the Freezer?
Homemade or store-bought cookies can stay fresh in the freezer for up to 3 months. This is the ideal storage method to make your cookies well before Christmas.
To keep them fresh for longer, you want to avoid any moisture or freezer burn.
Make sure to let the cookies cool completely, wrap each cookie individually in plastic wrap, and store them in a freezer-safe container with a tight-fitting lid.
You can also use a zip-top bag, but make sure to push out as much air as possible before sealing it.
How Long do Cookies Store in the Fridge?
Cookies will last 2-3 weeks when stored in the fridge. This is a good option if you want to make your cookies a little closer to Christmas but don’t want them to go bad before the holiday.
Again, let the cookies cool completely and store them in an airtight container. You can also wrap them individually in plastic wrap before storing them in the container.
If your cookies are starting to dry out, you can add a slice of bread to the container. The bread will help to keep the cookies moist. Just make sure to check on the bread and replace it as needed.
Always make sure to first allow the cookies to fully cool after baking before storing them in the fridge or freezer.
According to an article on the Martha Stewart website, this is important to remember because
“If not cooled, the moisture generated by the heat will get trapped inside of the storage container and cause the cookies to get soggy.”
*By the way, I recently wrote an article talking about How Many Cookies Do You Need Per Person For Christmas. In this article, I created a calculation of how many cookies to make per person for Christmas. This is important to know so that you will always have enough cookies! You can check out this article here!
How Long do Cookies Stay Fresh in a Container?
How long cookies will store in a container depends on how well you store them. Generally, they will last 4-5 days when stored in an airtight container.
You want to make sure that the container is truly airtight. The cookies will absorb moisture from the air and become stale quickly if they are not stored properly.
Also, avoid storing the cookies in places with direct sunlight or near heat sources, as this will dry them out.
Dusty and moist places are also not ideal for storing cookies. Once you place the cookies in the container, put them in a cool and dry place, such as a pantry or cupboard.
How Long do Cookies Store at Room Temperature?
If you properly store your cookies in an airtight container, away from moisture and heat sources, they will last 1-2 weeks at room temperature.
As always, use an airtight container to keep away any moisture or outside flavors. Place the container in a cool, dry place.
*Side Note: You might also want to know How To Properly Store Cookies. I recently wrote an article that talks about all you need to know for Storing Cookies To Make Them Last, which you can check out here!
How Do You Keep Cookies Fresh For Christmas?
As a general rule, the best way to keep cookies fresh is to store them properly. This means letting them cool completely before storing them in an airtight container in the fridge, freezer, or room temperature if you plan to eat them within a week or two.
Here’s a video about the best ways to store cookies to keep them soft for longer:
*By the way, I recently wrote an article about What Is A Christmas Cookie Crawl. This article explains what is a Christmas cookie crawl and how it works. You can check out this article here!
Here are some more tips on how to keep your cookies fresh for Christmas:
When stored in a container at room temperature, keep them away from heat sources and direct sunlight. Be sure the container is clean and airtight.
Keep the cookie container somewhere dry and cool such as on the back shelf of your pantry.
When storing in the fridge, make sure the cookies are wrapped individually in plastic wrap or stored in a fridge-safe container with a tight-fitting lid.
Store the container towards the back of your fridge, away from other foods, as cookies can absorb flavors from other items.
For long-term storage in the freezer, cookies will stay fresh for up to 3 months. Use a zip-top bag or an airtight container with a tight-fitting lid. Be sure to push out as much air from the bag as possible before sealing it.
Also, it is important to store differently-flavored cookies separately, so they don’t taste like each other.
If you’re baking a lot of cookies at once, you will need a cooling rack that will be capable of holding a lot of cookies. I recently saw this Wilton Excelle 3-Tier Cooling Rack for Cookies that can hold at least 50 small sugar cookies at one time. You can check out this cooling rack on Amazon!
Do You Need To Refrigerate Christmas Cookies?
As a whole, It is okay to refrigerate Christmas cookies if you made them before the holiday or if you have had some left over after the holiday. If you are making them fresh the day before or on Christmas, it is not necessary to refrigerate them right away.
Storing them in the refrigerator is among the best ways to keep your cookies fresh. This is especially true if you have made a large batch of cookies and do not plan on eating them all within a week or two.
*Side Note: Reheating your cookies the right way is no simple task, If you’re looking to know if you can Reheat Your Cookies In An Air Fryer, I recently wrote an article that talks about What To Expect When Reheating Cookies in An Air Fryer, which you can check out here!
People also ask…
How long will cookies stay fresh in an airtight container?
Generally speaking, cookies will generally last 1-2 weeks when stored in an airtight container at room temperature. If placed in a refrigerator, it can stay fresh for up to three weeks. If in an airtight container, it can stay fresh in a freezer for up to 3 months.
How do you store Christmas cookies for a week?
As a general rule, the best way to store Christmas cookies for a week is by refrigeration. Make sure the cookies have fully cooled after baking and then store them in an airtight container. This ensures no moisture builds up in the container which can cause spoilage.
How far in advance can I bake sugar cookies before decorating?
As a whole, you can bake sugar cookies 4-5 days before decorating them. Be sure to store them properly in the fridge, so they do not dry out or become stale. Also, make sure that the cookies are fully cooled before decorating as it can cause your icing to melt.
*By the way, I recently wrote an article answering the popular question of How Many Days In Advance Can You Make Sugar Cookies? In this article, I spoke about all the ways you can keep your sugar cookies nice and fresh! You can check out this article here!
How far in advance can you ice sugar cookies?
Generally speaking, you can ice your sugar cookies 5-7 days in advance. Make sure to fully cool down your cookies after baking. Once done, proceed to ice your sugar cookies. When storing, make sure to use an airtight container and lay your cookies in a single layer with no overlaps.