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One of our family’s favorite quick treats is the no-bake cookies. These chocolatey desserts are made even more decadent thanks to the generous amount of peanut butter that goes into them.
As a general rule, you can store no-bake cookies on the counter, in the fridge, or even in the freezer. The preparation is quite simple and has a long shelf-life as long as they are properly stored in air-tight containers and placed in the correct environments.
I don’t have to turn on the stove and heat up the whole house, which makes them one of my favorite treats. These cookies are easily adaptable to our busy lifestyle and active family, especially with how long these cookies can last. Read on for proper storage tips!
How to Store No-Bake Cookies Properly
As a general rule, no-bake cookies should be stored in an airtight container or zip lock bag. You can choose to store them in either the refrigerator or at room temperature. When storing no-bake cookies, you should always make sure that there is a layer of parchment paper between the cookies.
The worst way to ruin a batch of no-bake cookies that you have stored is to store them improperly, without parchment paper keeping them separate. Doing this can result in the cookies getting torn apart. While they will still taste delicious, it can ruin the look of the cookies, which can matter if you are serving them to guests.
If making a large batch, stacking the cookies with the use of parchment paper will help prevent the cookies from sticking to both the container and other cookies.
How long cookies can last with different methods of storage:
|Counter Top||Sealed Container||Refrigerator||Freezer|
|Can last for up to 3 days if left out at room temperature||Can last for a week||Can last for up to 3 weeks||Can last for up to 6 months|
*By the way, for a long time, I was looking for a way to store my cookies without them breaking and losing their shape. I recently came across a great Set of Flat Storage Containers that worked great for storing my cookies flat in the fridge and freezer without breaking them! You can check out this Storage Set on Amazon!
In our house, no-bake cookies are typically kept in an air-tight Tupperware container on the counter. These cookies never last very long, because they are a family favorite. But if it will be a few days until I will serve them, I will place the same container in the refrigerator.
Do No-Bake Cookies Spoil? Can They Go Bad?
As a whole, no-bake cookies can spoil or go bad just like other desserts. Although no-bake cookies have a longer shelf life than many other types of cookies, they can still end up making you sick if you eat ones that have gone bad or spoiled.
Since no-bake cookies are typically left out on the counter in an air-tight container, I always make sure that I check any cookies before my family eats them.
Changes in humidity or temperature can result in no-bake cookies spoiling more quickly.
It is especially important to check if they have been on the counter for more than a week, or if the air is particularly humid.
*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 Can You Tell if No-Bake Cookies Are Bad?
Use your senses to tell if no-bake cookies are bad. Smell the cookies to see if there is an odd odor coming from them that you wouldn’t expect. Also carefully examine the cookies to make sure there are no hints of mold growing on the cookies.
*By the way, if you’re looking for some new cookie sheets/baking pans to replace for your kitchen, I recently came across the Perfect Nonstick Cookie Sheets / Baking Sheets Set that I got for myself and they work great! You can check out these Nonstick Cookie Sheet Set on Amazon!
No-bake cookies may also go stale. In order to check to see if your no-bake cookies are stale, look to see if they have become brittle and easily breakable.
A no-bake cookie that is not stale will retain its gooey texture, while a stale one will not.
You can always eat stale cookies. However, they will not taste as good as the cookies that are still fresh. Unlike moldy or spoiled cookies, a stale cookie will not make you sick.
How to Prevent Mold on Your No-Bake Cookies
To prevent mold from growing, store the no-bake cookies in an airtight container in your refrigerator or freezer. While you can store your no-bake cookies on the counter, access to heat, light and humid air can all result in the growth of mold.
A tightly sealed container can also help cut down on the growth of mold on your no-bake cookies. This prevents any excess moisture from lingering on the cookies which would promote mold growth.
*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!
How Long Do No-Bake Cookies Last At Room Temperature?
As a whole, no-bake cookies can last for up to a week at room temperature if properly stored. In order to last this long, you will need to store the cookies in a container that does not allow air to reach the cookies as well as in a spot with minimal light to prevent condensation from forming.
If you are planning to leave your cookies out on the counter at room temperature, it is absolutely crucial that you store them away from direct sunlight.
If you leave the cookies in direct sunlight, the moisture inside of the cookies will start to evaporate inside of the container.
As a result, condensation will form and turn your delicious cookies into a soggy mess. Make sure to store in a shaded area away from any windows!
*By the way, I recently wrote an article about Why Your Cookies Might Not be Spreading. This article speaks about all the reasons your cookies will remain in a ball instead of spreading into a cookie shape. You can check out this article here!
How Long Do No-Bake Cookies Last In Containers?
On average, no-bake cookies can last up to a week in containers kept on the counter. They can last up to two weeks in containers if you place them in the refrigerator. No-bake cookies properly stored in the freezer in air-tight containers for up to six months.
Airtight containers are important for no-bake cookies because they will keep them from drying out and becoming brittle. A proper no-bake cookie should always have a gooey quality to them, and storing them in an airtight container will maintain that quality.
*Side Note: I recently wrote an article talking about If Cookies Have To Be Round. This article breaks down why most cookies are round and how to bake cookies in different shapes. You can check out this article here!
Should I Store No-Bake Cookies in the Fridge?
As a general rule, storing no-bake cookies in the fridge is optional. Although you can store the cookies in the fridge, you do not have to do so. No-bake cookies will last approximately 1-2 weeks longer if you store them properly in the fridge.
You know your family best and can determine whether you need to store your cookies for a longer amount of time. But if your family is as ambitious about eating no-bake cookies as mine is, you will not need to worry about placing your no-bake cookies in the fridge.
However, if you are making the cookies ahead of time, about a few days in advance, I would definitely recommend storing them in the fridge to retain their freshness.
*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!
Can You Freeze No-Bake Cookies?
As a whole, you can freeze no-bake cookies if stored properly. The cookies should be placed in either a freezer bag or an airtight container. This method allows the no-bake cookies to last for up to six months in the freezer. It is a great method for big batches.
Follow these tips for freezing no-bake cookies:
- Make sure that the batch of no-bake cookies has completely cooled off before you place it into the freezer*.
- Line each airtight container with foil or food wrap.
- Place parchment paper between layers or wrap cookies in plastic wrap.
*This goes for no-bake cookies recipes that require an ingredient to be heated up before mixing into the batter
*Side Note: I’m surprised at how many people don’t know what a Cookie Swap is. I recently wrote an article that explains exactly What Is A Cookie Swap and How To Host One For Your Holidays!
How to Store No-Bake Cookies in the Freezer?
You can store no-bake cookies in the freezer by placing them in an air-tight container. Either a Tupperware container or freezer-safe plastic bag will work, and you can easily expect the cookies to last for up to six months with this method of storage.
You can either place them in a container (see previous steps) or place them into freezer bags. If you are going to place the cookies into freezer bags, make sure to individually wrap your cookies in plastic wrap.
This is important because the cookies will stick to each other and freeze with the risk of cracking or breaking. This also is great if you only want to thaw a certain amount of cookies rather than the entire batch.
Will Storing No-Bake Cookies Help Them Harden?
Storing no-bake cookies in the fridge is the best way to allow them to harden. This is ideal if your cookies refuse to harden on the counter. The reason that this works is that the peanut butter or chocolate may not set properly while at room temperature, but may set once they have cooled down.
If you ever put a stick of butter out to get room temperature, you will notice that it gets soft, yet it will harden if you put it in the refrigerator.
This same principle will sometimes allow no-bake cookies to set if you place them in the fridge.
Because the use of ingredients such as peanut butter, almond butter, and chocolate are used (depending on the recipe you are using) cooler environments allow them to set quicker.
How Long Should No-Bake Cookies Take to Harden?
On average, no-bake cookies will take up to 1 hour to harden if left out at room temperature. If you place them in the refrigerator, they will take less time than that to harden. Placing them in the fridge on a sheet pan will allow the cookies to set within 30 minutes.
Why Did Your No-Bake Cookies Not Harden?
If your no-bake cookies retain their gooey form too much and refuse to set up, you likely have one of two problems:
- You did not boil the sugar, butter, milk and cocoa mixture long enough.
- You boiled the mixture too long.
A simple possible fix is to just allow the cookies to set in the fridge. The cold environment will help the cookies harden. In these cases, I would recommend storing the cookies in the fridge as well. If stored at room temperature, they may lose their firm texture.
*Side Note: I recently wrote an article that breaks down Can You Use Bread Flour To Bake Cookies. This article talks about what you should expect when Baking Cookies With Bread Flour. You can check out this article here!
Tips for Making Sure Your No-Bake Cookies Turn Out Well
Before you store your no-bake cookies, you want to make sure you have a batch worth preserving. To make sure your no-bake cookies are the best ones possible, follow these tricks:
- Make sure you always boil your mixture over medium-high temperatures.
- Do not use low-fat peanut butter or low-fat margarine.
- Add more oats if your mixture looks too thin.
- Always use the type of oats that your recipe calls for; substituting the wrong oats can result in overly chewy no-bake cookies.
As a result, no-bake cookies are super easy to make as long as you follow the recipe you are using properly! Low-fat products don’t bind and moisturize batter well. That is why I highly recommend using full-fat products to achieve the optimal cookies!
*Side Note: I recently wrote an article talking about If Homemade Cookies Healthier than Store-Bought Cookies. This article discusses the similarities and differences of how both of these are made and which is better. You can check out this article here!
We all have our lazy days! Sometimes I just want something sweet to munch on but don’t want to go through the hassle of turning on my oven. No-bake cookies are a large staple in my family and such a delicious treat.
Knowing how to properly store no-bake cookies allows us to enjoy them longer and appreciate their deliciousness!