If you’ve got a batch of cookie dough that you don’t want to make yet, or you’ve got some extra, you might want to know, “how long does cookie dough last?”
Cookie dough is very versatile, easily stored, and can definitely last longer than you think it might before being baked into those perfect cookies that the whole family will love.
For the short answer: cookie dough lasts for 6 hours at room temperature, 5 days in the fridge, and 6 months in the freezer.
However, there are more specific answers and caveats based on the method you’re using to store the cookies, so read on for each method to learn more (and don’t forget that the “use by” date is never the same as the “best by” date!)
If you want the full guide to how to store your cookies once they’re baked, don’t forget to check out our guide to storing cookies and keeping them fresh as well.
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How Long Does Cookie Dough Last at Room Temperature?
Whether you’ve accidentally left your cookie dough out on the counter or it’s just taking you a really long time to bake them on the day of cooking, you might need to know how long cookie dough lasts at room temperature.
The guideline for food safety reasons is 4 to 6 hours at the maximum, with 6 hours being for a colder climate and 4 months being in a very hot kitchen in the heat of the summer.
Ideally, you should always just avoid any issues with cookie dough at room temperature by popping the cookie dough in the fridge if you want to use it a few hours later, wrapped in plastic wrap.
But if you have forgotten or are looking this up because it’s already been a few hours since the cookie dough has been out at room temperature, use your discretion but make sure it’s not longer than 4-6 hours.
This is because the ingredients in raw cookie dough like eggs need to be refrigerated and can contain harmful bacteria if left out for too long.
Must-Have Baking Tools (seriously)
- Silicone baking mats – I use this brand and my cookies slide right off without burning!
- a cookie scoop – get this one. It makes the perfect rounded cookies every time!
- silicone spatula – try this set. It’s the best way to get the most out of your dough and batters
- rolling pin guides – I use this one. Genius way to roll your dough out evenly!
How Long Does Cookie Dough Last in the Fridge?
The general guidelines for cookie dough lasting in the refrigerator is 5-7 days.
This would be 5-7 days of being wrapped in plastic wrap so it’s airtight, though some bakers find that they can go about 10 days at the maximum.
However, the cookie dough is not necessarily going to bake up as nice if you use it after 7 days in the fridge, as it can tend to get dry and possibly have a bit less rise when you bake them.
For optimal results and for the dough to bake up almost the same as it would have after you created the dough, try to use it from the fridge in 2-3 days.
And, of course, many cookie recipes actually require you chill the dough overnight or for 24 hours anyway, so in that case, you can start counting the days from 24 hours after you first put it in.
Another method that some bakers use is that your cookie dough will last in the fridge for as long as the individual ingredient’s expiration dates (ie, if the eggs are past their best 4 days into your cookie dough being in the fridge, then your cookie dough should not be used).
How Long Does Cookie Dough Last in the Freezer?
Freezing cookie dough is the best way to get the most out of your dough if you can’t use it right away or have extra.
We’ve got an entire guide on freezing your cookie dough, and the reason it’s so popular is because your cookie dough will last for up to 6 months in the freezer.
For optimal results, use cookie dough from the freezer within 2-3 months, but you can go up to 6 months based on food safety guidelines.
The cookie dough just might be a bit dry and crumbly when you try to use it.
After that, use at your own discretion.