You’ve burned your cookies in the oven because you got distracted scrolling the Internet or cooking your dinner (it happens).
How do you fix burned cookies?
Is there any hope of learning how to fix cookies that are burned or should you just throw them away and start again?
The easiest way to fix burned cookies is to scrape off the burnt parts with a knife with short and fast strokes, but there are plenty of other options to help.
Obviously, once they’re cooked too long, you can’t unburn them or turn back time (trust me, my past baking fails and kitchen wishes that were possible).
How do you fix burned cookies while still making them presentable, or, at the very least, edible?
Here are 7 genius ways!
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1. Scrape off the burnt cookie with a cheese grater
A lot of people don’t think about other tools they can use to fix a burnt cookie besides a knife, but there are lots of other kitchen tools that can help!
Try using a cheese grater to gently scrape off the burnt bottoms (or top).
This gives you a more natural look, usually, and can be safer than trying to use a knife.
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!
2. Scrape off the burnt cookie with a zester
Much like a cheese grater, but with smaller holes, a zester (or the zest function on your grater) is another great option when figuring out how to fix burnt cookies, as you can take it slow and easy so you don’t destroy the entire cookie in the quest to make it look a bit more presentable.
Do short strokes, quickly, rather than long ones, and make sure to take a break to look at your cookie often instead of just zesting it into oblivion.
3. Scrape off the burnt cookie with a knife
One of the most popular way to deal with burned cookies is to grab a butter knife, and, using the sharper end, scrape off the burnt parts of the cookie.
This will likely end up with tons of burnt parts ending up all over your kitchen counter, but it’s pretty foolproof and is something that we all have in our kitchens.
Again, do short scrapes, not long ones, similar to scraping burn off of toast.
If you had lots of mix-ins in your cookies, and the tops are burnt, this can also give you a bit more control than using a grater which is just going to grate the entire top off of a cookie rather than specific parts in and around the mix-ins.
4. Cover the cookies with frosting
If the burned bits are too much to scrape off, go ahead and use the old baking trick of covering it in frosting!
Whether you choose buttercream frosting or glaze frosting or royal icing, you can totally just whip up a batch or buy a jar of frosting and slather it allll over the cookie so no one ever knows it was burnt.
This only works if it’s not completely burned to a crisp all the way through and is still edible, of course.
5. Crumble the cookies and use it as a topping
If you feel like your cookies are beyond repair and too burnt to live their lives as a cookie, try crumbling the cookies to use as a topping on ice cream or other dessert.
This is perfect for cookies that you would be embarrassed to give to someone and might not taste great on their own, and can give them a new life.
Put the cookies in a Ziploc bag and crumble with your hands or pound them with something hard in the kitchen like the bottom of a cup.
6. Make cookie sandwiches
If the bottoms of your cookies are burned, you won’t be able to frost them….or can you?
If you make cookie sandwiches, by icing the bottoms of two cookies and then putting them together in a sandwich, you can totally hide burnt bottoms with delicious icing and your cookie sandwiches will look like you just went the extra mile to create a fun cookie treat.
If the tops are burnt as well, this might not work as well as it will only hide the bottoms, but you can use the scraping techniques for the top OR do a mega-frosted cookie sandwich by frosting the tops of the cookies as well.
7. Cut off the bottom of the cookies
Some cookies that are a bit softer may react okay to having the bottoms thinly sliced off with a knife.
You’ll want to use a sharp knife for this, not a blunt butter knife, so make sure that you’re careful around fingers and other limbs in the kitchen.
This won’t work as well on a crumbly cookie like shortbread, but it’s worth attempting with thicker cookies if you feel the bottoms are really far gone into the land of the way-too-crispy cookies.