How to bake & thaw cookie dough from frozen: expert hacks

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If you’re wanting to make cookies from frozen, there might be a few questions you have!

For instance, is baking frozen cookie dough the same as baking room temperature cookie dough?

Do you use different oven settings, do you need to thaw, and will the quality drop?

Freezing cookie dough is one of the easiest ways to keep your dough as leftovers and to attempt to action a bit of portion control (I said attempt!), but when it comes time to baking, there are a few things to keep in mind.

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In this guide, we’re going to over exactly how to bake frozen cookie dough and what mistakes not to make.

It’s not that hard, just takes a small amount of adjustment.

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Is it possible to bake frozen cookie dough?

Let’s talk the real facts before we keep going: is it even possible to bake frozen cookie dough?

Yes, absolutely, people bake frozen cookie dough all of the time, both right out of the freezer and also after thawing.

Yay!

The difference between frozen cookie dough and room temperature cookie dough in the baking process

Now let’s talk about the actual quality of your frozen cookie dough cookies and what might happen to the taste.

As everyone knows, the freezing process changes the state of your dough from something malleable to, well, a frozen ball of dough.

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Will this affect your cookies in the long run?

While, yes, there can be slight differences in a cookie baked from frozen, the difference should not be noticeable for most people, and the tips below should help you make sure that your cookies aren’t suffering.

As an overall rule, frozen cookie dough may lead to puffier cookies.

Why’s that?

Well, the butter is obviously extremely chilled when it’s frozen, which makes it take longer to melt in the oven, meaning your cookies should spread less and be “taller.”

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Often, you may end up with a cookie that is a bit more crisp on the outside and gooey in the middle rather than something with a more consistent texture if you baked it from room temperature.

If you do want a cookie that more closely resembles a “normal” one not baked from frozen, you can just thaw the dough as we talk about below and then you’ll be much closer to a “normal” texture.

Exactly how to bake frozen cookie dough

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Let’s say you’ve got your frozen cookie dough balls and you don’t have time to thaw (or don’t want) to.

How do you bake cookie dough from frozen?

Use one of these tips below.

This is assuming you have pre-frozen the dough into smaller balls rather than all in one big dough ball, as that will definitely need to be thawed.

1. Bake for 1-2 minutes more than usual

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This is one of the easiest ways to bake frozen cookie dough, as you’re going to leave the oven at whatever the original recipe temperature is and simply leave them in for 1 or 2 minutes longer.

They will go a little bit crispy on the outside, but the extra time is going to give the inside more of a chance to bake thoroughly and you’ll get a cookie very similar to one baked from room temperature.

Also, let’s be honest, there’s basically no effort involved in this which means it’s a-okay in our books, as well as those of all of the bakers out there who just want the cookies done as fast as possible with as little work possible (no shame).

2. Begin with the oven at a higher temperature, and then lower it

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If you’re baking cookies from frozen dough, you can actually increase the temperature on your oven to about 20 degrees (F) higher than what the recipe states. So, preheat at 20 degrees higher.

Then, after about 3 minutes of the cookies being in, decrease the temperature.

This is the most finicky, but worth a shot if you don’t want that extra crisp on the outside that you’d get with Step 1 and are happy to stick around in the kitchen fiddling with the temperatures.

3. Decrease the temperature by 20 degrees and bake for longer

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Another easy option is to actually decrease the temperature that the recipe calls for by 20 degrees F.

Then, to compensate for that, bake for about 4 minutes longer than you would have originally.

Lowering the temperature is going to be a slower, but more gentle baking method and give our cookies time to bake evenly without absolutely scorching them.

4. Add 20 degrees to the baking temperature

If you are wanting to get those cookies done as fast as possible, just whack the temperature on the oven up 20 degrees F higher than the recommended temperature and put them in for the recommended amount of time.

Because of this, you’ll end up with a crispy outside and a gooey inside (which can be a benefit), as leaving the cookies in a hotter oven will make the outside bake but leave the inside a bit more soft without as much time to cook through.

Again, some people swear by this and do it on purpose for gooey cookies, so give it a try!

How do I thaw frozen cookie dough?

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Whether you want more “traditionally” baked cookies or you’ve actually frozen your entire cookie dough ball in one big mass that you can’t really bake up without thawing, here are some ideas.

How do I thaw cookie dough at room temperature?

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Leave the cookie dough out on the counter at room temperature and give it about 1 and a half hours to thaw, based on what else is going on in your kitchen.

This means you can go away and do other things, which makes it all super easy!

It may take less time than that, but 1 and a half hours is a good benchmark.

How do I thaw frozen cookie dough?

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If you want a bit slower of a process, but one you don’t have to keep an eye on as much, you can actually put your frozen cookie dough in the fridge and let it thaw out overnight.

Just bake it the next day as normal with the original recipe, and you’ll be good to go!

It will take longer to thaw out in the fridge, but you can leave it for longer and not worry about it growing any weird bacteria like if you left it out at room temperature.

Hey! Want more expert cookie baking hacks? Check these out!

How to bake & thaw cookie dough from frozen: expert hacks via @nofusskitchen
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