How to Soften Hard Cookies: 7 Easy Ways

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You’ve been looking forward to enjoying your batch of cookies, but you bite into one only to realize that they’re hard as a rock.

How do you soften hard cookies?

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Dry, hard cookies are some people’s favorite kind, but for most of it, we want that soft bite to our cookies.

Is there anything you can do to fix a dry cookie?

Luckily, yes there is!

Check out these tips for how to soften stale cookies and how to soften overbaked cookies to learn more.

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Our Favorite Quirky Kitchen Gadgets

1. Put it in the microwave

If you really don’t want to put much effort into softening your cookies, then just go ahead and put it in the microwave for 20-30 seconds when you’re ready to eat them.

It will temporarily soften your cookie, but if you let it cool again then you’ll notice that it goes back to being hard.

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The best plan of action is to put the cookies in, microwave, and then immediately eat them while they’re still soft (but don’t burn your mouth!)

Never put them back into the oven to soften them. That’s a recipe for making them go even harder!

2. Store them with bread

One of the most popular ways of making hard cookies soft is to store them with bread. Yes, with bread.

You’ll want an airtight container, like a mason jar, as well as a slice of bread.

Make sure to pick a type of bread, like white bread, that doesn’t have an intense flavor because your cookies may take on the flavor of the bread if you opt for something like a rye or flavored bread.

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Put the bread at the bottom of the jar, and then put your cookies on top.

Leave it overnight, and you should have softer cookies the next day.

If you don’t, yet, then go ahead and wait another 12ish hours and check again.

After 24 hours has passed, you’ve probably reached the softest you’re going to get to using this method, but you can keep refreshing the bread as well.

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This works because the cookies absorb the moisture from the bread, making your cookies much softer.

3. Store the cookies with sugar cubes in an airtight container

Want to know how to fix dry cookies?

Try putting them in an airtight container with sugar cubes!

This has a similar reasoning to the bread option, as the cookies will absorb any moisture from the sugar cubes when they’re stored in the container together.

sugar cubes
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Put the sugar cubes on the bottom of the container and your cookies on top, and then wait about 12 hours.

Not everybody swears by this method, but if you have sugar cubes, plenty of people say that it works.

4. Microwave with a damp towel over them

If you want a quick fix to soften your dry cookies, but don’t have much more time than the microwave method, add just a small extra step.

Instead of microwaving your cookies with nothing on top of them, add a damp paper towel (not soaking wet, but damp).

paper towels
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Microwave for about 20-30 seconds, and then take them out and eat right away.

The cookies will absorb some of the moisture from the damp paper towel and it will also help them not to harden even more in the microwave.

5. Dunk them in tea or hot chocolate

Here’s one of those classic, tried and tested ways to make those rock hard cookies soft in an instant!

Dunk them in something!

You’ll make them softer by dunking them in something hot, like tea or hot chocolate (cookies dunked in hot chocolate are incredible).

cookies and hot chocolate
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But you can also use something like milk if you want to stick to the usual “milk and cookies” combination.

The liquid is going to help turn the cookies a bit mushier, which is going to bring a rock solid cookie to a cookie that you can actually sink your teeth into.

Leave the cookie in the liquid for about 20 seconds for best results – a quick dunk won’t be long enough and will simply coat your cookie in liquid without really penetrating into it.

6. Store them with a slice of apple

Oh, yes, it’s true.

Got apple slices? They can work similar to the bread and sugar cubes when paired with cookies in an airtight container.

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Throw a few apple slice in the bottom of a mason jar or really secure tupperware, and then put your cookies on top.

You may end up with apple-tasting cookies (particularly good if they’re already sugar or cinnamon flavored), but the cookies should absorb the moisture from the apples within about 12 to 24 hours and end up softer.

7. Put them in a container with a damp paper towel

If you don’t have bread, apples, or sugar cubes, or you’re really not too happy about your cookies tasting like bread or apples (we don’t blame you), you’ve got another options when it comes to softening your hard cookies.

mason jars with fruit inside
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Get an airtight container, and put a damp paper towel covered in foil at the bottom.

Poke some holes in the foil with a fork so that the moisture can escape through the barrier.

Add cookies on top, and wait about 12 hours.

This is another great way of getting the cookies to absorb moisture.

cookies in a basket
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If you don’t wrap the foil around the damp paper towel, your cookies could just become soggy or wet instead of decadently soft, so make sure to wrap the paper towel in foil for this method.

Hey! Want more genius cookie hacks? Check these out?

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