FREEZE! Time-savers for the holidays.

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So what’s up with this enormous baking sheet of unbaked chocolate chip cookies?

“Surely you’re not going to bake them like THAT,” you say.

You’re right. I’m not going to bake them like THAT.

I’m going to freeze them…

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…like this. And put ’em in a plastic bag, and leave them in the freezer till I need them.

And then, when the need arises, bake them…

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…like this.

Serving my holiday guests fresh, hot, homemade chocolate chip cookies within a mere 15 minutes or so of the time they unexpectedly drop by.

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And then there’s the age-old quandary of how to serve hot sticky buns for breakfast without getting up at 3 a.m.

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And how to put warm, bacon-and-cheese breakfast scones on the table in less than an hour.

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And what to do about those times when late afternoon stretches into early evening, and you’re enjoying a glass of wine with your girlfriend, and you’re both craving something hot and flaky and savory and CHEESY…

The answer to all of these conundrums is simple.

Make. FREEZE. Bake. Enjoy.

Here’s how:

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Let’s start with sticky buns.

Make our Ridiculously Easy No-Knead Sticky Buns up to the point where they’ve risen in the pan, prior to baking. (Since these buns were slated to be a gift, I made them in one of our 8″ bakeable paper pans – no worries about getting the pan back.)

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Carefully place them in a plastic bag, one large enough to “tent” over the risen buns. Place the bag in the freezer. When the buns are frozen solid, gently press the bag more tightly around them, and reseal.

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The late-afternoon before the morning you want to serve the buns, remove them from the freezer. Unseal, and “poof” the bag up a bit, so it’s not touching the buns. Reseal, place the buns in the refrigerator, and let them thaw overnight.

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Next morning, remove them from the fridge, and take them out of the bag. Let them sit at room temperature while you preheat your oven.

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Bake as directed in the recipe, adding about 5 to 10 minutes to the total time. Nice oven-spring, eh?

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Remove from the oven, and serve hot, to great acclaim from your wondering family.

“How did she DO that so fast?!”

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Now, let’s look at those Bacon Cheddar-Chive Scones, a decadent breakfast treat. If you plan ahead, you can take them from freezer to table in just about 45 minutes.

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Make Bacon-Cheddar-Chive Scones up to the point where you’ve shaped them and put them on the baking sheet. Don’t brush with cream.

Instead, tent with plastic wrap and put them in the freezer. When they’re totally frozen, put them in a plastic bag, and seal the bag.

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It helps to label the bag: what’s in the bag, date, and baking instructions.

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When you hear the family starting to stir around, preheat your oven to 425°F, and take the scones out of the freezer. Put them on a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet, and brush with cream.

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If they weren’t frozen, they’d bake for about 25 minutes, as noted on the bag. But since they’re frozen, they’ll need more time – about 40 to 45 minutes, total.

“How did she DO that so fast?!”

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Let’s go back to those cookies. There’s nothing, and I mean NOTHING, so warm and inviting as chocolate chip cookies right out of the oven. The melting chips, the crumbly/chewy, brown-sugary cookie… Well, you can just imagine. As I’m sure you’re doing, right now.

Make the dough for Chocolate Chip Cookies, and scoop it onto a parchment-lined baking sheet, one that’ll fit in your freezer.

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Freeze till the scooped cookies are frozen solid. See the ice crystals? This will take an hour, maybe. No need to cover with plastic wrap.

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Parchment makes the next part of the process easy. Just lift the parchment…

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And use it to funnel frozen cookies into a large plastic bag.

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Press as much air out of the bag as possible. Label, and return to the freezer.

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When guests arrive, preheat your oven to 375°F. Take the cookies out of the freezer, put them on a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet, and bake as the recipe directs: 10 to 11 minutes.

How come they don’t have to bake longer, like the scones did?

Because I like to chill chocolate chip cookie dough before baking; I think chilling gives the resulting cookies a richer, more caramelized flavor. The frozen, scooped cookies are small enough that they quickly go from frozen to simply chilled, once they hit the oven’s heat.

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Q: What’s the difference between cookies baked from chilled dough (left), and frozen (right)?

A: None.

I’m telling you, scooped chocolate chip cookie dough in the freezer is money in the bank for those moments when you HAVE to have warm cookies.

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And now, for your viewing pleasure: Flaky Cheese Twists.

We’ll take them from the freezer…

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…to the pan…

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…to the oven…

(Whoops, excuse the rather slipshod look of these particular twists – I was in a hurry!)

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…to the appetizer plate, in just about 20 minutes.

How easy is that?

Easy, when you’ve made them ahead. Here’s how:

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The first thing we’ll do is make Fast and Easy Puff Pastry.

Did I mention money in the bank? Think flaky turnovers. Think of everything you do with supermarket freezer-case puff pastry sheets, only homemade – no partially hydrogenated vegetable shortening, no mono- and diglycerides. EVER so much tastier.

Start by cutting 1 cup (8 ounces) butter into little cubes. Cut each stick twice lengthwise. Turn 90°, and make two more lengthwise cuts. Now slice crosswise into pats; each pat will consist of 9 little cubes.

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The cubes are all stuck together here, but they’ll separate once you start mixing them with the other ingredients.

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Whisk together 1 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon baking powder. If you’re using salted butter, reduce the amount of salt to 1/4 teaspoon.

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Add the butter.

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Use your fingers to mix it with the flour.

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Keep mixing and squeezing/flattening the butter…

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…till it looks like this – VERY unevenly crumbly, with big flattened chunks of butter.

You can also do this whole process in your stand mixer.

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Mix in 1/2 cup sour cream.

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The dough won’t be totally cohesive; see that dry, floury residue in the bottom of the bowl?

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Knead the dough with your hands, picking up the dry stuff as you go.

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Flour a clean work surface. A silicone mat makes cleanup easy.

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Put the rough dough on your work surface…

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…and shape it into a rough oval.

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Roll it into an 8” x 10” rectangle. Trust me when I tell you it doesn’t need to be EXACTLY 8” x 10”; this is an approximation.

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Fold the dough like a letter. One short side goes into the middle…

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…then the second short side goes into the middle, and laps over the first.

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Like this.

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Turn the dough 90°…

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…and roll it into an 8” x 10” rectangle again.

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Fold it like a letter again.

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Wrap tightly in a double layer of plastic. Date it – and label it too, if you’re liable to forget what that frozen wad of dough is.

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I’m telling you – money in the bank!

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Because just look what that dough can aspire to… Flaky Cheese Twists.

Did I mention these twists are absolutely irresistible?

OK, detour. You don’t have to freeze your pastry dough before making these twists. In fact, if you know the dough’s destination will eventually be cheese twists, simply chill the fresh dough for 30 minutes; then proceed with the following recipe.

If you’re working with frozen dough, however, take it out of the freezer, and put it in the refrigerator overnight (still in its plastic wrap) to thaw. Then proceed as follows.

Ready a baking sheet by lining with parchment, if you have it; otherwise, just get out a baking sheet, no need to grease it.

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Next, select your cheese. Since you don’t use a whole lot of it, considering how many twists this makes, you want something assertive. Like Asiago. Or Parmesan. NOT mozzarella or Muenster! Think SHARP and HARD.

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Combine 3 ounces of Parmesan (or the hard, sharp cheese of your choice) with 1 teaspoon paprika in a food processor. The paprika is simply for color; if you think you won’t like it, leave it out.

If you don’t have a food processor, finely grate enough cheese to measure 3/4 cup, then mix with paprika.

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A food processor certainly makes short work of grating cheese.

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Whisk together 1 large egg, and 1 tablespoon cold water. This is the glaze that’ll both hold your twists together, and help give them their golden color as they bake.

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Place the thawed (but still cold) pastry on a well-floured work surface.

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Roll it into a 12” x 24” rectangle, about 1/8” thick. As you can see, I’m not stressing about straight edges here.

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Brush the dough with the glaze. You won’t use all of it; that’s OK, you’re going to use it again later.

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Sprinkle half the dough with the cheese.

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Then fold the bare half over the cheese half, making a 12” (more or less) square. Roll the square gently, to press the dough together.

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Cut it in half.

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Pizza wheels have always given me the heebie-jeebies, much like mandolines do. But not this one. I LOVE my acrylic pizza cutter. It cuts everything from crusty pizza to soft dough. But it doesn’t cut ME. With a good grip on its blade here, I’m feeling no pain.

It’s also safe on my silicone rolling mat. Unless I act like a fool and bear down just as hard as I can, in which case the cutter WILL slice into silicone. So caveat emptor: you can use an acrylic pizza cutter on a silicone mat, but TAKE IT EASY.

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Cut the two halves of dough into 1/2” strips (for thin twists), or 3/4” strips (for thicker, wider twists).

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Pick up a dough strip and twist each end in opposite directions until the dough is a spiraled cylinder. Place it on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough strips, leaving about 3/4″ between them.

Yes, some of the cheese is bound to sift out; don’t worry about it, you’re doing it right.

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Put the twists on the prepared baking sheet. Remember that leftover egg-water glaze? Use it.

OK, now you have two choices. You can bake the twists immediately – which is your goal, if you’re using frozen-then-thawed dough.

Or you can tent the pan of shaped twists with plastic wrap, put it in the freezer, and freeze till hard, about 1 hour. Take the twists off the baking sheet, and bag them airtight. Freeze till you’re ready to bake.

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Back to that glass of wine with your girlfriend. Wouldn’t Flaky Cheese Twists go just right with that Pinot Grigio?

Preheat the oven to 400°F.

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Bake freshly made twists for 12 to 15 minutes, until they’re golden brown.

Bake frozen twists for 17 to 22 minutes, till they attain the same golden state.

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Remove from the oven. Heave a blissful sigh. Enjoy warm.

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Did I mention flaky? As they say in Maine, these are SOME good!

So, we come to the end of our “How to get ahead of  the holiday curve” saga. And I can hear your question – yes, all the way from Eureka, California…

“How far ahead can I freeze this stuff?”

And the answer is – I’m not sure. Freezers vary a LOT in how cold they get. A self-defrosting freezer, since it continuously raises and then lowers its temperature, doesn’t keep frozen food as well as an old-fashioned freezer, one you have to defrost with buckets of hot water.

My rule of thumb is, the shorter the amount of time in the freezer, the better. That said, I believe everything I’ve made here today would be fine to freeze for up to about 6 to 8 weeks.

Longer than that, you’re on your own.

But with just 33 days till New Year’s Eve, you should be golden.

Just like your sticky buns, scones, cookies, and cheese twists.

Happy holidays, one and all!

Want to read more about how to prepare and freeze just-in-time holiday treats?
•Read about cinnamon buns.
•Read about fruit pie.
•Read about rollout cookies.

PJ Hamel
About

PJ Hamel was born in Wisconsin, grew up in New England, and graduated from Brown University. She was a journalist in Massachusetts and Maine before joining the King Arthur Flour Company in 1990, where she's been ever since. Author or co-author of three King Arthur ...

comments

  1. Mandy

    Thank you for this helpful post! I make your recipe for soft dinner rolls and cinnamon rolls all the time, and I often wonder if I can freeze them, but I’ve never been brave enough to experiment. Now I know!

    Absolutely, Mandy – even faster, you can parbake them – bake till they’re set, but not golden, about 2/3 of the directed time. Then cool, freeze, and when you’re ready to serve, bake about 10-15 minutes or so. Oven fresh! PJH

    Reply
  2. Debra

    Thanks for the info!! I want to be able to take fresh cookies to the neighbors, but I won’t have time to make 3 or 4 batches of cookies all in one day. But, I can bake them from frozen!

    Reply
  3. Kristi Talton

    I love these blogs! They are soo helpful. Thank You and keep up the great work! I will have great baking success this year because of King Arthur flour and your products.

    Thank You!!
    :)

    Reply
  4. Susan Tarman

    Frozen cookies! A brilliant idea – one our church has used for a while. Our church has held a “Charles Dickens” christmas festival every winter for the past few years and has always served fresh hot cookies! We (myself and 2 other gals) have baked over 5,000 cookies during the weekend festival. The only way we could serve fresh hot cookies was to bake them during the festival, and we did that using frozen cookie dough. The cookie dough was made and frozen weeks prior to the festival by the folks in our church. Our main goal was to reach out in the community to show God’s love; and serving hot chocolate and fresh warm cookies was a sweet way to do just that! Love the idea and the cookies!!

    Kind regards this Christmas season!

    Reply
  5. Karen

    Are there any easy to apply guidelines about which cookie doughs can be successfully frozen… and which cannot? Sugar cookie dough for cut-out cookies, for instance. Make and freeze the dough? Cut out and freeze the cut-outs? Gingerbread cookies? etc etc?

    Any guidelines, wisdom and warnings would be appreciated.

    Karen, since you never eat cutouts warm from the oven anyway, your best bet is simply to bake and freeze, rightly wrapped – sugar, or ginger. Then thaw at room temperature, uncovered. Add icing, etc. once they’re thawed. Other than that, I wouldn’t freeze raw cookie batter that’s designed to be poured (e.g., tuiles, pizzelle); I’m not sure it would work, though it might. I think all drop cookies would do well dropped, then frozen. Hope this helps – PJH

    Reply
  6. gloria wheeler

    I have a question, how long can you freeze chocolate chip cookie dough. I have done it for years but have felt the need to bake within 2 weeks. Can I freeze it now for Christmas time? a month?

    Gloria, I’ve frozen dough for a long time, I know… but never tracked exactly. You could absolutely freeze now for Christmas, though. PJH

    Reply
  7. Tracey

    Thanks so much for this wonderful post! I always get confused about which items freeze well so this information is terrific, especially at this time of year!

    Reply
  8. Trisha from NJ

    Thanks for these tips, PJ! Would freezing the scooped cookie dough work as well for drop cookies that have oats, raisins and orange zest in addition to chocolate chips? I hope so! Happy cookie season!

    Absolutely, Trisha – freeze away, I think just about anything we can think of to add to drop cookies would work… And that combo sounds scrumptious! PJH

    Reply
  9. MollyCookie

    These are really helpful ideas, especially for the cookies. I never thought about freezing before baking, but we go through chocolate chip cookies a lot around here. Wonderful and helpful post! I love it.

    Reply
  10. Kat

    PJ-
    Thank you so much! I usually put together 15 super-duper large trays of baked goods and pasta every year. Needless to say, I go absolutely crazy for the week before Christmas. If I start now, I can take it much easier and get some sleep that last week!

    Reply
  11. Nancy

    I make cinnamon rolls and immediately after the final shaping (and before the final proofing) place in a single layer on a sheetpan and freeze completely. I then place them in a ziploc for storage. The night before I want to bake them, I pull them out of the freezer, arrange in whatever baking pan I want and leave out overnight. When I get up in the morning, they are perfectly proofed and ready to bake. Is there a reason you proof them before freezing?

    Thanks for the post and all the great baking advice!

    No reason, Nancy – it’s what works for me. Your method sounds even better, I’ll have to try it sometime – thanks for sharing- PJH

    Reply
  12. Lisa

    Just finished nibbling on amazingly delicious oatmeal raisin cookies that we made from frozen dough–they were better than the cookies we had made from the dough when it was fresh! On to sticky buns for Christmas morning.

    Reply
  13. Mary

    The only other thing to do to those cookies is a sprinkle of sea salt before baking. Add a scoop of ice cream and a little dessert sauce and and use the warm cookies for any easy treat!

    Oh, Mary… you are SO right about the salt. And I love your idea of adding ice cream and sauce to warm cookies! How about baking them in mini muffin tins, or in a standard muffin tin, filled halfway? Little round chewy treats with ice cream and sauce… here we go again! Thanks for sharing, Mary – PJH

    Reply
  14. Jenn

    Where are the cinnamon rolls? I see sticky buns, but the email I got mentioned cinnamon rolls.

    Sorry, Jenn – I tend to use that term interchangeably, as they’re basically the same process, only sticky buns have topping on the bottom, and cinnamon rolls have glaze on the top. Here’s our favorite Cinnamon Roll recipe, if you’re looking for a good one – PJH

    Reply
  15. Katie

    This is a great post! I have a question: will this only work for sticky buns or could I fill the dough with any filling – like almond or apricot, etc.

    Katie, anything would be fine. Sticky buns are just a jumping off place – try this method with all kinds of yeasted treats. Good luck – PJH

    Reply
  16. Jackie

    I quit making and giving baked cookies to everyone years ago. I have five recipes, chocolate chip, oatmeal/cranberry, snicker doodles, peanut blossom and Mexican wedding cake cookies that I make dough and freeze into balls every year for Christmas for . I make all of the dough in one or two evenings after work for around eight people. The cookies are ready to bake (the peanut blossom cookies have the Hershey kisses included) when ever the recipient chooses. My Mom and Mother-in-law no longer do much cooking and bake a couple of cookies at a time in their toaster ovens. I keep my stash of cookie dough in a chest freezer and what ever is left around Easter gets baked and included with the other deserts.
    I’m adding the “salty-sweet butter pecan cookies” this year.

    Reply
  17. Donna

    I am guessing that it is possible to also freeze various kinds of scones as well. Is that correct?

    Absolutely, Donna. I often freeze for 30 minutes prior to baking anyway – seems to make them rise taller, as the fat is more solid and holds the structure longer before melting. PJH

    Reply
  18. Virginia

    This is an absolutely brilliant post. The kids clamor for cookies, but only eat one or two at a time, leaving me to be tempted by the rest. I can’t wait to try all these recipes.

    Reply
  19. Joan Bradbury

    I know what I’m going to do tomorrow — mix and freeze. Thank you, thank you! You have made me a champion.

    Joan, you’ve made yourself a champion – but we’re happy to be in your corner! PJH

    Reply
  20. Bonnie

    I’m just recovering from Thanksgiving and now I’m excited about freezing sweets for Christmas ahead of time – on my own time – without stress! Thanks for the step-by-step instructions & photos. Besides drop cookies & scones, would freezing yeast bread doughs or pizza dough work the same way? At what point after removing from the freezer would the process continue? Am I asking too much? I’m so excited!! Thanks again!

    Never too many questions, Bonnie – that’s absolutely what we’re here for. For yeast bread dough and pizza dough, it’s probably best to just freeze the dough in a ball, after its first rise. Gently deflate, and wrap well. Thaw in the fridge overnight, then shape, rise, and bake the next day. PJH

    Reply
    1. Beverly

      Just a quick comment to the pizza dough freeze…I make a few batches of pizza dough, don’t bother to let it proof. I make one batch, which is actually enough for 2 pizzas, because we like thin crust pizza at our house, after mixing, simply cut the ball of dough in half, wrap both balls separate , and freeze until ready to make pizza…remove from freezer, I grease a large glass measuring bowl with Pam Spray, uncover 1 pizza dough, drop it into my greased bowl, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, place the bowl containing the dough into my unheated oven with the oven light on, let rise for about 4 hours. It will be risen, and ready to shape into a pizza crust. I have friends who stop by on occasion, and they wonder why my oven light is on, I open the door to show them I am bringing my pizza dough to room temperature from my freezer. They always say ” Wow, I would never have thought to use my oven light to add just the right amount of warmth, to bring something yeasty to rise.” Works for me every time!!! I hope this helps….<3 HAPPY BAKING!

  21. Chris

    I just love all your recipes. I have been making chocolate chip cookies and freezing the dough for years. I place them in empty plastic ice cream containers and lay cellophane over the top and cover with the lid. When I need some cookies I always find that one of the kids has been in the frozen dough. I didn’t know for a long time that they were taking the cookies out frozen and eating them. Who doesn’t like eating cookie dough and they seem to enjoy them frozen too.

    Reply
  22. Sophia from So. Cal

    Thank you for these great tips! I love this website and all of your helpful hints. Can’t wait to get started baking…

    Reply
  23. Billie

    WOW! I can hardly keep from rushing to the kitchen to begin baking and freezing! I especially appreciate the freezing information for the breads (I’ve already been freezing my cookies that way).

    THANKS for all the recipes and the good tips you give us, as well as Thanks to all the bloggers who share their tips and experiences as well! What a wonderful site for all of us who like to bake!

    My mother used to have ‘sticky buns’ ready many evenings when I arrived home from school, so I have a special weakness for them. We ‘separated’ our own milk and Mom poured the cream(or spooned, when it was really thick)over the risen rolls just before popping them into the oven — OOOOOOOOh, were they good! This makes the ‘sticky’ part ‘not sticky,’ but soft and creamy — and they don’t dry out so quickly!

    Now THAT is really over the top, Billie – I’m going to try pouring cream over my sticky buns next time I make them! Thanks – PJH

    Reply
  24. Dani

    I’ve been freezing cookie doughs for years. I’ll often make a full batch then divide into thirds and freeze two. I’m really lazy, though. I pat the dough out into a square or rectangle, then score with the back of a knife {just like the tollhouse refrigerator cookie dough that you buy at the store.} They look the same once they’re baked, and it’s easier to find a little space in the freezer with the dough flat.

    Reply
  25. Rae

    I love your idea about freezing and thawing when needed. I do this with cranberry-orange scones all the time, and after reading your recipe, I will try your savory scones (bacon and cheddar) too. As bed and breakfast owners, I need to serve breakfast to as many as 10 folks some mornings. It reduces the stress level of these times when I can pull out my frozen scones and bake. Then I can put my efforts into my main course. Thanks for your ideas. I also learn a good deal from those who post messages to your site.

    Thanks for connecting, Rae – I learn a lot from our readers, too! the sharing that goes on here is wonderful. PJH

    Reply
  26. Lanelle LaRue

    I did chocolate chip and oatmeal cookies like this for my two granddaughters who were roommates in college. To make them store longer I put them in one of the vacuum sealed bags after freezing them. They will keep a long time in those. Any of the recipes above can be done the same way. You can keep steaks, etc. for several years in one of these bags without getting freezer burn because you take all the air out of the bag. If you cook very much these machines are well worth the money. If you want to vacuum food with liquids in it, put them in a serving size container, freeze, then vacuum seal the bag. otherwise all the liquid will be drawn out when you vacuum the air out. But you can also seal a bag without taking the air out, but must freeze first.

    Thanks for the hints, Lanelle. I don’t have a vacuum sealer myself, but I have friends who swear by them… PJH

    Reply
  27. Greenedie

    Can I freeze a non yeast bread prior to baking such as an orange, cranberry nut bread? Thanks for your help

    I’ve tried it, and it doesn’t work as well. I think it’s something about liquid and ice crystals… Best to bake the loaf, then freeze, then rewarm in a 350°F oven, lightly wrapped in foil, for 10-15 minutes. PJH

    Reply
  28. barb evenson

    Just want to tell you, I made the pumpkin chocolate chip bread today, from the King Arthur Flour Bakers Companion and it is outstanding. I have made four recipes of yours so far and everyone was an outstanding winner! Keep up the outstanding work. I am a devoted fan.

    Thanks, Barb- PJH

    Reply
  29. Jill English

    How about freezing monkey bread? How would that work? Also, what about pizza dough?

    Monkey bread would be just like the sticky buns, Jill – freeze in the pan after their second rise. If you don’t want to lose your pan to the freezer, though, you’d want to just freeze the dough in a ball, and thaw/shape/rise/bake when the time comes. Same with pizza dough. – PJH

    Reply
  30. Kimberly D

    You can freeze fruit pies, we did it all the time at the Orchard I worked at, we just made the bottom shell and fill it with the fruit of choice, (apple, peaches) than take out night before to unthaw than make fresh top crust and bake normal time. And when I worked at a convent store, they had frozen cookie dough balls like your chocolate chips, and we would bake them frozen they spread out. And another place I worked at we had cookie dough by the buckets frozen and unthawed and scooped out and baked. Makes sense you can freeze sticky buns and other bake goods, you can buy many of them frozen in stores. Don’t you think you could freeze bread dough? You can buy frozen bread dough.

    Thanks, Kimberly, for the pie info. I know you’ve mentioned that here before. My grandmother always had a freezerful of fruit pies, all ready to pop into the oven. And yes, you can freeze yeast dough, for sure. As you say, it’s at the supermarket; but theirs is usually filled with chemicals, since it has to have a lonnnnnng shelf life in the freezer, or the supermarkets won’t take it. For homemade yeast dough, I wouldn’t freeze any longer than 2 months. PJH

    Reply
  31. Kelli

    What a fantastic and timely post! I knew about freezing cookies, but wondered about other treats – like cinnamon rolls that I always make for christmas brunch, or scones. So good to have a little guidance for freezing these now as well.
    I’m wondering since freezing works for scones would it be about the same for biscuits and muffins? Would you freeze muffins after baking, parbake them or is it possible to freeze muffin batter?

    I haven’t had good luck freezing liquid batters, Kelli. I find it much easier, for muffins, to simply bake them all the way, freeze, then reheat for about 5-8 minutes in a 350°F oven, tented with foil. Muffins are SO fast and easy anyway, it really doesn’t make sense to bother freezing them at any midway point. Biscuits, though, are just like scones – they freeze easily on the pan. In fact, I think it actually helps to freeze biscuits and scones – it solidifies their fat completely, and they bake up taller in the end. PJH

    Reply
  32. Susan

    Any suggestions for freezing challah to bake later? In the stores you can buy little braided challah that you take out of the freezer, let rise, then bake. Can you do that with homemade challah? At what point can you freeze it, if at all?

    Yes, Susan, absolutely. I’d braid it, let it rise about halfway, then freeze on the sheet, then bag. Thaw in the fridge overnight, then bake, letting it rise more if necessary prior to baking. PJH

    Reply
  33. Lish

    I have made several types of cookie dough already and frozen it. We have a new freezer with a quick freeze function that freezes the dough in just over 20 minutes, it is fabulous! I am going to have to try other holiday treats now too. I have been making a couple of batches of dough a week to freeze, while the kids are napping. I think next week, absolutely the scones and cheese twists so that I also have breakfast and snack choices readily available. For Thanksgiving I made the butter buns, and they were a HUGE hit, as was the cranberry cake made from the torte recipe. I used almond extract in the dough, and it was sublime. I also shared the Thanksgiving muffins, and my grandparents asked for another dozen. Today my kids asked to make cookies, so we made the sparkling cranberry gems, and they are wonderful. How would you go about freezing those?

    Lish, sounds like you’ve been baking up a storm! The Cranberry Gems would freeze nicely on the sheet, just like the chocolate chip cookies – no different. Just shape, freeze, bag. PJH

    Reply
  34. Jenn

    Thanks! I’m curious about the dry milk and mashed potato flakes in the recipe. Are they required or could they be omitted or could you make a substitution? They just seem unusual ingredients. Thanks again!

    The dry milk adds richness, and in the case of our Baker’s Special dry milk, helps the rolls rise. The potato flour/flakes add moistness and tenderness; they make a soft roll, one that keeps longer. You can leave both out, but you’ll have a much different roll. OR substitute potato water (water in which potatoes have been boiled) for the regular water; that would at least help with the softness. Hope this helps – PJH

    Reply
  35. Lisa

    I agree with everyone! This was a fantastic post and soooo timely!
    I would like to make some potato dill rolls – my test recipe makes up 10 rolls, but, I would need to at least double or triple that – With a yeasted roll, that uses a starter, liquid levain, and pre-ferment, can I freeze them after the second rise?(at that point they have been shaped into small boules). I would like to make them and bake them right away, but, with the dough being 3 oz for each roll, I can only hold 6 on a sheet, and only 2 sheets in my oven! Help!!!

    PS – LOVE your flours!!!

    Thanks, Lisa – we love our flours too! Yes, you can freeze your little boules after the second rise – just be careful handling them till they’re totally frozen. Thaw overnight in the fridge – or another reader has suggested thawing overnight at room temperature. That may be more risky, as the size of the rolls and warmth of your house may not be a good combination, but give it a try – it might be just perfect. PJH

    Reply
  36. Lynn

    Thanks for the long description of making flaky pastry. The thought of struggling with my own made me nervous of trying it (even though I bake all kinds of other things.) With your directions it seems so easy, and I really know what to expect. I’ll be making some cheese twists for sure–cinnamon twists would go over well in this house too.

    Cinnamon twists – YES. Lynn, now you’ve got me heading in a new direction. I’ve made elephant ears with this dough, but cinnamon twists would be a lot easier… Thanks! PJH

    Reply
  37. Patricia Kachold

    What a great idea. I’m going to start next week. Boy what a
    time saver this will be. Christmas cookies can be made starting now and oh how easy to just bake them up without all
    the mess and the washing and reusing the mixer and cookie
    sheets over and over. Love it, love it, love it.
    Merry Christmas!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I can taste those cookies now.

    Me, too, Patricia – Tell me where you live, I’ll be over on Dec. 23! PJH

    Reply
  38. Jen Kryzyanowski

    I just did this last weekend. I wasn’t sure how good baking and freezing cookies would be, so I made up all my dough ahead (11 different kinds) and froze them. So all I have to do now is bake and ice or roll in powdered sugar. I do have a question though, I have one kind that requires filling with jam and shaping like hamantashen. Should I freeze the dough in rounds or fill with jam, shape, then freeze? Anyway, I can’t wait to try the bun method with the almond buns. They were awesome!
    Thanks for the great post.

    Jen, I think the shaped cookies would be fine frozen with their filling – there’s enough sugar in the jam that it’s not going to become too brittle and sharp (which might tear the dough). PJH

    Reply
  39. Dee Ann

    Wow! As soon as I liberate some room in my freezer (a side by side, already full of meat, appetizers, a turkey, etc.) I’m gonna try this. I don’t have enough room right now to freeze anything on baking sheets, even the small ones. I am going to make the cinnamon rolls/sticky buns for Christmas and may have to indulge in the cheese twists as well.
    Great suggestions!

    Reply
  40. Marcia

    This is fantastic information. Can someone advise me on the best way to freeze pizza dough and yeast breads as well such as the classic whole wheat bread on this website? When is the best time to freeze these 2 things? After the first rise? And how is the best way to go about doing it, would you put it on a baking sheet first to freeze (like the cookie dough) or just bag it and put it into the freezer? also please advise on the proper way to thaw these doughs prior to baking…Thanks!

    In general, Marcia, yeast doughs freeze well by gathering them into a ball after their frst rise, wrapping, and freezing. Thaw overnight, still wrapped, in the fridge. OR thaw at room temperature, wrapped. Then shape, rise, bake. The rising will obviously take longer, since the dough is cold. You could also try doing just like the buns – letting the bread or pizza rise on/in the pan, then freezing. In pizza’s case, though, it takes up an awkward space in your freezer. And the bread takes up a bread pan, although you COULD let it rise in the pan, freeze, pry it out of the pan… sounds like an awful lot of handling, though. I think it’s better to simply freeze prior to its rise in the pan. PJH

    Reply
  41. Melissa Yeakley

    I love the information on making these ahead and freezing them! I am looking forward to trying this. We just had a bake sale at church and it would have been nice to be able to spread all the work out instead of doing it all in a marathon!

    Next bake sale you can try this, right, Melissa? Hope it went well – PJH

    Reply
  42. Christine

    I noticed that the Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe calls for shortening. I really prefer to use butter in my baking and not shortening. Can I substitute all butter in this recipe? What benefit does shortening offer, in general, over butter?

    Christine, you can use all butter; your cookies will spread more, and won’t be quite as crisp around the edges. And those are shortening’s advantages, controlling spread, and crispness. PJH

    Reply
  43. Trisha

    How about your Walnut Cookies, made in the mold? Any tips on making them ahead of time? Love all these freezing ideas!

    Sure, Trisha – make ahead and freeze the cookies. I think they’d be better filled just prior, rather than filled and frozen; but if you’re really pressed for time, try filling and freezing. If it doesn’t work – next time you’ll know. PJH

    Reply
  44. Sally

    Do the cheese twists reheat well if they’ve been baked before freezing?

    Sure, Sally. Just tent with aluminum foil and bake for about 5 minutes or so at 350°F, they should be fine. PJH

    Reply
  45. laura wilson

    About the post on yeast breads… I make my bread, let it have its first rise, then shape and freeze. The night before, I get it out, give it some room to get big, and let it have its second rising. It makes the whole house smell great. When I make rolls, it is the same. But it does work with bread.

    Reply
  46. karen

    Hi everyone! I hope everyone has recoverd from the great weekend. I am about to make butter cookies. I thought I would make the dough today and then freeze it. When I take the dough out should I let it come to full room temp. and then put in refrig. until I get ‘to them’ to cut out?
    I also want to ship them in time for the holiday. When do you suggest I ‘bake’ them and ship them so they remain fresh? To avoid damage it was suggested to place them in cupcake paper cups in the cookie tin. Any other
    suggestions are welcomed…

    This is the best web site….ever…. your company is the best!
    Thank you, karen

    Karen, leave the dough in the fridge till you’re ready to roll; no need to let it come to room temperature. Just make sure it’s fully thawed and “pliable” before you roll. For shipping, take a look at our Shipping Cookies tips – just scroll down (it’s alphabetical) till you get to “shipping.” If they’re small enough, Pringles cans are really helpful ways to pack and ship; stuff crumpled waxed paper or a bit of bubble wrap in each end of the can, cookies in the middle. – PJH

    Reply
  47. Kate

    PJ, do you have any idea how much I love you? Your blogs are fantastic and your recipes have elevated me to rock-God status among the recipients of my baking. I’m hitting the kitchen right now to whip up some cinnamon twists. In this season of giving thanks, please know that you are a huge blessing to so many.

    Awwwww, Kate – thanks so much. This is what I love doing the most, taking people by the hand and saying, “Look, you can do this. We can do this together. Here’s how.” I hope you’ll pass your new-found skills along to many, many more people! Thanks again – PJH

    Reply
  48. Jennifer

    I have a question about cooking frozen biscuits made with the recipe for the biscuits to top chicken pot pie. They bake at 475 for 5 min, then cut the oven off and let cook for another 5 – 10 min. So, is there a good temp/time combo I can use to cook these biscuits while still frozen? I have tried reducing the temp and extending the time, but they do not have all the layers of freshly made biscuits unless I let them thaw completely first. Any ideas?
    Thank you for your help and ideas!

    Jennifer, you’ve hit on the best solution – let them thaw first. Is there a reason you can’t do that? They’d thaw quickly at room temperature – probably within an hour. Other than that, I’d bake the whole shebang at 350°F for maybe 25 minutes, depending on the size of the biscuits – see if that works. And let us know, OK? Good luck – PJH

    Reply
  49. Debbie

    I like to make these treats and rolls but also things like sourdough bread, can it be frozen too & baked? If so at what point do you freeze?

    Debbie, I think parbaking is the best way to go with shaped loaves like baguettes or boules, typical sourdough shapes. Bake till the bread is set, but not brown. Cool, wrap, freeze. Thaw loaf at room temperature (loosely wrapped), then finish baking – till bread is golden brown. PJH

    Reply
  50. linda

    PJ!!! i LOVE all your tips! they are just great & your replies to this post are of such value…thank you, thank you!!!
    hope to make a trip to kaf & meet you & all your
    wonderful colleagues of this blog!! :)

    Come on up, Linda – ask the store ladies where I am (down the road about 1 1/2 miles). We’re always happy to stop and say Hi – PJH

    Reply
  51. Dessie Carpenter

    I love your Cookie Companion Cookbook. My husband’s favorite cookie is Vanilla Dreams made with baker’s ammonia. I have always baked, then frozen the cookies. I never thought of freezing the dough. Thanks for the information.

    I love those Vanilla Dreams, too – so crisp/crunchy! Thanks for reminding me, Dessie – PJH

    Reply
  52. Judy

    Made the chocolate chunk pecan pie. Fantastic beyond words. Would like to make several tartlets instead of one pie. Would that work? How would I alter temperature and baking time. Thank you for all your amazing information.

    Judy, depends on the size of the tartlets; I’d bake them at 350°F and start checking at 20 minutes or so. Maybe a total of 30 minutes? Give it a try, let us know what ha[[ens- PJH

    Reply
  53. Christina

    I’ve had a yin to make cinnamon rolls/sticky buns but can’t manage to get up in time to make it happen in time for breakfast (or lunch…maybe dinner). This is 100% the solution for our family.

    The cookies… heh. I’ve been wanting to try something like that for ages. I can taste the warm chocolate chip cookies already. :) I have a feeling the ability to have fresh baked cookies on demand will make us a pretty popular house on the block once my kids hit school age.

    Can’t wait to try all of these ideas! Very timely indeed! PJ, you rock!

    Rock on, Christina – we’re ALL inspirations to one another. Love it. PJH

    Reply
  54. liz

    Hi everyone, I am looking to freeze a cake frosted with real buttercream frosting for one week. Any suggestions? Thanks Just wrap and freeze. This will freeze very nicely. Joan D@ bakershotline

    Liz, Sue Gray, our test kitchen director, says “No problem–except, thaw in refrigerator for the first hour or so if the house is humid to prevent any condensation.” PJH

    Reply
  55. AJ

    On freezing pizza dough: My sister-in-law lined her pizza pans with
    plastic wrap, sprayed them with a bit of oil, laid and flattened the dough,
    froze it, then popped the dough off the pans and wrapped and froze the
    dough. When her family wanted fresh pizza they simply thawed the dough, layered on toppings and baked. Wish she was still around…her
    pizzas were great!

    AJ, your pizzas can be great, too (if they’re not already) – that method sounds like it would work just fine with any of our pizza dough recipes – give it a try. PJH

    Reply
  56. Shon

    These recipes will come in so handy for the holidays! Thanks, and maybe you could think about a cookbook specifically dedicated to this very concept. I have all your other books, but this would standout as an absolute lifesaver! Can’t wait to make them all, but I’ll start with the sticky buns! Yum!

    Reply
  57. Tammie H D

    I like the idea of freezing the cookie dough with the serving size. Normally, I will baked the my cookies and then freeze them baked.

    I like to send my family baked good via mail, but having a problem trying to figure out how to do the cinnamon/stickey buns.

    Can you shed any ideas on how to make that happen.

    That’s a tough one, Tammie. I’d suggest the USPS Priority box – $9.75 no matter now much it weighs. Pack some cookies in the bottom, sticky buns on top. They’ll get there in a couple of days. PJH

    Reply
  58. Laurel

    This is one of the very best, informative tutorials I’ve ever read! Thanks so much! You’ve relieved me from all that last-minute rushing around in the kitched at holiday time when I should be relaxing and enjoying the season. FABULOUS!

    Reply
  59. Pamela M

    Loved the photos! These are great choices for winter entertaining, simple, and baking-challenged people like me love the abundance of details so we can’t go wrong. Looking forward to making the cookies and the scones.

    Reply
  60. Kate from Pittsburgh

    TY for the great freezing ideas. I may actually have a sane holiday season. Love the sharing on this site; YOU ROCK!
    kkb

    Reply
  61. Debbie Herry

    Didn’t read all the comments … but… I often make cookies of different kinds and freeze them for us, since there are only 2 of us I bring out about 9 cookies of different kinds and have fresh cookies. At Christmas time I make several kinds of cookies and I give FROZEN cookies as gifts so that whomever I give them to can enjoy fresh cookies AFTER the holidays. What a wonderful idea for gift giving! Joan D@bakershotline

    Reply
  62. Debbie

    After reading all the blogs I have a question about this:
    “Bake till the bread is set, but not brown. Cool, wrap, freeze.”
    Isn’t the dough in the middle of the loaf unbaked (raw)? How long is “set”about 2/3 baking time?

    Probably about 2/3, Debbie, yeah. Set is when you feel it and it doesn’t feel like it’ll collapse when you take it out of the oven. It’s pretty hard – just not brown. PJH

    Reply
  63. Susan

    I get it! I get it! I finally bought some King Arthur Bread Flour at Kroger and used it for pizza dough on Wednesday and rolls on Thursday. It was great! I see, feel, and taste the difference! Thanks for such a quality product.

    Thank YOU, Susan, from the 167 employee-owners here at King Arthur Flour. We appreciate you using our flour – and your enthusiasm! PJH

    Reply
  64. Dana

    WOW! Thanks for all the tips here. Can’t wait to try freezing my cinnamon rolls before baking…PURE GENIUS! Question: Can cake batter be frozen before baking? Like pour it into cupcake/muffin tins and then freeze? And if so, how much extra time would it take to bake? Love the posts here and always come away learning something new.

    Dana, I tried freezing brownie batter, then baking it frozen. Didn’t work – the outside got hard before the inside was done. You might try it with cake batter, then letting it thaw first, but not sure how much time that would really save… PJH

    Reply
  65. Diane

    Do you stay up all night just to respond to the customer comments and questions? I noticed that you received them all night long, and there were responses posted. This is true dedication! ( I do realize that you have more than one person responding, but it sure looks great!)
    Thanks for all you do for us.

    Diane, here’s what happened – there was such a huge response to the email and this blog yesterday, it kind of broke one of our servers. So the comments couldn’t get answered till the traffic died down. I get up early anyway – so I started moderating/posting all the comments from yesterday and last night at 5:15 this morning. And I’ve gradually caught them up all day. So now we’re current. It’s fun, anyway – what’s not to like, people asking questions about baking and waxing enthusiastic over what they’ve baked or are gong to bake… I have the best job in the world, and “Life is good!!!” PJH

    Reply
  66. Laree

    When you mention brushing cream on the sticky buns before baking, do you mean heavy whipping cream, half and half, or butter? Sorry, new to baking and I really don’t know the difference.

    Heavy, whipping, or half and half would probably all be good, Laree. I’ve ever tried it – but cream is ALWAYS a plus! BTW, welcome to the wonderful world of flour… PJH

    Reply
  67. linda

    thank you dessie for the link to vanilla dream cookies…this will be part of my holiday baking &…
    pjh…you are so creative w/cusinart pusher imprint…kind of dreamy!! thanks…rock on sister! :)

    Hit on that by accident, Linda – but it works just fine. I find MUCH of life is an “accident,” don’t you? You’re going along your merry way, and BOOM – hmmm… Luckily, oftentimes the outcome is GOOD, right? You go, sister- PJH

    Reply
  68. Heather

    This is fantastic…if only my freezer was big enough to store all these frozen goodies! The first thing I’m going to do when we finally move from our tiny city condo into a larger house will be to get a chest freezer. The second, mix up a batch or two of everything in this post!

    Reply
  69. sammi

    Someone inquired re freezing cut-out cookies. I’ve had success doing this for a good 40 years (I know because my children? are now in their 40′s!) – we had a rather small kitchen … and it was almost impossible for them to have fun icing, sugaring and decorating cookies if I was trying to roll out, cut etc. at the same time.

    I roll out and cut the dough. I cover baking trays or large metal trays with heavy duty foil (now there is parchment paper! that works too). I put the cut out cookies on the paper; cover with another layer of foil; and continue in that way. I’ve often had 8 to 12 layers of cut outs on one tray. Then I cover VERY securely with heavy duty foil or wrap in freezer paper. And place in my freezer.

    I usually try to do these just before or right after Thanksgiving . Then when we are ready to decorate … I just pull them out (after I’ve prepared the frosting and brought out al the colored sugars and other toppings) and we just bake and decorate.

    Of course, by now … these tots are grown and live in far-off states .. but we do find some young ones who like to come over and ‘help’ and go home with a plate of THEIR goodies .. and enough left for us to enjoy and give.

    Granted, now I probably DO have a kitchen large enough and with lots more counter space… but I’m so used to doing it this way!

    I do like to freeze the drop cookies … and often freeze bread, rolls, etc. — usually partially baked (brown ‘n serve!) for the breads/rolls and unbaked for the cookies. Wonderful … as they taste so much fresher this way.

    We are big King Arthur Flour users – I particularly love your white whole wheat but also buy your ap and bread and, occasionally, a few others.

    Thanks for sharing here, Sammi – I hope you have lots of young visitors taking advantage of your smart cookie prep this year! And thanks for using our flours – the 167 employee-owners here appreciate your loyalty. PJH

    Reply
  70. wendyb964

    Thank you so much for the tips! I’ve frozen cookie dough for years as much to clean up the kitchen mess then bake en masse for the holidays or bit by bit for the family. You and all the others are so confident: I have not tried yeast bread for 20+ yr–one bad experience. After reading KAF info I’ll be brave this holiday season. Sticky buns/cinnamon rolls would get the (grown/visiting) kids up pdq. You folks are an inspiration!!!!

    Glad we’ve inspired you to give frozen yeast dough another try, Wendy – good luck! PJH

    Reply
  71. janet

    thanks so much for the tips on baking and freezing. what a great way to entertain without all of the last minute work! i have always enjoyed the king arthur catalogue, but this blog is new for me…and it is terrific! i’m hooked!

    Welcome, Janet… Have fun here – seems we all do! PJH

    Reply
  72. Sarah

    I just made cookies today and froze half the batch. I’m so excited to know I have fresh cookies in the freezer! Mine didn’t get ice crystals on them though. Is this a problem? I can’t wait to get my paper bakers to make sticky buns! Thanks for the great post.

    Sarah, ice crystals are actually NOT a good thing, but I was using them to make a visual point – “See the ice crystals? These are frozen.” No ice crystals is just fine. PJH

    Reply
  73. Olga Smith

    Great ideas and recipes. Would like to freeze my sweet bread dough in shaped loaves for later baking. Possible? I make povitica (nut filled Croatian bread), too, 12 loaves at a time. If I could freeze and bake later, that would really be a hellp. I mail it to family from St. Louis, to Colorado, Ohio and North Carolina and all say that it arrives in good shape. OSS

    Don’t see why it wouldn’t work, Olga. Povitica has yeast, but it’s not a high-riser, right? More a loaf of filling barely held together with dough? I’d think you’d definitely want to keep it in its pan once frozen, but give it a try – be adventurous! PJH

    Reply
  74. TByrd

    HI! just an aside….I live in India and am one of the few here to have a freezer, mixer, AND a ‘western’ style oven. As the weather is kind of warm and my oven is small so I often freeze cookie dough. One handy tip I have found is to roll the fresh cookie dough into ‘logs’, wrap the ‘logs’ in plastic wrap, and use the CARDBOARD TUBES FROM PAPER TOWELS to store the cookie dough ‘logs’ in the freezer. The cardboard tubes are easy to store in my crowded freezer. The tubes also keep the ‘log’ shape making it easy to slice’n'bake the cookie dough. Just allow the dough to thaw a bit longer and you can roll out ‘cut out’ cookies if desired. I freeze chocolate chip, sugar, gingersnap/bread, pfeffernusse, and cardamom cookie dough like this successfully. Namaste!

    Great tip, T – are your neighbors the recipients of this cookie largesse? One of my fellow test kitchen bakers does this – she “hinges” the tubes in half lengthwise to make them easy to pack with dough, then rubber-bands them back up. Another reader packs cookie dough in empty plastic wrap or aluminum foil cartons – says the resulting square cookies bake up just fine. Bigger cookies could be done in Pringles cans, I’d imagine. Hey, next year we can all exchange ingenious cookie dough storage ideas! Thanks for connecting – I love that the Web brings physically distant worlds so much closer together. Namaste – PJH

    Reply
  75. Beth

    Hi PJ, tried to post last night, but dial-up was so slow, I’m pretty sure my comments never made it, so trying again: I think you said scones and biscuits benefit from freezing, because they will rise higher, but (and here’s the part I’m not sure about), you advised again freezing muffins. My husband coincidentally just asked me the other day why my muffins don’t rise as high as the ones he sees in stores. So what am I doing wrong? I seem to vaguely remember in a previous blog you recommended letting the muffin batter sit for 30 minutes – is my memory correct, or has all this rain we’ve gotten lately clogged my brain? thanks, PJ.

    Beth, your commetn was posted and answered – but I guess it got so buried you couldn’t find it! Here it is again:

    Yes, I did suggest letting them rest for 30 minutes before baking, Beth – I kind of stumbled across that one by accident, when I’d forgotten to preheat our very slow ovens here in the test kitchen. For biscuits and scones, it’s solidifying those layers of fat by freezing that does the trick. For muffins, it’s the baking powder/soda getting a chance to really get going. Hey – how was your Thanksgiving/! Lots of pies? Say hi to my friend in the barn, OK? (Hope she’s still with you!) :) PJH

    Reply
  76. Claudia

    Hi,

    Thanks for the great idea about freezing cookie dough. Now I know how to get ahead for my 3000+ cookie baking marathon for Christmas (yep, 20 different kinds, all by myself, only with KAF flour). All I have to do is patiently wait for my King Arthur order to arrive… ;).

    Claudia, all I can say is… WOW. 3,000 cookies. You must have some very lucky friends. I wish you strength and endurance for this marathon! And thanks so much, on behalf of my fellow 167 employee-owners, for using our good flour! PJH

    Reply
  77. Teresa Wright

    I used to work on a cattle ranch in Wyoming, and the ranch wife used to make refrigerator cookie rolls, wrap them in waxed paper and then alumninum foil, and freeze them. When she needed cookies for us hands, she would slice off as many cookies as she needed and then bake them. Refrigerator cookie doughs are so handy and can be made in many flavors. I make a chocolate chip cherry dough that is great for Christmas or any time a fix is needed. The dough can also be packed in a small loaf pan, frozen and then wrapped. I just made 3-layer cookies this way — pistachio, cherry, and chocolate layers.

    Reply
  78. Sharon E. Russell

    I’ve been preparing and baking muffins this way for years. Once you make the batter line your muffin tins with the foil baking cups. You can use paper ones but if you have fresh fruit in them they don’t come out as easy. Once they’re frozen transfer them to a storage container. Use saran wrap in-between the layers to prevent sticking. When ready to cook take out of the freezer and pop in the muffin tin. They bake about 5 minutes longer than the recipe calls for.

    THANKS, Sharon – the voice of experience! PJH

    Reply
  79. Judy Martin

    I have a question after reading your suggestions for freezing cookie dough. Does the ice crystals melted during baking change the consistency of the cookie?

    Judy, if you wrap the cookies well you’ll get few, if any, ice crystals. If you do happen to have a few, they’ll melt by the time you get the cookies into the oven – no damage done. PJH

    Reply
  80. Diane Bartlett

    I’m single and when I make chocolate chip cookies and freeze them I use my food sealer. I package 4 or 5 in a row, seal, and freeze. I can then have fresh out of the oven cookies when I want and not have a plate full of cookies to tempt me.

    Reply
  81. Brenda

    Any reason you couldn’t line your monkey bread pan with nonstick foil and remove from the pan & wrap when frozen solid? That should work. Have fun with it! Mary @ KAF

    Reply
  82. Diane Hagopian

    Good Morning: First time on this site – some great info. The freezer is a life saver. I too have a vacumn sealer and cannot live without it. I have a huge freezer in my garage and when my children leave they help themselves to whatever, from cookies to meals. I do, however, vacumn seal soups, sauces, stews etc. I just make the bags a bit bigger and have no problem. To freeze stuffed tomatoes, peppers etc. I freeze on a tray, reserving the juices in the frig. I add some juices to the bag with the frozen veggies. To pack I place a jelly roll tray upside down in front of the sealer and place the bags on top, it raises the bags a bit higher and this way the juices do not run out. This works for cookies, bread, rolls, etc.- Been using KAF products for years and just discovered White Whole Wheat flour and made Armenian bread (lavash) – it was wonderful.
    Thanks for all the good information.

    Reply
  83. Kate

    Oh, yum! We have a big family (8 children) so I freeze anything I can. I’ve been doing the cookie balls for a long time because it is so lovely to be able to bake just a couple of homemade cookies at a moments notice. I’ll often have one of the children pop a dozen cookie balls in the oven while I am putting dinner on the table – then dessert is warm and ready when dinner is over!

    Another thing I love to do is to freeze muffin batter. I put foil muffin cups on cookie sheets and fill them as if I were going to bake them. Once they are frozen, I transfer them to freezer bags.

    To bake, I just put the desired number of muffins into a muffin tin and bake at 400 for 18-20 minutes. Since it takes about 20 minutes to boil eggs, I will often bring water to a boil while the oven preheats. I can put eggs in the water and muffins in the oven for a frugal, mess-free hot breakfast!

    Reply
  84. NoC_CakeLady

    Can I freeze sugar cookies dough cut out in shapes for about a week then bake them. Then dercorate them when cooled? Yes, that should work. I would bake them frozen. Mary@KAF

    Reply
  85. Abby

    I LOVE this blog! I am looking forward to trying all of these ideas, but I have a question. I do a lot of my baking with whole grains, mostly from the amazing KAF Whole Grain Baking cookbook,and I am wondering if these same techniques will work as well with the whole grain recipes. Are there any adjustments I should make?

    Thanks so much! Yes, these techniques should work for whole grains also.

    Reply
  86. Harriet

    I made sugar cookies yesterday from frozen cut out shapes. They came out so good!! Everyone enjoyed then so much. I like the muffin idea and will make them this week. Thanks so much for all the hints.

    Reply
  87. Billie

    Ok, I’ve got a great breakfast time-saver for you. This is extra valuable for parents, especially ones whose kids are crazy about pancakes (like mine).
    We try our best to stay healthy/organic/etc., w/ mixed results. But then the other day in WHole Foods I saw it: Batter Blaster ORGANIC pancakes IN A CAN!!
    And no joke they are actually good.
    As good as scratch, or as good as any of the amazing things pictured above? Maybe not. But in my house if we can get something warm and healthy in their bellies before school it’s a big win!

    Reply
  88. Esther Mozo

    This is really great advice. I once went to a bread baking class and asked if I could freeze the dough before baking, and the teacher glared at me! Well, now I know she just didn’t know the answer. He he he. Thanks a lot for sharing a great time-saving tip.

    Reply
  89. Nicole

    We Love pie around here but hate frozen pie crusts from the supermarket. I have always thought about freezing my homemade crusts in the disposable aluminum pie pans, but have been scared that they won’t taste as good as fresh crust. However I think I will try Would there be any differences in the process if I am going to freeze them in the aluminium pans, can this even be done? Thanks so much for this post!!

    Nicole, I’d freeze in the throwaway aluminum pans, then once frozen, carefully stack the pans (with layers of plastic wrap between) to save freezer space. Put the whole shebang in a big plastic bag, and suck the air out with a drinking straw – instant vacuum seal! PJH

    Reply
  90. Sheryl

    I have been freezing cookie dough for a couple of years but do not shape it first as I am afraid if I add things like crushed peppermint candies, or crushed heath bars they will turn to mush in the freezer. So, I defrost the dough and then add the candies, shape and bake. Is this necessary or will the candies “hold up” when frozen. How about coconut, will it be OK? I love this post and think you guys are fantastic! Thanks for all the great hints

    Sheryl, I think those candies AND coconut would hold up just fine. What doesn’t hold up is anything really wet. Like, if you added fresh raspberries to something – they wouldn’t do particularly well. Or anything creamy, e.g., cream puff filling, custard pie, etc. Other than that – go for it! And thanks for your kind comments- PJH

    Reply
  91. Elizabeth

    What a fabulous idea and how obvious. (Smacking myself in the head!) There is only my husband and myself at home these days and while I love to bake, especially cookies, it is just not a good idea to have all those cookies around. So last night I made a batch of the chewy oatmeal raisin cookies, baked 4 and put the rest in the freezer. Tonight will be snickerdoodles, followed by peanut butter and the ranger cookies. I love the thought of just pulling out a few of what you want and having warm fresh cookies at a moments notice. Thanks!

    I know, Elizabeth – I’m the same way. Sometimes the obvious solution is sitting right there in the middle of the counter, and you keep looking right past it! I’m still working on the “one brownie at a time” thing. I poured batter into paper muffin cups, but I think I’d need to let them thaw before baking; baking them frozen produced raw centers and tough edges. Work in progress- feel free to experiment and report back! PJH

    Reply
  92. Nancy B

    I love the frozen chocolate-chip cookie balls idea! I do have one question. I know that much of the frozen dough will never make it to the oven….my daughter and friends will eat them straight from the freezer. So the egg in the dough concerns me a little. Could I substitute something like Egg-Beaters for the egg in the dough? Would that make a difference in taste and texture? Or is there not enough raw egg to worry about? Thanks so much. Maybe this year I will be able to make my cookie-exchange cookies in advance. YEA!

    Nancy, you could try egg substitute – I haven’t tried, so can’t tell you go ahead, it’ll be fine. But it seems it would work – maybe cookies will be a tiny bit less tender, and maybe spread a tiny bit less. Use 1/4 cup less 1 1/2 teaspoons to substitute for 1 large egg. Also, just a heads-up that raw eggs aren’t the “death sentence” people once thought they were – there’s actually very little chance of infection from salmonella these days, though to be extra-cautious, the government still advises we don’t eat raw eggs. Good luck – PJH

    Reply
  93. Lish

    My family and I have always frozen pies, either with raw crust or partially baked. It tastes just like freshly made crust, and so much better than what you buy in the store. In fact my mother, grandmother and I just made a dozen French meat pies today for the freezer. My babies had fun taste testing, and there was enough crust left for an apple pie made from the filling I canned this summer. As for brownies I have found that using the pan that bakes the brownies all cut up already and then freezing the baked brownies works best. I wrap them in plastic wrap and freeze. When I want a brownie I take it out, zap it in the microwave for 15 seconds and voila, warm brownie! I have been unable to find a good way to freeze brownie batter. Good luck!

    Thanks for sharing, Lish- good advice all around. PJH

    Reply
  94. Donna Gottschalk

    I have been freezing my cookies this way for years only because there is only me and my daughter. I make 10-12 cookies at a time and we have fresh baked cookies all the time. I can’t wait to try the cinnamon rolls. I love you guys too!

    Reply
  95. Betty

    I’m going to be serving 4 quiches at a brunch. Can they be baked ahead of time and frozen? I used to make the frozen cookie dough for my kids when they were in college. When they’d come home to visit, I always sent a cooler back with them with frozen casseroles, etc. and would include a bag of their favorite cookie dough.Quiches just don’t freeze well. You can bake them a couple of days ahead and keep them refrigerated, then just reheat. I think this would be your best bet. Mary @ KAF

    Reply
  96. Brenda Frank

    I have baked Christmas cookies (pinwheel cookies, shortbread logs, spritz cookies and cut-out sugar cookies) and frozen them after baking. To me, they seemed good as fresh when thawed. It this OK, or is it better to freeze raw cookie dough?

    Brenda, do whatever works for YOU. There are no better/worse methods; just what you like. Cheers! PJH

    Reply
  97. Regina

    Hi – I roll my ginger snaps in sugar before baking. Should I do this before I freeze them or once they are ready to be baked?,br/> I would do both! Mary @ KAF

    Reply
  98. Martha

    I have done the frozen chocolate chip cookie dough in the past because I too thought it would be a great idea. Unfortunately, I did not think they baked up the same as they do when they are not frozen. Because I use real butter they tend to be somewhat flat but once frozen they were pretty thick. The consistency just wasn’t the same. I started out by trying the same temperature and time but found I had to cook them longer. Any suggestions? I would love to try it again to be ahead on the Christmas baking. (Ahead for me, that is!)

    Martha, the first thought that springs to my mind is to flatten the dough balls before freezing; or thaw, then flatten, then bake. I’m thinking perhaps the milk solids in the butter are staying frozen longer than the oil, and preventing the cookies from spreading. If you flatten them, at least they’ll be partway there. Give it a try, let us know what happens – PJH

    Reply
  99. Edie P

    I make braided yeast bread with almonds, raisins and candied cherries to give to friends and family every Christmas. Freezing the dough is an exciting idea so that I won’t be frantically making dough the few days before Christmas.

    Make dough, rise, punch down, knead in nuts and fruit, braid, second rise, bake. Should I freeze the bread before or after the second rise?

    As always, thanks for all the advice and ideas you provide!

    Edie, I’d get it to the point where you’ve braided it, and it’s risen a bit – not a lot, just gotten a start. Freeze. When ready to bake, thaw in the fridge overnight, then give yourself enough time for it to have a good, long rise at room temperature before baking. Good luck – PJH

    Reply
  100. Adele from NJ

    I haven’t seen any posts about freezing shaped cookies (like butter cookies, gingerbread men…). Would I roll out, cut into shapes, freeze on the cookie sheet, then place in a freezer bag, or would I need to put them in a plastic container (to avoid breaking) and freeze? I do a lot of these type of cookies, and spend all day Christmas Eve baking away! This would save soooo much time! Also – for something like Molasses cookies, where you roll them in sugar before baking, would I just roll the frozen ball of dough in the sugar and then bake or would they need to thaw a bit? Thanks!

    Adele, shaped cookies are easily baked ahead of time, stacked, carefully wrapped, and frozen. Thaw at room temperature, uncovered, laid out on cookie sheets. Then decorate, if desired. Roll molasses (etc.) cookies in sugar, then freeze. Bake frozen, or thaw and bake. Good luck – PJH

    Reply
  101. Mary Ann Brenner

    I have a question about the fast and easy puff pastry. I was very excited about this recipe and put 3 batches together last week-end. However, I must have overworked the dough because when I baked it, it didn’t rise very much and was very “heavy.” What did I do wrong. I still have one batch in the freezer but am wondering if I should throw it away and start over. Any help you can give me would be very much appreciated. P.S. I didn’t use the dough for the Flaky Cheese Twists — I made Danish with mine, but didn’t think that would make the difference in the way the dough cooked up.
    You may have overworked it,but give us a call at the Baker’s Hotline and we’ll be happy to troubleshoot the recipe with you. Molly @ KAF

    Reply
  102. Cecilia

    Big brunch at my house this coming Sunday. I would like to make quiche, baked french toast and cinnamin rolls. Any tips on doing these today and freezing? And what about cheese cake , is it to early to make today if I keep it in the fridge.
    Horray! My son is graduating college! Have you see PJs blog on freezing? It is a true helper when we are all so very busy and need help and hints. Here is the link-http://www.kingarthurflour.com/blog/2009/11/28/freeze-time-savers-for-the-holidays/-Thanks PJ–Joan D@bakerhotline

    Reply
  103. Adrienne Szafranski

    I have been wondering about how to get fresh cinnamon rolls in the morning without waking up in the middle of the night to accomplish it. Thanks for the tips. What I REALLY want to know, though, is how I can have Pan au Chocolat in the morning? I use your brioche recipe, but the second rising takes forever, so it ends up being a late brunch kind of treat. How can I make it ahead so Christmas morning it just needs to go in the oven?

    Same way, Adrienne. Try letting it rise all shaped, then freezing, and carefully wrapping. thaw in the fridge overnight before using, and expect to bake it a bit longer the next morning. Good luck – PJH

    Reply
  104. Jinnie

    Thank you!!! I have done the drop cookie and slice and bake dough thing but this has opened a whole new world to me.

    We spent some time over the weekend making a few scone recipes. One was tried n true, the others were recipes we wanted to try. They were prepared up to placing on the baking sheet. They went into the freezer instead of the oven. Labeled and dated and bagged once frozen. The other night before bed we set the oven to turn on a few minutes before we were getting up. When we woke up, a few scones went on a pan and into the preheated oven. As we dressed they baked. When it was time to sit down to breakfast we had a wonderful fresh baked treat!

    Now I’m thinking about rolled cookie dough. Why couldn’t you roll it out onto waxed paper or plastic or parchment, then roll it around a tube from wrap, seal it in plastic then when you are ready, thaw…unroll…cut and bake? You would obviously need to re-roll trimmings but I think that might work….what are your thoughts?

    My only hesitation is the dough might crack when you unroll it, as freezing tends to dry things out no matter how careful you are. Since the dough is already rolled out, why not cut it into shapes on the parchment, then stack pieces of parchment in the freezer with cutout shapes? When they’re frozen, peel off the parchment and bag to save space. Then just lay on a parchment-lined pan to bake, when you’re ready. Try it both ways, see which you like best – PJH

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  105. Mary Weihs

    Hi! I’ve frozen cookie doughs in the past and had good success. I’ve never considered freezing cookie dough balls like you did above. I wanted to make the Cranberry jems for Christmas so I’m going to try that recipe with your cookie technique.
    On another note, with a wish to make feeding family staying over Christmas Eve easier, I have a scone questions. In one of the posts, you mentioned freezing bisquits and scones ‘on the pan’. I have a Nordic mini scone pan and a few of your KAF delicious scone mixes. Can I freeze these unbaked scones in the Nordic pan, thaw overnight and bake as with the cinnabon buns or like with the muffin post, bake them ahead of time, freeze them and warm them up when I need them? Thanks and Happy Holidays!

    Yes, Mary – either way is fine. I’d freeze without baking, then bake the morning you’re oging to serve them. Thaw overnight (in the pan) in the fridge if you have time… Happy holidays! PJH

    Reply
  106. Brenda

    I made and froze the cheese twists. It worked perfectly! I baked them just before the guests arrived and served them with white wine. I could have made a meal of them. Delicious!

    Hope they become a standby for you, Brenda. So many recipes, so little time, eh? :) PJH

    Reply
  107. Carol Yeghiayan

    Thanks for some wonderful entertaining ideas for the holidays. I’ve been doing the frozen cookie dough for a long time, but the newer recipes were good to try — that freezer of mine gets quite a lot stashed into it. Keep sending along the recipes.

    And, by the way, if your’e ever giving workshops in the Boston area like you’ve done in the past, please sign me up.

    Happy holidays, Carol, Boston, MA

    No Boston classes scheduled at the moment, Carol, but check the Web site every now and then. And heck, you’re only 2 hours from here – come on up and take a class at our Education Center sometime – take a look at our store – it’s s fun trip. I was just in Boston last night, it’s an easy drive… Cheers! PJH

    Reply
  108. Sheila Hanna

    I’m wondering how boulangerie croissant dough would freeze. I have a lot of people coming for the holidays and thought that fresh-from-the-oven croissants would be a wonderful breakfast treat. Do you think I could take the recipe all the way to the cut-into-triangles stage and then stop and freeze the dough between layers of waxed paper or parchment? That way, all I’d need to do is pull out the dough-triangles and let them thaw, roll them up and pop ‘em into the oven! If it will work, I’d keep a hefty supply of these babies on hand year-round – I just love a good croissant with my morning tea!

    Sheila, I haven’t tried it, but it sounds like it should work – I can’t see a reason why it wouldn’t. Go for it! PJH

    Reply
  109. Shirley

    I love all these ideas! Definitely going to do the bacon, cheese, and chive scones. And I like how I can bake just a couple from the freezer every Sunday morning for weeks!

    Reply
  110. Laura

    I have a question regarding freezing cookie dough. Does this work with most doughs? For example would freezing chocolate crinkle dough work (before rolling it it confectioners sugar)?

    Yes, Laura, I’d say the only dough that wouldn’t work well would be something liquid, like tuiles or pizzelle. I’d think any drop cookie dough would work just fine. Give those Crinkles a whirl… PJH

    Reply
  111. Laura

    PJ-

    I tried my cookies and they were fantastic! They baked even better frozen! Now I am moving on to molasses cookies. Do you think that they will also freeze well? I am just concerned about the consistency of the molasses when frozen. Have you tried this?

    Thanks for your answers!

    They’ll be fine, Laura – go for it! PJH

    Reply
  112. Lahren

    I was wondering if the butterscotch-apple sweet rolls would work for freezing. I would like to try it but am worried the apple filling might get a little soggy? This is a recipe from the Baking Sheet Dec 2008. Have not tried it yet at all.
    Thanks for the help.

    I guess all I can say is give it a try – I’ve never made the, either. You might try contacting Susan Reid, the Baking Sheet editor: susan.reid@kingarthurflour.com. She could probably give you some good insight on this, Lahren – PJH

    Reply
  113. Lynne

    So many wonderful ideas. I am learning so much. Baking more (or more accurately learning to bake) was a new years resolution last year and will be one again this year. I’m trying though, with some success.
    I also have to confess to having a can or 2 of the instant batter blaster pancake mix around (someone mentioned it above) for when the little dudes just have to have their cakes! They taste good but I’m looking forward to making some killer ones from scratch and really knocking their socks off!
    Happy Holidays all

    Thanks for joining the fun, Lynne – and you HAVE to try these pancakes! I’m not a good pancake baker, but these are the BEST, and so easy. You make the dry mix, and store it in the fridge or freezer. When ready to make pancakes, just add buttermilk (or milk/yogurt), and an egg. AND they’re whole grain believe it or not – I don’t love whole grain anything, but these are super-tasty, and 3g fiber per pancake. Honestly, try them on your little dudes – I think they’ll like them. Happy holidays – PJH

    Reply
  114. Alison T

    Hope you can help me… I am going to make the dough tonight (12/23), and then shape in the morning (i.e. Christmas Eve morning). I want to serve them Christmas morning. So do I go ahead and proof after shaping, then freeze them for a few hours, then take them out Christmas Eve night to bake Christmas morning? Or should I shape Christmas Eve night and let them proof in the fridge overnight and bake Christmas morning (I think I read somewhere that one can do that)? I’m confused – I hope someone at KAF is checking the comments Christmas eve morning so I can find out! Thanks in advance.

    Alison, I’d refrigerate the dough, unshaped, tonight. Let it rise once, then put in the fridge. Tomorrow, shape the dough in the afternoon sometime, let it rise about halfway (maybe 30-40 minutes or so), then cover, and refrigerate overnight. Bake Christmas morning; it shold have risen more in the fridge overnight, and be ready to go. Good luck – PJH

    Reply
  115. Marlene Stratton

    Happy holidays??? What happened to Merry CHRISTmas??? We are celebrating the birthday of the King of Kings, God come in the flesh — Emanuel, God with us. Don’t every be ashamed to say “Christmas!” He came to earth to live a perfect life and die on the cross for all of our sins, including yours…

    Merry Christmas, Marlene – we said it in the video, too. We usually choose to celebrate the December holidays (Chanukah, too), with a general greeting, in order to include as many of our readers as possible. PJH

    Reply
  116. Alison T

    Thanks so much, PJ! I did as you suggested. My dough was not interested in rising much, and I was worrying that the SAF yeast I had in my freezer was no longer potent. However, these babies perked right up in the oven and turned out DELICIOUSLY (I know you’ve used a term before for yeast products that rise/expand more in the oven but I’m forgetting it now).

    Thanks for the tips! I’ve been freezing cookie dough for years and am so glad to learn how to freeze other products as well. Merry Christmas!

    Oven spring, Alison… so glad everything worked out well for you. Merry Christmas! PJH

    Reply
  117. Claudia Q

    The temperature info for baking the frozen cookies gives only one temp (375 degrees) and then says bake as directed in the recipe (I assume that means the time). What if the original recipe calls for a different temperature?
    Bake the frozen cookies at the temperature your recipe calls for. That particular chocolate chip recipe bakes at 375. Molly @ KAF

    Reply
  118. Alice L. McDonnell

    What great information regarding freezing cookies.

    I’ve been baking cooking for years and never thought of freezing them. I spend the week before Christmas baking, & baking, thinking cookies are best when made fresh just before Christmas.

    From now on I will try the freezing method before Christmas and through out the year.

    Reply
  119. Judy F

    I made the cheese twists today. We had some with dinner and froze the rest for later. Oh my are these ever yum! I used asiago cheese. Next batch I’ll try parmesan. Before cooking the frozen twists, I am going to sprinkle a bit of kosher salt on top. This was my first attempt at puff pastry and since it was so successful and tasty, I will definitely use this recipe again. I also used the recipe for cinnamon rolls and we loved them. In fact, we cooked the third and last pan of those this morning. I know what I’ll be doing next weekend !! Thanks. Love this blog and the entire website.

    Judy, thanks for connecting here, and for your kind words – best of luck with all of your baking in this new year – PJH

    Reply
  120. Megan

    Great blog topic! You seem to think of everything that anyone could possibly want to know. I have a related question to freezing- if a dough recipe calls for overnight refrigeration (ie., your “pain au chocolat” recipe), would it be ok to prepare the dough two days before and just keep it refrigerated for that extra day? Or should it be frozen? Or should that just not be done?

    Thanks!

    Megan: If you’re using a classic puff pastry (one without yeast), you could absolutely just keep it in the frige for 2 days. If your dough is one that includes yeast, the croissants would start to take on a “tangy” flavor, the longer they sit. If you don’t mind that, go for it. Susan

    Reply
  121. Sarah @ Mum In Bloom

    Oh thank you for these wonderful ideas and thorough instructions. We’ve got summer vacation coming up soon and I’d love to have some things ready in the freezer to bake for when we spend all day outside and dont’ feel like planning our baking. The kids will love these :)

    Reply
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  123. cnickmc

    Grateful for your informative site!!
    I’m ready to jump on the frozen pie and baked goods lists!!
    I’ve found that in shipping cookies to Iraq/Afghanistan, etc that the following method works well.
    Bake and freeze cookies solid -freezing lessens the smashing of cookies in the vac procedure. Using a vacuum packing bag slide layers of cookies between sheets of parchment or waxed paper and Vac to close per device’s directions. (I’ve found that putting them in bottom-to-bottom supports the cookies in the vac closure and avoids the arched cookies after being sucked down over the top of the underlying cookie.) Return to freezer til ready to mail. My son’s feedback led to the use of a dividing paper due to the sandwiching of cookies in the dessert temperatures. Cookies travel securely and stay fresh til opened- at which point they vanish, I’m told. Takes less packing materials to ship and less to have to discard at the recipient’s end. The rigidness of the vac’d parcel allows it to be stuffed in duffles, etc.
    Oh, and if cookie or cookie-dough snitchers need to be disuaded- store items in vacuum’d bags. One of my weight management self-imposed secrets, as well!
    Thanks so much for sharing these tips. I’m sure many, many people will find this helpful. ~ MaryJane

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  124. Joan

    KA has done it again.I made the puff pastry today for apple turnovers,so easy,good and flaky.I am so thankful I found this web site I find all the tips and pictures so helpful.Thanks again!One happy Georgia girl<3

    Joan, so glad we could help – enjoy those apple turnovers. ‘Tis the season, eh? PJH

    Reply
  125. kristinec

    My daughters wedding is a few months away and for the party favors, I was planning to have three different size heart shaped sugar cookies decorated with a hard glaze. I was wondering what would be the best way to make ahead (freeze?), so that I am not baking and decorating the week of the wedding. I would like the cookies to be fresh as possible. Do you think this is possible making a month ahead either decorated or decorate the week of the wedding?
    I love the idea of making up the cookie dough ahead of time and freezing, that will so help me with my holiday baking. But for the wedding, I don’t want to be baking 450 cookies the week of….
    Thank you for your always sharing such wonderfully helpful tips!
    Hoping not to be a “too stressed out mother of the bride” ha
    Congratulations to you and your family! Weddings are such amazing occasions, but definitely way up there on the stressometer. You can absolutely bake the cookies up to a month ahead of time and freeze them undecorated. Thaw them overnight and make sure they are dry before glazing. This can be done up to 3 days before the wedding. Be sure to invite some friends over to help. Folks truly love to be involved in little ways like this, and a chance to chat about their own weddings and romances is always a welcome treat. Best of luck! ~ MaryJane

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  126. Savannagal

    I sure wish I’d found your website years ago. I could spend days just reading all your recipes and tips. If you were nearby I’d want to work for you too. I love your company. Thanks much.

    Thanks – our Web site didn’t exist before 1996, so you’ve only missed 15 years, don’t worry! :) PJH

    Reply
  127. jjgncmg1

    PJ: thanks so much. You have totally solved my problem of having the oven broken (the repair guy that came two days ago said I was crazy, but I assured him I learned to bake in a wood cook stove I KNOW what temp the cookies burn at, today I set the oven at 400 and it went off the the scale on the little oven thermometer I bought and burnt my cinabuns in less than 7 minutes!) and will not be fixed until TWO days AFTER Thanksgiving. I will make my drop cookies and freeze away and catch up on the baking later. Thanks.

    Reply
  128. corieweathers

    This is amazing information!!! After reading the comments… Am I right that scones can go straight from the freezer to the oven (with extra baking time), and if I were to do a panatonne I would let fully rise shaped and ready for baking and then freeze, whereas non-sweet yeast breads (like sandwich bread) would be baked until set before freezing? Hoping I have that right.

    Corie, yes, scones can go right from the freezer to the oven. As for yeast breads, current thinking is to freeze shaped, but unrisen. When ready to bake, thaw in the fridge overnight, then leave yourself plenty of time for both coming to room temperature, and then rising before baking. Enjoy – PJH

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  129. ML

    I am so excited to have these tips! I can’t wait to get started! Nothing like being able to offer people fresh baked treats, pour them some tea, coffee, or hot chocolate out of a nice pot, and have a chat. They don’t have to know you weren’t mixing all morning! Ya’ll have inspired a lot of excited bakers with this entry!

    Great to hear! It will be nice to not have to work all morning, and even nicer to know that your guests think you did!-Jon

    Reply
  130. ileencuccaro

    Another quick question, I have been baking getting ready for the holiday, what about freezing ginger bread and other cookies already decorated with royal icing and assorted jimmies and sugars.

    Generally cookies do not freeze well when iced or frosted. Once they thaw, condensation causes the icings and sugars to melt and bleed. Not a pretty picture!-Jon

    Reply
  131. ileencuccaro

    No clue why I can see my post, so I will try again, what about freezing cookies already decorated with royal icing, jimmies and sugars etc

    We do moderate the comments for this blog so we can give a direct answer, so it may take a little while for your comment to be posted. I apologize for the wait!-Jon

    Reply
  132. insitucow

    This post and all the comments/suggestions has me breathing a sigh of relief as I plan an afternoon tea to celebrate my mom’s 90th in barely 3 weeks. Whew – thank you all! Do you know if there is anything special about Madelines that would keep me from freezing them? I’m thinking they should be baked first, do you agree?
    Scones and chocolate chip cookies will definitely be frozen then baked at the last minute. I’m not sure about brownies – but now that I write that I realize there’s no reason not to freeze them after they’re baked and cooled, right?
    I think you ill have success freezing everything on your list except for the Madelines. I would bake those fresh before serving. ~Amy

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  133. insitucow

    Thank you, Amy. I now see that the Madeleine recipe I have says “best the day of”….hm. I may re-think those. My next question has to do with a recipe that says to have all ingredients at room temperature. My house is kept at a chilly 62-64 degrees and my butter-eggs-vanilla mixture is not mixing thoroughly. I presume it’s because the butter is too cold. Will that make much difference in the long run? Since I’ve started, I’ll go ahead and finish the scones, but I welcome your comments. I will also let you know what happens. :)
    Hi there,
    Yes, colder butter, eggs, etc. can definitely change the texture of how your baking comes out. You might want to put your plateful of cold ingredients on a heating pad for a little while to warm them up before baking. ~ MaryJane

    Reply
  134. Cooldude

    I know this series of posts have been around for a while. I am amazed at the wealth of information posted here. Thank you King Arthur!!!! I have learned so much from you!!!!

    And thanks for your kind words – we’re here to help, always. PJH

    Reply
  135. Cooldude

    I made the Flakey Cheesy Twists for the first time. I made the dough and refrigerated the dough over night and made the Twists the next day. They were awesome. I am working on improving my skills of rolling out dough to be the correct size and proportions. This was a good exercise for me :o) I am excited to make up some dough using this recipe and freeze it for later use. Great recipe…..I also want to try the other quick and easy puff pastry recipes…sausage and raspberry expecially!!!!!
    Awesome job! This is such a versatile dough. It is a staple in most bakeries. Elisabeth

    Reply
  136. Steve

    This article is very helpful. What are your thoughts on freezing dough for flat bread: ie pita, chapati, or naan? It sounds like I could make the dough, roll it out, and freeze any leftovers.

    With flatbreads, you could certainly roll out the dough, let it rise slightly (just barely puffing up) and then freeze individually before packing the frozen dough rounds in an airtight container/bag in the freezer. Dough should be used within 1-2 months of freezing to ensure it bakes/cooks up correctly. Alternatively, I would par-cook the dough (until you see some tinges of color on the dough and it has set or puffed visibly–like with pita bread–and then cool and freeze like the dough. You can then warm/toast the flatbread after you pull it from the freezer for fresh flatbreads in minutes. I personally love to use my grill (on medium heat, not ripping hot!) to do this OR in a medium-hot dry skillet to ensure the outside gets a bit toasty while the inside thaws. A light brushing of butter/ghee/oil on the flatbreads before toasting/warming would go a long way to keeping them tender and from drying out before you enjoy them. Kim@KAF

    Reply
  137. rozdiemand

    I love to make scones and would love a good freezer recipe. I have read that some baking powders work better than others in frozen items. What do you rrecommend?

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hmm, I can’t really say I have heard of this suggestion before. Most commercially available double acting baking powder should work about the same in frozen baked goods.-Jon

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      The tablespoon scoop (or #40 scoop) makes a standard size cookie – you can freeze any size cookie dough, from the teaspoon scoop (#100) to the jumbo scoop (#30). Happy Baking (or scooping/freezing!)! Irene@KAF

  138. stephendag

    This question has probably been asked before (maybe even by me!), but I’m going to ask again. What cookies can I BAKE and then freeze. I’ve done it with cut out cookies and that works well. But what about others like snickerdoodles, bar cookies, dropped cookies?

    I have a very compressed baking schedule this year and every time-saving tip will help!

    Thanks!
    Stephen

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Stephen, the only cookies I wouldn’t freeze after baking would be something with a cream-cheese filling – cream cheese rugelach, maybe? Anything else should freeze just fine. Iced cookies are a bit problematic to thaw, as the icing can become beaded with moisture and run; but any of the ones you mentioned above are good candidates for freezing. Make sure to wrap airtight – I like a layer of plastic wrap, then sealed tightly in a plastic bag. Best of luck with your compressed schedule! PJH

  139. Hagan

    Just want I was looking for….. Time savers. What other kinds of cookies can be frozen this way? Oatmeal Raisin, Peanut Butter… Thanks.

    Reply
  140. Susan

    We are about to put our house on the market for sale. I read somewhere that you should bake some cookies before a showing to make the house smell cozy. I thought this would be impossible as getting the house shaped up would be enough, but with your freezing advice, I can bake a few cookies when someone is coming to see the house without all the fuss of making the dough every time. Thank you for this good tip!

    Reply
  141. Janet Davis

    I have been baking cookies since I was about 8 yrs old. Now I am way older than 8 and I still bake lots of cookies especially around the holidays and I also sell my cookies. For years I have mixed my dough and made into logs and freeze the dough so when I am ready to bake, I just slice and bake. My Mom is diabetic and doesn’t do a lot of baking any longer but she has a huge chocolate sweet tooth. In order for her not to eat too much, I make the rolled chocolate chip cookies in smaller rolls for her so she can bake 6-8 cookies and they will last her for a couple of days. I also make sure that she has parchment paper for her cookie sheets.

    Reply
  142. jessica1049

    I’ve been freezing cookie dough balls for years, as I love to make enormous batches of cookie dough. My freezer rarely has enough room in the right shape for a cookie sheet, though, so I use rectangular plastic containers (Rubbermaid, Tupperware, disposables,, any kind). I line the bottom with waxed paper, fill it with dough balls, then another sheet of waxed paper, another layer of dough balls, and so on. They can stay in there indefinitely, but I usually transfer them to a freezer bag, and label the bag with the baking instructions. I can almost always find space for the containers, and don’t have to worry about my cookies picking up odors, either. (And, of course, I use KA Flour!)

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Excellent tip, Jessica – thanks! And thanks, too, for your loyalty to King Arthur Flour – we appreciate having earned a spot in your kitchen! :) PJH

  143. Indyanna

    I love this! Thanks so much for all the detailed photos; those are so helpful. I can’t wait it make the cheese twists! I have one question about the cookies: Can the dough also be frozen in the form of a log, then thawed for slice & bakes?

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel , post author

      Yes, you can certainly form any kind of drop cookie dough into a log instead of into balls. It’s a bit awkward for dough with chips or nuts, as they tend to impede progress when slicing; but if you’re willing to work around these “bumps in the road,” there’s no reason not to do frozen slice & bake rather than frozen drop cookies. Enjoy – PJH

  144. FranNVA

    I have a “slick trick” for all KAF readers. I have a “side by side” fridge and my freezer is very narrow and won’t hold a large cookie sheet to freeze my cookies. What I do is when I make my cookies, I use a cookie scoop and drop them on a strip of wax paper. Roll the cookie ball in the strip of wax paper and then once all have been rolled, I put them in a big zip lock bag, label with contents and cooking directions. That way I can pull out how many cookies I want to cook. I let them sit on the counter a bit to thaw, unroll them and enjoy hot cookies. By rolling them in wax paper, they don’t stick together and I don’t have to wait for them to freeze before putting them ina zip lock bag. Give it a try and you won’t be sorry.

    Reply
  145. Janet

    I hope you are still around. I just read all your comments and loved it. It’s like having your own perfect teacher in your own kitchen. Do we still have to adjust for high altitude? (in Colorado)

    Reply
  146. Susan

    Hi there, and thanks for all this fascinating and helpful information! I thank the KAF Helpline for pointing me to this blog….I’ve found answers to my questions, plus a WHOLE lot more!!

    One more question, as I am a lacto-vegetarian who doesn’t eat eggs. Can you think of a substitute for the egg/water mixture in the Cheese Twist recipe? Is there something else that I can used to bind the two layers of dough together and to give the twists a glaze of sorts? Many thanks in advance for your comments, and Happy Cooking during Happy Holidays!

    Reply
    1. Susan Reid

      Hi, Susan. I have an idea for you. You can mix together 3 tablespoons of cornstarch with three quarter cup of water, bring to a simmer until the mixture thickens, then use the cooled slurry to help bind things together. This mixture is an old baker’s glaze, too, often used on rye breads. Susan

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