Why It's Important To Be Patient And Let Those Cookies Cool

Regardless of what you celebrate, the holiday season is dedicated to merrymaking and memories with family and friends alike. Although each person's holiday traditions vary from the next, there are a few common denominators that cultures from different backgrounds share during the holiday season. From decorating the Christmas tree and menorah display to neighborhood caroling and turning the volume on "A Kwanzaa Song," joy is the center of the holidays. One shared tradition among the many cultures that define the holiday season is baking.

You can picture it now: Grandma's hands kneading the dough for the perfect baker's dozen of chocolate chip cookies. You grab the snowflake cookie cutter for your sugar cookies and shape them in the perfect holiday image before popping them into the oven where they'll bake only as long as Grandma allows. Once you remove the piping-hot cookies, you're desperate to tear them off the baking sheet and dive into the ooey-gooey goodness that is chocolate chip cookies.

However tempting it is not to, though, there's good reason to let your cookies cool before consuming them.

Letting your cookies cool is critical to their shape and texture

For the non-baker, there's no good reason to let them cool — come on, just dive right in and enjoy! But what the average person might not know about homemade cookies is that the baking process continues outside of the oven. Not only do the proteins and starches continue transforming within the cookie, but according to Food Crumbles, water continues evaporating from the pastry even after the oven timer dings. How long the cookies rest after baking determines just how much water escapes the cookie. If you're hoping for a crunchy cookie, cool them longer. If you don't cool them long enough, they'll lose shape and fall apart before you can manage to take a bite.

But it's not just the time spent cooling that determines the texture of the cookie. It's how you cool them. Food Crumbles says that a cooling rack is the most effective method for cooking cookies because the air circulates the entire cookie. Letting the cookies cool on the same tray they were baked on is another great method but can create an uneven moisture ratio with a slightly soggier bottom.

The bottom line, however, is to remain as patient as possible and let your cookies cool long enough to retain their shape and the perfect amount of moisture.