Sadly, Frozen Cookie Dough Doesn't Last Forever

There is a common misconception that when you store food in a freezer, it can last indefinitely. Unfortunately, this is not the case. In fact, has some very strict guidelines on which foods can and cannot be frozen, as well as how long they will last. For example, even after baking, casseroles (with eggs) and quiches should only be stored in the freezer for a maximum of two to three months.

Raw cookie dough is a prime example of a food that probably does not have as long of a freezer shelf life as you thought it did. Since making it can be a labor-intensive endeavor, mixing up an extra-large batch and storing it in the freezer to bake at a later date is a wise, timesaving strategy. However, cookie dough has ingredients such as butter and raw eggs that do not last forever — not even when frozen.

How long does cookie dough last in the freezer?

If you do a search online, you are going to find a wide range of advice when it comes to storing homemade cookie dough in the freezer. For example, Sally's Baking Recipes (along with many other cooking and recipe sites) states that you can "freeze cookie dough for up to 3 months." On the other end of the spectrum, Bob's Red Mill states that while cookie dough only lasts "about three to five days" in the refrigerator, "if you freeze it, the dough can last anywhere from 6 to 12 months."

However, it's always best to have a baseline and get information from an official source. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is made up of 29 agencies that seek to provide food leadership through "the best available science." According to the organization's information base, "Homemade cookie dough should be stored in small containers in the refrigerator for two to four days or freeze for two months."

While this doesn't seem like a lot of time, it means if you want to get a head start on those holiday cookies, you can make and freeze the dough as early as Halloween.