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7 Easy Make-Ahead Cookie Dough Recipes To Try This Holiday Season

Decorating cookies is much more fun when the dough’s just waiting on you.

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‘Tis the season for making all the cookies. Whether you’re doing a cookie swap with neighbors, wrapping up some gingerbread as gifts, or just prepping ahead for the night you want to decorate cookies with your kids, it’s important to have a few special make-ahead cookie dough recipes that are perfect for freezing this holiday season. Decorating cookies is fun and all, but it’s 100% more fun when the cookies are already made, you know?

The good thing is, make-ahead cookie dough is pretty much all cookie dough. Apart from your more delicate cookies like macarons or meringue cookies, the food blog Gimme Some Oven shared that cookies high in fat (with butter especially) do really well frozen. And you can freeze them in a few different ways. You can freeze the dough in discs, you can go ahead and scoop into balls and freeze, and there’s even a recipe here for slice-and-bake cookies that can be frozen right in the tube shape so all you have to do is cut your pieces.

I know. You didn’t think you would be the kind of person to plan this far ahead, but I believe in you and so do these cookies. These are the best make-ahead cookie dough recipes to try during the holidays, and you’ll be delighted at the thought of frozen cookie dough just waiting for you.


Gingerbread Cookies

There are few things more classic than a gingerbread cookie at Christmas and this gingerbread recipe featured on Yummly is perfect. The dough can be frozen for up to three months — just wrap in discs and pop into a bag — or you can freeze the baked cookies after they’ve cooled.


Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

Want to go ahead and prep Santa’s cookies for Christmas Eve? You’re a genius, and you should also try Pinch of Yum’s soft chocolate chip cookie recipe. Just make the dough, but go ahead and scoop them into balls and freeze them that way. When you’re ready to bake, throw a few balls on a sheet pan to thaw and then pop in the oven.


Cut-Out Sugar Cookies

You’ve got to have cookies to decorate and this cut-out sugar cookie recipe from Yummly is one of my favorites. You can go ahead and fully bake the cookies and then freeze them after if you like, or you can roll the dough into discs and pop them in the freezer until you’re ready to cut them out. You can even go ahead and cut out the raw dough and freeze those individually on a pan before putting them all in a freezer bag to store, too.


Butter-Pecan Slice & Bake Cookies

Slice and bake cookies are pure heaven and I’m so ready to try these butter pecan slice and bake ones featured on Yummly. Just roll up the log, wrap in plastic wrap, and pop in the freezer for up to two months. When you’re ready to slice and bake, move the dough into the fridge to thaw overnight.


Jam Thumbprint Cookies

A classic winter cookie staple is the jam thumbprint cookie. This particular recipe calls for the dough to chill in the fridge for at least two hours (you can do overnight) before rolling into balls, so if you wanted to go ahead and freeze it at that stage, you definitely could. You could also go ahead and roll these into balls and freeze them that way. When you’re ready to bake, let them thaw a bit before adding the jam.


Brown Sugar Cookies

A fun twist on your classic sugar cookie recipe is to try these brown sugar cookies from Gimme Some Oven. The flavor is just lovely, and this dough is also a beautiful one to try with cookie cutters. To freeze, just keep the dough wrapped up in their disc shapes and let it thaw when you’re ready to roll out and cut. You can also, like the other sugar cookie recipe, go ahead and cut out your shapes, freeze those, and then transfer them to a freezer bag.


Chocolate Ginger Molasses Cookies

These super soft, chewy, incredible holiday cookies are a breeze to make — and to freeze. You can go ahead and roll out balls of these chocolate ginger molasses cookie dough from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe and pop them in a bag to freeze and bake when you’re ready.

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