Cookies are part of every household’s kitchen cabinet. Are you the ‘stock up on packed biscuits because you enjoy them with your daily tea’ person?
Or are you more of the ‘bake dozens of cookies and parcel them to loved ones’ kind of person? Chances are you could be both.
Regardless, if you love cookies, you likely have them lying about in your home (preferably the kitchen cabinet).
With things as they are, you’re probably wondering, ‘how long do cookies last?’ They have to go bad someday, right? The answer is yes.
Cookies do go stale. However, the good news is you can still eat them. They may not taste as great, but they are still edible.
The only exceptions to eating cookies that have been around for a while are if they have noticeable mold on them or if they smell abnormal.
How Long Do Cookies Last? Do Cookies Go Bad?
If you’re wondering how long you can keep a batch of freshly baked cookies before they go bad, the answer is a maximum of three days—that’s if you store them in a cool and dry place.
To retain their freshness, place the cookies in an airtight container. You can even refrigerate them if you like.
The only problem with doing so is that the cookies may lose their original flavor quickly if kept in the fridge.
You get a lot more days with packed cookies. Unlike homemade baked goods, these ones contain added preservatives that extend their longevity.
Packed or canned goods come with a ‘use by’ date that extends to weeks or even months.
You can still consume them after the ‘best by’ date, granted they don’t have any obvious signs of being unconsumable. The only problem is that they may not taste their best.
The contents of unopened packets or cans of biscuits are okay to eat even after a long time. However, once you open a packet, it’s ideal that you consume the entire thing in one sitting.
This should be easy if you’re entertaining guests. But if you’re on your own and have leftovers, store the remaining cookies in an airtight container.
Any exposure to moisture causes biscuits to lose their texture and become stale quickly.
If you’re someone who tends to open different types of biscuit packets because you enjoy variety on your tea table, you most likely have plenty of half-opened cookie packets around.
What do you do to ensure that they all remain edible? A simple trick to extend the shelf life of leftover cookies is to refrigerate them.
Be sure to transfer them into an airtight container first.
How To Tell If Cookies Are Bad?
What’s great about biscuits is that they are still consumable even when they are at their worst – crumbled or soggy.
Eating them may not be the most delightful for your palate, but you also won’t incur stomach problems from consuming them. That said, there are times when a cookie does go bad (like unusable bad).
Here are some signs to find out if the batch of cookies you’re suspicious about is still edible or if it should go in the trash can:
Say you were in a hurry and unthinkingly put cookies in a slightly damp jar. Or you accidentally left the cover of the container slightly open.
These are a few scenarios that invite moisture and air to mingle with biscuits.
What happens next is that the cookies become a breeding ground for mold to grow. If you notice any kind of film on cookies, it’s best to throw the entire batch out.
If the cookies contain dry fruits and nuts, they can spoil faster than plain ol’ ones. Biscuits with these add-ons typically develop a funny, musty smell when they go bad.
You may not be able to detect this spoilage in the initial stages. However, if you bite into the cookie and it tastes funny, it’s most likely gone stale.
Soft cookies tend to become dry and hard when they are bad. Similarly, hard cookies become soggy and crumble when they pass their prime.
An early morning cup of tea or an afternoon mug of coffee feels incomplete without a few cookies for company.
Although not the healthiest of food choices, it’s okay to indulge in a few biscuits with your beverage.
To not ruin the experience with soggy or flavorless cookies, take care to store them in an airtight container.
If you’re dealing with home-baked cookies, remember this – they will go stale quickly if they contain ingredients that go bad fast.