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How Long Can Cookie Dough Sit Out: Expert Advice

How Long Can Cookie Dough Sit Out you may wonder – so let’s find out!
There is nothing quite like scraping the scraps from the bowl after making some fresh cookie dough, cookie dough bites are also something of a dream. There are few people out there who dislike cookie dough, and half of us are very enthusiastic fans of it. 

How Long Can Cookie Dough Sit Out

However, cookie dough is not like baked cookies, and you cannot leave it out for too long, or it will go bad. 

We often have many questions about cookie dough and how we should deal with it to stop getting bad. 

It is not uncommon to ask questions such as;

  • ‘Does cookie dough need to be refrigerated?’
  • ‘What do I do if I forget to refrigerate cookie dough?’ 
  • ‘Can you leave cookie dough out overnight?’

The answer is not a simple yes or no to any of these questions, so, we will break it down for you.

What Makes Cookie Dough Bad?
How Long Can Cookie Dough Sit Out

Here’s the deal. Cookie dough does contain eggs, so raw cookie dough does contain raw eggs, as the eggs in this help to keep the ingredients together. 

Why does this matter?

Raw eggs are dangerous enough since they can contain salmonella and E. coli, so you should never eat too much of this glorious stuff. Once the eggs are cooked, the danger is gone. 

Yet, eggs are like any dairy product, if you used butter instead of eggs, or milk, or perhaps another diary-based binding agent it does not matter, the cookie dough will still go bad. 

Dairy products are one of the many products that can go bad very quickly, once cooked they will last longer, but raw, they can go bad fast. 

But, there’s a catch. Not all cookie dough is made equally, the vegan cookie dough will have substitutes, and may last longer due to the lack of dairy, but you still shouldn’t leave it out for long.

How Long Can Cookie Dough Sit Out?

So, how long can cookie dough sit out? Well, it depends.

If your cookie dough is purchased and not homemade, you can expect the packaging to tell you when it has gone off and how long it can be left out, or how you should store it. 

The information on pre-made, packaged cookie dough should tell you things like how long it takes for refrigerated cookie dough to come to room temperature, in case they recommend you keep it cool. 

However, if you are making it yourself, things get more complicated. 

How Long Can Raw Cookie Dough Sit Out?

Once you have made a delicious fresh batch of raw cookie dough, but perhaps do not want to make cookies right away, it is best to store it in the refrigerator until you intend on using it. 

When cookie dough is raw, it can sit out for between 2-4 hours. After this, you need to wrap it and refrigerate or freeze it. This is especially important if the cookie dough contains dairy, such as eggs or butter. 

If you do not, the dough may spoil, which will make you sick.

How Long Can Cookie Dough Stay In The Fridge?

If you have made some raw cookie dough with the intention of cooking with it later, store it in the fridge. In the fridge, it can stay there for 2 to 4 days just fine. However, if you do not intend on cooking with it for a while, freeze it for up to 2 months.

It may sound strange, but you could also store it in small sections if you want to be able to take bits out to use from time to time.

How To Tell If Cookie Dough Is Bad

That is not all though, if you have left your cookie dough out for too long, and it goes bad, you will want to know how to tell. 

The best way is with sight. Look for any mold on the dough, as this is a sure sign it has gone bad. Darker sides are also a symptom of bad cookie dough. 

How can you actually use this? Well, when you are looking at your dough to make sure it is okay, check the edges and look closely at them. If you notice the sides are darker than the center, chuck that batch away because it has gone bad.

Taking Care Of Your Cookie Dough

Why does this matter? 

Cookie dough may be delicious, but if you eat it when it has gone bad it can make you really sick, which may put you off cookie dough full stop. No one wants that, we love cookie dough, it really is delicious, but when it is bad it is far from delicious. 

Always be cautious of your dough, and keep an eye out for dark edges, bad smells, and mold. 

A couple more points on why this is important. 

If you do eat bad cookie dough, you may get the following symptoms;

  • Fever.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Vomiting.

Among others, these symptoms are ones you do not want to associate with cookie dough. Check your dough, and as long as it is safe, enjoy! 

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