How to Make Refrigerator Cookie Dough – Save Money and Use Healthier Ingredients

This idea was born out of pure laziness. I was hungry for my Easy {Low} Sugar Cookies, but the idea of chilling the dough, and rolling out the cookie dough, then cutting out the dough…oh it was all just too much.

I don’t want to knead bread dough, I don’t want to roll out sugar cookies…has it really come to this? (Yes.) So here is what I did to save myself some effort and time:

I mixed the dough. I took half of the dough and I rolled it up in parchment paper – just like a tube of dough you would buy at the store, except that mine didn’t have a Pillsbury Dough Boy pictured on the side. I stuck the tube in the fridge. It worked so well, I did the same with the other half of the dough. It was too easy. An hour later, I sliced my cookie dough tubes. I baked my slices (just as the recipe states). I rejoiced that I had avoided the difficult task of using a rolling pin. I ate a cookie.

Sugar Cookie Collage

Just a reminder that these cookies are very low in sugar – kind of like a sweet, buttery biscuit. We don’t miss the extra sugar because they are so delicious just as they are. If you were wanting to try the Easy {Low} Sugar Cookies recipe but balked at the idea of rolling and cutting and getting flour down the front of your shirt – just roll the dough into a tube. You will feel so Betty Crocker-ish, perhaps a little Martha Stewart-y, but mostly you will break in to a Heavenly Homemaker dance. Do not ask me to show you what this looks like. 

One thing has led to another with cookie dough tubes in my kitchen. These are all the other important facts you need to know:

These Cookie Dough Tubes freeze well.Yum

These are so easy and fun to make, that I found that it made sense to make several batches to freeze to have on hand for all the cookie emergencies. To do this, simply place the parchment paper-wrapped dough into freezer bags, label, and freeze. Thaw in the fridge, if you think ahead better than I do. Otherwise, set the frozen dough tube on the counter-top for about 15 minutes, then slice and bake (according to the time and temp as directed in the cookie recipe). Yes, it’s that easy.

These Cookie Dough Tubes cost much less than what you can buy at the store.

I did the math, because I was curious and thought maybe you would be too.

One recipe of sugar cookie dough cost me roughly $2.60. This was using high quality ingredients, most of them organic. I get two tubes of dough out of one batch, each making about 18 cookies. This breaks down to $1.31 for one tube of cookie dough! Take that, Dough Boy! (I’m sorry. That wasn’t nice. You are adorable. You just aren’t good for us. And you are expensive. This is not your fault, because you are imaginary.)

These Cookie Dough Tubes aren’t limited to just sugar cookies.

Obviously, you can use this same idea to make other varieties of cookie dough. Chocolate chip works very, very well.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Collage

Need the recipes? But of course!

Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies

Easy {Low} Sugar Cookies

I haven’t tried yet, but I’m very sure this idea will work with:

Whole Wheat Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

Christmas Spice Cookies

How to Make Refrigerator Cookie Dough

Have you tried this idea before? What other varieties of cookies should we try with this idea?

Comments

  1. Linda in FL says

    Years ago I was making a ton of cookies around Christmas time and was dreading it. This was shortly after the new “trays” of cookie dough came out in the stores. It inspired me to try the idea with my homemade dough. I made all the different types of dough one day (which is, of course, the messiest part of the project). I patted each batch onto a big (15×18?) jelly roll pan and froze it for about 30 minutes. Before it froze into a solid rock, I took it out and cut it into little squares with my pizza cutter. Then, I refroze until solid, broke the little squares apart and put them in a big ziploc bag. It’s amazing how perfect little round cookies come out of little squares of cookie dough!

    Now whenever I make cookie dough, I double the recipe and use this method to freeze the dough. If I want some right then, I just cook them after cutting them apart instead of refreezing until solid. :)

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    Tera B Reply:

    Love this idea Linda! Thanks for sharing.

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  2. Annie T. says

    When I was fourteen, I worked at a boys’ camp for the summer (also the year after, when I was fifteen) as the Dessert Cook. I made a LOT of cookies – do you have any idea how many cookies it takes to feed 80 people? 160 at least, but better plan on 200 or more. I’d make up fifteen to a tray, and at last 12 trays. When I had extra dough I would make it up into rolls and freeze it – it worked better than freezing pre-baked cookies, one reason being they required planning and thawing before use, which meant that they couldn’t be grabbed out for a quick treat. We would use those rolls on the weekend, when I was off. It worked so well that my mother started doubling her batches of cookie dough during the off season, so there was always cookie dough in the freezer for rental groups.

    This year for Christmas cookies, my little brothers and I will make up dough starting in early December, bake a few for munchings and crunchings (and if you don’t know where that line is from, we need to talk), and freeze the rest of the dough – when it gets closer to time for sending cookies out, we’ll bake them up.

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  3. Jill says

    I bought a bunch of organizational drawer trays from the dollar store. The ones you might put pencils in…about 2 inches by about 10 inches. I line them with waxed paper or saran wrap then squish the dough into them, wrap the waxed paper/saran wrap around them and freeze. Once frozen, I pop them out of the trays.

    Because they are square shaped logs, they stack SO well in the freezer. I can even stand them on their short end if I need to. Like Linda in FLA, I found that square dough almost always cooks down to a circular shape. And even if it doesn’t, my cookies are awesome, if I may brag, so the shape is irrelevant.

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  4. Karen says

    This is my favorite way to freeze cookie dough. I like to include a frozen tube of cookie dough when I take meals to folks. They can slice and bake when it is convenient for them.

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  5. fruGALity says

    Will this work if you wrap the log in plastic wrap? I never keep parchment paper on hand, but I typically do have plastic wrap.

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    Laura Reply:

    Yes, that will work, although the dough may stick a little bit to the plastic at first. :)

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  6. Deb says

    How does this compare to the store-bought ones for eating straight out of the tube with a spoon? ;)

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    Laura Reply:

    Well now, just like anything that’s homemade, the cookie dough/spoon is better than storebought. :) :)

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  7. says

    What a great idea! I’ve frozen cookie dough in balls only to find out, during a personal cookie emergency, that my teenage son had been eating them. (Can’t blame him — they’re yummy.) Freezing them in rolls would definitely solve that. He’s too lazy to slice and bake them himself!

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  8. Melissa M. says

    Has anyone tried to make this with coconut oil ( for that coconut flavor)? I’m also wondering if anyone had added pecans or shredded coconut and how it worked out.

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