Can You Freeze Gingerbread Dough?

Nothing spells Christmas like gingerbread. What is better than a gingerbread cookie with a cup of steaming hot chocolate? If you have children, they will surely love gingerbread men and if you want to be extravagant, you could make a gingerbread house and spend time with your children decorating it.

However, it can be time-consuming to make gingerbread so is it possible to make it in bulk and freeze what you don’t want to use straight away? The answer is simple. Yes, you can freeze gingerbread dough, and in this article, we will tell you how to freeze gingerbread dough and how to defrost it. 

How To Freeze Gingerbread Dough

It isn’t that much different from freezing gingerbread dough to other types of cookie dough (see also Is Freezing Cookie Dough A Good Idea?). It is an easy process, and this is how to do it.

1. Make the gingerbread dough.

You probably have your favorite recipe so use this to make your dough. 

2. Roll the dough into balls.

Each ball needs to be the size of a cookie or a gingerbread man. You may have to estimate this.

3. Wrap the dough balls in cling film.

Wrap each dough ball in two or three layers of cling film. Make sure that the dough is wrapped tightly so that freezer burn doesn’t occur. Freezer burn will change the taste and texture of the dough and you won’t have tasty cookies.  

4.Put the dough balls in a freezer bag.

Squeeze out the air from the freezer bag so that freezer burn doesn’t occur. Don’t fill the bag right up to the top as the dough balls may expand when frozen. Put a label on the bag with the contents and the date frozen. Because you have individually wrapped the dough balls, they won’t stick together, and you can take out just as many as you need. 

5. Freeze.

Tips For Freezing Gingerbread Dough

  1. Freeze the gingerbread dough in balls so that you only take out as much dough as you need to make your cookies or gingerbread men. You might decide to make a big batch of dough so that you can have fresh cookies throughout the Thanksgiving and Christmas periods. Dividing the dough up allows you to do this.
  2. Wrap the dough tightly in cling film and squeeze the air out of the freezer bag to avoid freezer burn. Freezer burn ruins the taste and texture of food and you will certainly not enjoy your cookies. 
  3. It’s a good idea to add the instructions for baking the cookies or gingerbread men on the label. If you have a lot of recipe books, you might not remember which one you used.

For How Long Can You Freeze Gingerbread Dough?

You can freeze gingerbread dough for between two and three months, although the sooner you use it, the tastier it will be. Remember to put the date you put the dough in the freezer on a label so that you don’t keep it in the freezer for too long. If you do, the dough will start to deteriorate in both texture and taste and eventually, bacteria will start to develop. So, just make enough dough that you think you will need for the next couple of months.

How Do You Defrost Gingerbread Dough?

Don’t defrost the dough on your countertop as it will take longer than two hours and bacteria could start to develop. Instead, take out as many dough balls as you need and put them in the fridge overnight. Defrosting them slowly means that the texture will be retained, and bacteria won’t form.

Can You Refreeze Gingerbread Dough?

Our recommendation is that you don’t refreeze gingerbread dough. When you freeze, defrost, and then freeze again, moisture is lost and the whole texture of the dough will change. In addition, there is the danger that the dough can spoil before it is frozen again. Freezing food does not kill bacteria, so once thawed, bacteria continues to develop at the same rate as it did before it was frozen.

However, if you make gingerbread cookies or gingerbread men and you have too many, you can refreeze them. It is advisable to do this as soon as possible to stop bacteria from forming.

Is It a Good Idea To Freeze Gingerbread Dough?

Yes, it is. In fact, it is one of the best doughs to freeze. Only sugar cookie dough freezes better.  Gingerbread dough is hardy, and the texture barely changes when it is defrosted. It is highly likely that you won’t be able to tell the difference between cookies made from frozen dough and cookies made out of fresh dough.

Frequently Asked Questions

Hopefully, you now know all there is to know about freezing gingerbread but in case you are still curious about freezing gingerbread dough or gingerbread in general, we have answered a few questions here.

What ingredients do I need for cookie dough?

You will need flour, ground ginger, bicarbonate of soda, unsalted butter, granulated sugar, eggs, and black treacle.

Can I freeze gingerbread men with decorations?

The best decorating tool is royal icing, and this does freeze (see also How To Freeze Icing) so if you use this, you will be able to freeze your decorated gingerbread men. Just remember to wrap the gingerbread men tightly in cling film to stop freezer burn. Lay them out in an airtight container. They might get crushed if they are put in a freezer bag.

Can I freeze gingerbread cake?

Gingerbread cake is a dark and moist cake that combines the old-fashioned flavors of ginger and molasses. It is nice topped with either buttercream or cream cheese frosting and enjoyed at tea-time with a piping hot cup of tea or coffee.

The good news is that you can freeze gingerbread cake whether it is homemade or shop-bought. If you think that you are going to use the whole cake within two or three days, wrap the whole cake in cling film. If you don’t think you will use it all, wrap individual slices. Make sure that you wrap the cake tightly and then put it in a freezer bag or airtight container. If you use a freezer bag, squeeze out the air to avoid freezer burn.  

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