Meringue cookies are beautiful and delicious. They are also fairly difficult to make. It’s not so much skill that you need for them, it’s patience. And when you are slow-baking meringue cookies in the oven, it’s always tempting to make a large batch. However, no one wants to eat that many meringue cookies. There are other issues with cookie baking too. For example, here is what one of our beloved readers told us recently:
The holidays are rolling around, and is there anything better than having a bunch of different kinds of cookies to serve to your guests and give as gifts? I’ve always entertained this idea, but there is no way I can find enough time for baking all that right before Christmas (see also article on how to freeze turkey). As you can imagine, I’d like to bake some cookies ahead of time. Now I am wondering, is freezing cookies a good idea? Specifically, I’m worried about my meringue cookies. Will they taste the same after being frozen?
Well, we can tell you right away, meringue cookies (see also How To Freeze Lemon Meringue Pie) are actually great candidates for freezing. Here is how to do it:
How To Freeze Meringue Cookies?
The good news is that freezing meringue cookies (see also Should You Freeze Pavlova?) definitely can be done, however, we didn’t say it will be easy. Truth be told, it is not that difficult, but you’ll need to be careful and gentle towards your cookies if you want to preserve their farm.
Before we go over freezing meringue cookies, here are some tips for keeping meringue cookies in the freezer:
#1 Let the cookies cool down completely. Freezing warm food pretty much never works, but with meringue cookies, it is even more important to cool them down completely. If you put warm cookies in an air-tight container, condensation might form on the walls which can, in turn, completely ruin the look and taste of your meringue cookies.
#2 But don’t leave them sitting out for too long. Even though you’ll want your cookies to be completely cool, it’s better to freeze them sooner rather than later. If you leave the cookies out for too long before freezing, they might taste a bit stale when thawed.
#3 Use an air-tight container. With pretty much anything you freeze, air-tight containers are better than regular ones. In the case of meringue cookies, again, this is very important. These gentle cookies will absorb the flavour of anything else around it, so you’ll want to keep them super protected.
#4 Protect your cookies. Meringue cookies are incredibly fragile, even when frozen. If you don’t pack them right, they could get broken and pretty much turn into dust. For this reason, it’s best to use hard-sided containers and put a bit of thought in how you will arrange your meringue bites.
If you follow these tips, your meringue cookies should keep well in the freezer. Choose a hard-sided box or a freezer-safe cookie tin. When freezing meringue cookies, you’ll probably want to arrange them horizontally in layers, so it might take a bit of trial and error to find a container where they will fit perfectly.
In any case, it’s best to arrange the meringue cookies in a single layer and then place parchment paper over it before you add the next layer. This way, you’ll prevent the cookies from sticking to each other and help preserve their shape. Once your container is ready, close it, and remember to label it with the current date. Now your meringue cookies are ready for the freezer!
If you want your meringue cookies to last for longer in the fridge, you might want to consider using a food saver machine (also known as vacuum sealer. A vacuum sealer will, obviously, get all of the air out of the package with your meringue cookies, which will help perfectly preserve their texture, flavour, and shape. Some food savers also work with containers and not just bags, which is a feature we especially love when freezing meringue cookies (see also How To Freeze Meringue).
How To Defrost Meringue Cookies?
As you know, and we already mentioned, the fragility of meringue cookies is perhaps their most important characteristic. They need to be baked slowly at a low temperature, and that’s the principle you’ll want to respect when thawing. Don’t use any heating method – not the microwave, not the oven. All of this will damage the texture of these beautiful cookies. Luckily, the alternative is very simple. Simply leave your meringue cookies on the counter for an hour or two and they will be ready to eat. You don’t even need to eat them immediately. Thawed meringue cookies can be kept inside a cookie tin (or other air-tight container) for at least a week. Meringue cookies are full of air so they will thaw fast.
One thing you shouldn’t do with meringue cookies is freeze them two times. Once they are defrosted, it’s time to eat them.