Cookie Jars

Published February 1, 2012. From Cook's Country.

We wanted our jar to keep cookies fresh, intact, and easy to grab.

Overview:

Cookie jars come in shapes and sizes of all sorts: You can buy one that looks like the Cookie Monster, Tinker Bell, or Mr. T. But what about function? We want our jar to keep cookies fresh, intact, and easy to grab. Avoiding novelty jars, we bought four models, one each in glass, plastic, ceramic, and stainless steel, all with at least 4-quart capacity so they could hold plenty of baked goods. We looked for jars with a tight seal to maintain freshness and with openings wide enough to allow us to reach inside for really big cookies (up to 4 inches in diameter). We filled the jars with French tuile cookies (they’re brittle, so particularly susceptible to humidity) and inspected them daily for a week: Even the worst performer kept the cookies crisp for a respectable four days. Next we filled each jar with a moisture-sensitive color indicator called Drierite; its crystals change from blue to pink as dampness penetrates. After seven days, we noticed changes in color, which were more drastic in some jars than in others. Only one jar… read more

Cookie jars come in shapes and sizes of all sorts: You can buy one that looks like the Cookie Monster, Tinker Bell, or Mr. T. But what about function? We want our jar to keep cookies fresh, intact, and easy to grab. Avoiding novelty jars, we bought four models, one each in glass, plastic, ceramic, and stainless steel, all with at least 4-quart capacity so they could hold plenty of baked goods. We looked for jars with a tight seal to maintain freshness and with openings wide enough to allow us to reach inside for really big cookies (up to 4 inches in diameter). We filled the jars with French tuile cookies (they’re brittle, so particularly susceptible to humidity) and inspected them daily for a week: Even the worst performer kept the cookies crisp for a respectable four days. Next we filled each jar with a moisture-sensitive color indicator called Drierite; its crystals change from blue to pink as dampness penetrates. After seven days, we noticed changes in color, which were more drastic in some jars than in others. Only one jar kept the Drierite blue. It made an airtight seal that can keep our homemade cookies fresh, crisp, and delectable for days—if they last that long.

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  • Product Tested

    Results Key:

    Good ★ ★ ★ Fair ★ ★ Poor
  • Prices are subject to change.
  • Highly Recommended - Winner

    OXO Good Grips Pop Storage Container, Big Square 4 Quart

    No other container in our lineup had an airtight seal (activated by a pop-up button on the lid). We also liked that the clear plastic (BPA-free) jar showed off our baking. The container was easy to clean, but the lid’s nooks and crannies took more effort, and the lid is not dishwasher-safe. We tested the 4-quart model; the container comes in several sizes and shapes.

    • Performance ★★★
    • Ease of Cleaning ★★

    $16.99

    BUY NOW Amazon
  • Recommended

    Oggi Jumbo 9.5-Inch Ceramic Cookie Jar

    This ceramic jar kept cookies crisp. Our moisture indicator stayed dry, too—until the weather turned damp. Then it discolored slightly, telling us that in spite of a rubber gasket, the jar lacked an airtight seal. This model is easy to clean, with no nooks to trap crumbs.

    • Performance ★★
    • Ease of Cleaning ★★★

    $19.95

    BUY NOW Amazon
  • Recommended

    Anchor Hocking 1-Gallon Heritage Hill Jar with Glass Lid

    This glass model was a looker, bringing to mind a jar you might find on the counter of an old-fashioned general store. The heavy glass lid did a decent job keeping cookies fresh—as long as the humidity was low. Washing was a breeze.

    • Performance ★★
    • Ease of Cleaning ★★★

    $9.99

    BUY NOW Amazon
  • Recommended with Reservations

    Basic Essentials English Heritage Cookie Bin

    This handsome stainless steel tin was the roomiest of the models we tested. Unfortunately, it ranked last for cookie freshness. Also, the deep seams along the bottom and sides filled with crumbs, making cleanup a hassle.

    • Performance ★★
    • Ease of Cleaning

    $12.99

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