Do Danishes Need to Be Refrigerated? | Proper Storage Guide


Danishes are a delightful treat and one of my guilty pleasures when traveling. Hotels always seem to have these things lying around. However, after “stealing” a few one day, I wondered if I could keep them on the counter or whether I needed to keep them cold. So, I did some research, and this is what I learned.

Danishes do not need to be refrigerated if they are to be consumed in the first 2 days. Just put them in a paper bag, and they are fine at room temperature. However, if you plan to eat them after 2 days, danish should be kept in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 7 days or freezer for up to 2 months.

The rest of the article will go into greater detail on the proper storage of danishes and other pastries.

How Do You Keep Danishes Fresh?

The best way to keep danishes eaten within 2 days fresh is at room temperature is in paper bags. Paper bags help retain the crisp moisture and prevent sogginess caused by condensation that forms inside. However, if storing them in the fridge or freezer, keep them in an airtight bag or container.

Whether filled with fruit, jam, custard, cream cheese, or topped with icing, the storage guidelines for these pastries are the same.

Pro Tip: You can still use plastic bags to extend the freshness of danishes. Just put the danish-filled paper bag inside a plastic bag. This will help guarantee you crispiness and freshness, as long as you squeeze out all the air.

How Long Do Danishes Last in the Fridge?

Danish and most other pastries will last up to 7 days in the fridge. For optimal refrigerator storage, cover individual danishes with plastic wrap, and place them in zip-lock bags, then remove any excess air. If you have airtight containers, you can use them instead of zip lock bags.

For short periods it is best to store danishes at room temperature. But after two days you should keep them in the fridge to preserve freshness.

Types of Danishes Matter, but Only a Little

Pastries like danishes are popular in many countries around Europe and the US. The most common varieties include cinnamon rolls, cream cheese danish, custard or jam-filled, and cream-filled buns.

If you happen to buy more than you are going to eat in one day, the good news is that there are ways to store them to keep them fresh for long periods and enjoy your Danish whenever you feel like it. Because of the fresh ingredients, as mentioned before, danishes do not last long at room temperature. That is especially true if they contain cheese, cream, or custard.

Long story short, if your danish or pastry doesn’t have cream cheese or custard, you can probably get away with leaving them on the counter for 3 or 4 days. Even so, for optimal freshness, you probably want to throw them in the fridge just to be safe.

How Long Do Danishes Last at Room Temperature?

Danishes last up to 48 hours at room temperature if kept in paper bags inside zip-closed plastic bags. However, the freshness and safety of your Danish at room temperature depends on the cheese content, the type of ingredients used, and other factors, including their baking.

If you are planning to eat your pastries soon, it is best not to refrigerate them to avoid moisture affecting the characteristic crispiness of Danishes.

Avoid leaving your pastries on the counter uncovered. Placing a lid, foil, or butter paper, are all correct methods to prevent dryness and bacteria growth.

Do Cream Cheese Danishes Need to Be Refrigerated?

As a rule of thumb, it is best to store pastries with cream cheese or custard in the refrigerator. Despite their baking process, they contain cheese and other ingredients which must be kept fresh in the fridge. Of course, it depends on how long you want to store your pastries.

If you just bought them and know you will eat them in a few hours, room temperature storage is fine. However, for long periods, you must refrigerate them. Bacteria can start growing after two hours of room temperature exposure on cream cheese so, watch out.

Not to lose flavor or texture, you should take your Danishes out of the fridge a couple of hours before you eat them. Use the same steps described above to store your pastries, and you’ll be guaranteed better preservation.

Can You Freeze Danishes?

Have you bought tons of Danishes when you were hungry, and now you don’t know what to do with them? Don’t worry! You don’t have to throw them away. Instead, you can freeze pastries for a longer shelf-life.

Freezing them will allow you to keep Danish fresh for up to 2 months at peak quality. Of course, you could freeze them indefinitely, but they will only retain their maximum quality for 7 to 8 weeks.

For optimal storage, follow the same recommendations for refrigerating them. Place your zip-lock or airtight containers in the freezer.

Now you can enjoy your Danish when you have sugar cravings and enjoy them fresh as if they had been recently bought. However, for a better eating experience, here are a couple of tips.

  1. When it is time to eat your pastries, do not defrost them in the microwave unless you like to eat a soggy mess. Instead, wait for them to defrost at room temperature or warm them in the oven at 175 degrees Celsius for five to ten minutes. That way, they will maintain their crispiness and their delicious flavor.
  2. Baked and frozen pastries stale quicker when heater for a second time. As a rule of thumb, whatever you defrost them, it is best to eat them immediately. So, avoid defrosting more than what you are going to eat.

How Long Do Danishes Last?

Two Types of Danishes on a Plate

Depending on how you decide to store Danish, they can last between 2 days and 2 months.

Of course, they are most enjoyable when eaten fresh, but sometimes you might find yourself in the situation of having to store them longer. Use the following tips to keep them fresh for longer.

  • Store your Danishes when they are completely cool. If they are still warm or freshly baked, you should wait for a little before placing them in the fridge.
  • Also, you must take into account that while the cold temperatures of the refrigerator contribute to slowing down bacteria growth, they will also mess up the taste and texture of your food. So, unless you know you won’t eat your pastries within a couple of days, avoid refrigerating them.
  • However, placing them in the fridge is still a better alternative than letting them go spoiled on your counter. Plus, if done correctly, you may be able to retain flavor and texture.

Final Thoughts

Fresh pastries are a blessing at any time of the day. You might buy Danishes on Friday for your Saturday brunch, buy a bunch on sale, or thief them from a hotel like me. 🙂

While danishes come in different varieties, but there is one thing they all have in common. They are hard as heck to keep fresh! I hope this article has been helpful in that regard.

Thanks for stoppin’ by!

For more, don’t miss Does Cake Need to Be Refrigerated? | How to Store All Types.

Anne James

Hi, I'm Anne but my grandchildren call me Jelly Grandma. I have over 50 years of experience as a Southern cook and am a retired librarian. I love sharing what I have learned. You can find me on YouTube as well! Just click the link at the bottom of your page. I hope your visit here has been a sweet one.

Related Articles