How to Ship Baked Goods Through the Mail
Since, you’ve been baking up a storm in anticipation for the upcoming holidays, what better way to exemplify the notion of “sharing is caring” than with a fresh batch of baked good shipped out to far-away loved ones? From a classic, rum-soaked fruit cake to rich, over-the-top brownies to star-shaped gingerbread cookies to literally anything with pumpkin spice, there’s no shortage of sendable goodies. The very last thing you want is for your carefully wrapped baked goods to crumble or become stale in transit, so here are a few tips and tricks that will help you successfully ship fragile and perishable items through the mail. You can rest assured that your baked goods will arrive with their quality and freshness is in tact.
Think Thoughtfully About the Type of Baked Goods You Want to Send
The best baked goods to ship are the ones that can be wrapped individually, can ship as a whole, and are not prone to melting. Your best bet is any baked good that is sturdy like cookies, pound cakes, cupcakes (ideally without frosting), brownies, breads without yeast, muffins, and bars. Fortunately, these items can withstand a day or two without refrigeration.
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Think Carefully About How You Pack
Parchment paper, aluminum foil, and plastic wrap are the best materials to secure your food followed by an extra layer of covering or fitted in a ziplock bag. When packing cookies, brownies, or bars, place a sheet of wax/parchment paper between each layer if you are packing them together. If you stop by your local craft store you can find decorated cake tins or boxes to pack the wrapped goods in. Also, your handy-dandy plastic containers are ideal for sealing in freshness.
Try to avoid foods that need to be refrigerated. In the case you have to ship something that needs to remain cold, pack your food in a styrofoam container surrounded by frozen gel packs. Once your goods are wrapped properly, find a small- to medium-sized box that will fit all the contents with a little extra room for padding. Bubble wrap, newspapers, and styrofoam are good for stuffing inside the box to prevent your baked goods from moving around while shipping.
Think Strategically About How and to When Ship
If you are doing weekend baking, the best time to ship is Monday or earlier in the week. Don’t want to wait until late Friday night to drop off your package because there is a chance it will sit in the sorting facility over the weekend. Shipping can be costly, especially when it is expedited, but the best shipping option for perishable goods is overnight-air, next-day-air, or two-day-air. It’s recommended that you pack all your goodies in a brand new box that’s sealed with packing tape instead of duct tape or masking tape. Even though surprises are always great, it’s not the worst idea to alert the people you are shipping the baked goodies to, so they can look out for the package.