The Best Ways To Keep Bread Fresh

Bread can quickly go bad if you don't store it properly. According to Well + Good, bread can only stay good for up to a week depending on several factors. But no matter if you've successfully made your own loaf or you simply have more than you can eat before the bread turns hard or moldy, you must take steps for the bread to keep fresh. Determining the best method requires evaluating several things first, though.

The shelf life of bread depends on the amount of fat that is in it. Apart from enriched breads that use a lot of butter or even eggs, different kinds of flour have higher and lower fat contents too according to Insider. However, if you don't plan to eat bread within a few days, that can also play a big role in the best way to store your bread. Fortunately, there are several ways you can keep bread fresh for as long as you need to.

Avoid this common bread storing mistake

Those who plan to eat their bread within three or four days can plan to keep it at room temperature on their countertop. But there are a few things you need to get right to simply store bread at room temperature. According to Well + Good, the worst thing you can do is place bread in a plastic resealable bag or anything that could lock in too much moisture. This leads to mold and a shorter shelf life.

For the best room temperature storage, use a bread box or a loose paper bag. These will allow for enough airflow for the bread to get the right balance of humidity and air that it needs to keep fresh. Once you have the right container for your bread, make sure to place it in a place that won't get too much heat. That includes heat from sunlight and heat from appliances, according to Food & Wine.

No matter the method you use for storing your bread, if you want to warm it back up without drying it out, you can use your oven. Simply place the bread in aluminum foil and let it warm up in a 300-degree Fahrenheit oven.

The fridge is a temporary bread storage fix

While storing bread at room temperature is highly successful for the short term, there are other methods for keeping bread good for longer periods. Though it is not necessarily recognized as a perfect method for preserving bread, the fridge can be helpful. According to Insider, the fridge is a useful tool because it provides a consistent temperature which helps regulate the moisture within the bread.

Using the fridge is not a long-term solution, though. It, too, is best used for shorter stints. It might help keep bread fresher for a little bit longer than at room temperature, but bread can still go bad in the fridge. The colder temperature can even cause negative side effects such as degrading the texture of the bread if left in the fridge too long. So don't depend on the fridge to keep bread for long stretches. Those who need to keep bread for more than a week should turn to another proven method.

Go with the tried and true for storing bread

The freezer is a tried and true method for significantly extending the shelf life of many foods, including bread. According to Insider, when you freeze bread, you can keep it for up to six months (depending on how well it freezes). And that goes back to its fat content once again. By freezing bread, it shouldn't mold or go stale soon after at all. There are two different ways to make the most of this method, though.

Many might think you could simply place the entire loaf of bread in the freezer inside its own packaging or inside a sealed container to prevent freezer burn. Instead, the best way to freeze bread if you don't plan to use it all at once is to freeze the individual slices on a sheet tray. Then you can store them all together in a bag or box in the freezer and only use what you need.