What’s The Best Way To Store Coffee Beans
Mccarthy says there are four elements you must account for in order to maintain the freshness of coffee beans: air, humidity, heat, and lightspecifically sunlight.
“Once a bag of coffee is opened, the beans can begin to become stale within just a few days, developing a flat, bitter taste and an unpleasant aroma,” says Mccarthy. “The best container in which to store your coffee beans would be airtight and opaque one with a one-way valve or a vacuum seal would be ideal.”
Walker agrees, and says they should also be stored “away from heat, light, and moisture.”
So, how exactly do air, humidity, heat, and light affect coffee beans? It’s quite simple actually: they all cause the beans to become stale.
“This container should be kept in a cool, dark location. For example, a cabinet located away from the stove and any other heat-generating appliances,” says Mccarthy.
The Arguments For Storing Coffee Beans In The Freezer
Advocates for coffee bean storage using the freezer rally behind one main point: if done correctly, you can preserve the life of your coffee beans.
As you just read, doing this properly is not easy, but Ill show you how it can be done.
If you have more beans than you can use in the next two or three weeks, freezing can preserve the flavor and fresh qualities of those beans if you store them in a truly airtight container.
This disqualifies the bag that your beans come in when you buy them. Youll need to repackage your beans into something else.
Store them in smaller batches – enough for one week or so. When you pull the beans out, allow them to thaw to room temperature completely before opening the container. If you open the container prematurely, youll get that nasty, coffee killing condensation.
The Best 7 Tips On How To Keep Coffee Beans Fresh
Coffee is one of the most popular beverages in the world and the actual Coffee beans are seeds of coffee plants. The seeds are processed to coffee beans that are subsequently roasted to produce coffee of different types. It is said that the best tasting coffee is the one thats freshly roasted, ground, and brewed. The characteristic flavor of coffee is due to the roasting process.
To enjoy the best cup of coffee, you need to ensure that you only use fresh coffee since, coffee is a perishable commodity. Coffee beans start losing their freshness once they are roasted and once coffee starts losing its freshness, its natural aromas and flavors are diminished. So, it goes without saying that the better you store your coffee beans the better your coffee will be.
If you store your coffee beans the right way, they can stay good for about one month after roasting. Ground coffee typically lasts for 1 to 2 weeks after roasting . The difference is due to the fact that the surface area of ground coffee is much greater than that of coffee beans. It means that ground coffee is more susceptible to light, heat, moisture, and air, which are the 4 greatest enemies of fresh coffee.
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The Best Containers For Storing Coffee Beans
Tupperware containers and glass containers are not fully airtight, and transparent containers expose coffee beans to light.
There are airtightcoffee canistersdesigned specifically to preserve coffee beans. Remember to always choose an opaque container that wont let light filter through.
You can also use vacuum sealer bags, which allow you to seal your beans in a multi-layered plastic bag, then suck out the remaining oxygen through an air valve. These bags tend to be transparent, though, so youll want to make sure its stored away from any light sources.
What Do I Recommend For Proper Coffee Bean Storage
I dont store coffee beans in the fridge because I usually buy a large bag, and grind the beans daily. Im not tempted to put the beans in the refrigerator, because of the risk of creating additional stress on the flavors. I do need to buy a decent coffee can or ceramic jar to protect the coffee from light and put the beans in a cupboard away from the sun streaming through the kitchen window.
No storage jars with clear glass there. Dont keep your beans in a glass jar light gets in! In fact, if the jar is big enough, just put the entire bag with beans inside INTO the jar. Dont disturb the carbon that has sheathed the beans at the bottom of the bag! That is my current recommendation for storage for short term. When you pour the beans into the jar, the carbon escapes, and is replaced with oxygen leading to increased oxidation and a shorter shelf-life for your coffee!
Id also recommend that you purchase your beans and try to use them up within about 10-14 days at the very most. If you cant, you may find that you need to buy smaller quantities of coffee. While this cuts down some of the savings you might make by buying in bulk, your taste buds will thank you a great deal when you buy less and use proper coffee bean storing methods.
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The Fundamentals Of Coffee Storage
Instead of diving straight into the deep end and talking about storing your coffee beans or ground coffee, here are some key factors that you need to understand about coffee. Coffee doesnât like light, air, humidity and extreme temperatures. Itâs important that you keep your coffee protected from those four factors if you want the freshest coffee in the morning.
Itâs a good idea to look for coffee beans that are packaged in a sealed bag that features a freshness valve. Fresh roasted coffee releases CO2, if the beans are stored in a normal bag then too much carbon dioxide could be released, and the coffeesâ freshness could deteriorate rapidly. The freshness valve feature lets CO2 out, but stops oxygen getting into the bag. This helps the beans remain fresh for a longer period.
Ground coffee is a harder product to keep fresh as it loses its quality much quicker than coffee. If you arenât a big coffee drinker and you donât have a cup every so often, weâd advise that you buy coffee in small volumes as it loses its freshness quickly. You could always invest in a coffee grinder and grind your coffee when needed for a high-quality cup.
How To Ensure The Extra Coffee Does Not Go Bad
You might have made a little too much coffee in the morning, and you are reluctant to pour it down the drain. You can do the following to preserve it.
Pour the leftover coffee in ice cube trays and freeze it. You can then use these cubes in gravies to give off a brown color. Pour the cool coffee in a blender add a scoop of vanilla ice cream, ice, a teaspoon of vanilla, and milk. Blend everything together to get a coffee milkshake that you can enjoy throughout the day. Use your prepared coffee instead of water in your chocolate or vanilla cake recipes to achieve a mocha flavor.
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How To Choose A Coffee Canister Buyers Guide
Does this seem like a lot of information at once? Many people dont even know how important a good coffee canister is, which is why all of this can seem overwhelming.
Heres a little list of what makes the best coffee canister:
- It should be completely sealed it doesnt always have to be a vacuum sealed coffee container, but it shouldnt allow any air to enter when the lid is closed.
- It tracks coffees freshness best canisters feature a date wheel that will enable you to keep track of when your coffee is about it expire.
- Its compact and versatile a good coffee canister is easy to use, clean and handle. It allows you to store as much coffee as you need, both whole bean and roasted. These can also serve as best airtight food containers.
How Long Has It Bean
The date of roasting & packaging determines the expiry date, youll see this clearly printed or stamped on the bag or can. Unless the package is actually opened, it is likely the beans will still be in reasonable condition.
Exposure to the M-A-S-H factors will cause deterioration in the quality of the coffee. Extreme moisture may offer the opportunity for mold to grow as well. Nice!
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Buy Fresh Coffee Purchasing Tips
It all starts from buying, no matter, how well you store you coffee, you wont see any flavor, aroma and energy in your cup of java, if your beans arent fresh enough.
Whether youre buying at the grocery store or directly from a roaster, you must need to know what to look on a bag of coffee.
- Dont buy whole beans out of large open barrels in your local grocery store, the ones have been exposed oxygen and UV rays, and contaminated from the hands of children.
- The roast date on bag of coffee shouldnt be longer than two weeks. Older than this stage, the beans begin to lose its natural flavor and your brewed coffee will taste like cardboard. However, if you dont see any date, just put those beans back to shelf.
- Its all about transparency, a great roaster provides as much information about roasting locations and farms as possible. So, always make sure, your coffee should be roasted near to where you resides or are traveling. However, in case your coffee bag doesnt give such details, chances are its probably not that much great.
When I say bag, it means Im talking specifically about bag and not other type of coffee beans.
Remember, buy only as much coffee as youll drink in a week or two. Buying in bulk wont be doing you any favor in storage and taste departments, instead its flavor and aroma will be negatively affected over time.
Can You Store Coffee In The Fridge Or Freezer
In an airtight bag, ground coffee can last for up to a month in the freezer, but two weeks will typically be the max that any good coffee stays fresh in the fridge. While you certainly can put it there with the right materials, it’s better to opt for the right storage devices and the pantry instead.
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When Does Coffee Start To Go Bad
Now you know how to store your coffee, but how long will it stay fresh with the best method?
Unfortunately, its hard to have a cup of coffee at its freshness peak. Coffee starts to lose freshness right after roasting. The freshest your coffee will be is right after roasting and for the first few days after. Check the roast date on your coffee bag and consider buying directly from a coffee roaster or even roasting your coffee beans at home.
The Short AnswerWhole bean coffee wont go stale for about one month. Ground coffee will be stale in a week or two.
Here are some other interesting questions a lot of coffee enthusiasts have:
Storing The Fine Grinds
It can be your last option. Otherwise, you hardly find someone who stores the ground coffee beans for a long time. First pro tip, do not store it for more than a week. Buy the fine grinds for one weeks stock only. Coming home, transfer the beans to airtight and opaque containers as usual. But divide it into small airtight containers. It will ensure that you do not expose much coffee to air at a time.
Store the ground coffee at room temperature and avoid storing it in the freezer.
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Ground Coffee Vs Whole Beans
Ground coffee, with its higher proportion of surface area, goes stale more quickly than whole beans. If you have the time, energy, and equipment, grind your own coffee beans each morning. If you’re not ready to take on that level of commitment, you can still have delicious fresh coffee if you use whole beans within a month of roasting and ground beans within two weeks of roasting.
How You Should Freeze Your Coffee Beans
There are basically only two requirements for successfully freezing coffee beans you should get the beans to an airtight container and there should be no air and as little as possible. So you have two options vacuum sealing or some sort of tube or container. Vacuum sealing requires some plastic “bags” and of course a vacuum sealer which makes that option a little bit more expensive.
I have used these tubes to freeze my coffee. They are pretty handy as you can fit about 20 grams of coffee in them .
The trick is to fill the tube as full as possible. First I fill the tube and seal it but it’s not yet completely full as there is some air between the beans and they could fit even tighter. So I give the tube a good shake to get the beans even tighter and add the few missing beans.
Of course you want to know what coffee have you frozen – write on a masking tape / painter’s tape the details from the coffee. If you want to be even more detailed, you could write the perfect recipe that you have used so you have it ready in two years when you take the coffee from the freezer.
Yes, you read correctly – two years.
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Whole Bean Vs Ground Coffee
Ground coffee will go stale at a much faster rate than whole beans, because of the much greater surface area. Grinding your coffee at home just prior to brewing is a very important step for maximizing coffee freshness. If you arent able to grind coffee at home, buying smaller amounts of coffee more frequently is your best plan.
Coffee Beans Are Perishable
Coffee beans are a natural food product, like ripe fruit or freshly baked bread. And like all natural food products coffee beans have a shelf life.
And the sad truth is, that shelf life is about a month. But the even sadder truth is: if youre not careful, you can reduce that shelf life by half, or more.
So lets begin by looking at what youre fighting against, and then well give you a set of strategies for keeping your beans fresh.
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Option : Mylar Bags With Oxygen Absorbers
The best long-term storage method for coffee is sealed Mylar bags with oxygen absorbers. Mylar is a metallic-looking material that is impervious to gases. When you put an oxygen absorber into a bag and then seal it, the coffee is protected from oxygen, humidity, and light. Instant coffee can last for 25+ years this way.
If you want to store coffee beans in Mylar though, theres an important caveat: they must be unroasted green coffee beans. The reason for this is that the roasting process causes the natural oils in the coffee to start breaking down. By contrast, green coffee beans wont deteriorate and can last 20+ years in Mylar bags with oxygen absorbers.
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How To Store Ground Coffee Beans
Most people love the scent and taste of coffee. Coffee is part of most peoples daily routines, and in a day they would feel incomplete without it.
Coffee beans are seeds of the coffee plants, which are the source of coffee. Mostly found inside the red or purple fruit, which is referred to as a cherry, and they are mostly dried to increase their life span besides preserving the seeds scent and flavor.
The fruits, coffee cherries, also known as the coffee berries, contain two stones, which are beans with their flat sides together.
Ironically, many people never think about ways of storing coffee, and they end up using strange theories that are wrong. These practices can destroy or damage the coffee despite the efforts.
The main thing that destroys coffee is prolonged exposure to air. This explains why factories opt for the vacuum sealing their coffee. Air damages coffee in ways indicated below:
- First, the absorption of moisture out of the air that gets its way into the coffee through openings.
- Secondly, it is the loss of moisture in the air. High temperatures accelerate the mechanisms of spoilage of coffee.
Coffee should not be accepted into storage unless it meets the minimum criteria of coffee storage other than that it should be consumed with immediate effect.
The stock rotation routine should also be followed in that the coffee that was stored earlier should be consumed first.
1. Use airtight containers
2. Purchase the needed amount
4. Freezing the Coffee Beans
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How Important Is The Selection Of The Right Container To Store The Whole Coffee Beans
The necessary attributes of your storage container need to meet the following criteria:
- We would suggest you to Select containers made of a non-reactive material. You can use containers made of glass, ceramics, or non-reactive metals too. Stainless steel containers are a good option also. Coffee beans do not stain the container with oil as they do in plastic containers.
- What can be more important for a coffee container than an airtight seal? Air is one of the five spoilers, so without any delay, look for an airtight storage container. It will keep the freshness of your coffee locked for a long time.
- Do you also like to see the fine grind of your coffee beans on your kitchen countertop? But, this lovely sight can harm your coffee. Find an opaque container to protect your coffee from light sources.
Containers For Coffee Storage
Before I get into what is the best container, give some thought to where you are going store your coffee.
Coffee does best in a dry, airtight container. When choosing a container and location for your favorite blend, be sure to avoid moisture, heat, and light.
Now, when looking for a container to store coffee there are just a few things to look out for. Ideally, Look for containers that are not see through or made of glass especially if you plain on leaving the container on a counter top where sunlight or other types of light could be hitting it.
In this case look for one that is made of ceramic or a container that is non-reactive to metals. If you can store the coffee in a cool dark place like a kitchen cabinet, you could get glass container as it wont be subject to sunlight or heat.
After that look for container that has an airtight gasket to prevent any oxygen in the container. Again making the point that oxygen is the enemy of coffee.
Lastly look for a container that is either ceramic or is non reactive as this will ensure that any light hitting the container will affect ti.
With all this in mind, I would recommend that you look into a container such as the Coffee Gator or Friis Coffee Vault that you can find on Amazon or maybe even locally. Your local roaster, where you are hopefully buying your coffee may sell containers as well.
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