Coffee is a familiar drink to help you stay awake and provide energy for a long day. In addition to the preparation method, the preservation stage is also an important factor to make a delicious cup of coffee. Should you keep ground coffee in the fridge?
How long can ground coffee be stored?
A good “standard” coffee is defined as when it is selected from clean, ripe red coffee berries, then the coffee is roasted and ground into powder and used immediately. But that delicious flavor can usually be kept for at most 2 years, with closed, well-ventilated and moisture-proof storage conditions.
If you do not know how to preserve, coffee powder can only be kept for 14 days. After this period of time, coffee will gradually lose its original delicious taste, and nutrients will also be lost.
Should you keep ground coffee in the fridge?
Storing ground coffee in the refrigerator or freezer is generally considered safe but it is not an ideal solution.
The freezer can sometimes get humid. Moisture and freshly roasted coffee do not mix. Also, the frozen and defrosted foods can break down the oils and, therefore, disrupt the flavor. The beans and ground coffee are both oily, so freezing can cause problems with these oils and reduce flavor.
Storing coffee in the fridge is even worse, as your ground coffee or beans can start to absorb the flavors of other foods in the fridge. Most refrigerators are very humid while ground coffee does not need refrigeration.
Tips for storing ground coffee in the freezer
Sometimes you can’t drink all that coffee at once and you want to keep your coffee for a few more months before brewing. The best thing to do is leave it intact in your pantry. In case you must use the freezer, here are some storage tips.
- Only store coffee in the freezer, if absolutely necessary
- Do not open ground coffee before storing it in the freezer
- Your ground coffee can be stored in the freezer for 6-12 months
- Take a ziplock freezer bag and place the unopened bag in it. With bags with valves, this extra step prevents potential moisture from entering
- Thaw coffee at room temperature for about an hour before brewing. This allows the oils to heat up
- Never defrost coffee in the microwave
- After defrosting, do not refreeze the coffee. Instead, use it within a week
Further reading: Best Top-Freezer Refrigerator without Ice Maker
Does ground coffee go bad?
With time, the coffee looks the same. You may sometimes wonder if your coffee go bad. Actually, the answer depends on how you define “going bad.”
Usually, about two weeks after opening, it loses its flavor, but is still safe to drink. This degradation occurs because the beans or ground coffee have been exposed to oxygen, causing the coffee to go stale.
In fact, when coffee beans are roasted, oxygen begins to break down chemical compounds like carbohydrates, oils, and amino acids. Therefore, your ground coffee will go bad over time.
Why does your ground coffee perish?
The most harmful element for coffee is the oxygen in the air. This explains why all coffee packaging is vacuum sealed.
Air and oxygen work to spoil coffee through a few different mechanisms. First, it is moisture absorption from the air and second, moisture is lost in the air; and both are accelerated by higher temperatures.
Oxygen and oxidation can play an important role in determining the shelf life of ground coffee. Oxidation is the process by which oxygen pulls electrons away from another molecule. This is usually metal related, but it happens with the longevity of the coffee. These molecules, with unequal numbers of electrons, become unstable and begin to react with other molecules around them. Being called free radicals, these volatile compounds are the root cause of browning, aging, rust, and in the coffee world, staleness.
How can you tell if ground coffee is bad or rancid?
To make sure your coffee is still good to use, you need to:
First, use your sense of smell. If it is fragrant, it will still taste when you use it. If it doesn’t have much of an aroma, that means your coffee may have gone stale and may not taste as good. However, you can still brew and use it if you really want to.
Also, be sure to use your eyes. If you see mold, which can occur in rare cases when moisture enters your coffee, be sure to remove and do not use it.
What is the best way to store ground coffee?
How to properly store powdered coffee is extremely important because for coffee, the most important thing is the smell and taste. Air, moisture, temperature and light are the four main factors that affect the quality of coffee.
Ground coffee has the best quality in the first 2 weeks from the date of production. Therefore, when buying powdered coffee, you should look at the production time indicated on the package.
For home-ground coffee powder, you should note the date of coffee grinding on the box and use it only for about 2-4 weeks from the time of grinding, to get delicious and safe coffee cups.
Do not leave powdered coffee in the air
Ground coffee left in the air will lose its inherent flavor and cause moldy conditions. Therefore, to ensure the quality and taste of coffee, we should store it in a sealed jar or bag and place it in a cool place. Do not leave the powdered coffee in the air.
In terms of storage, your cabinet or pantry are typically good places to store coffee.
Coffee powder should not be stored in plastic containers as this can reduce the aroma and quality. Depending on where you live, the air will be humid or dry. A metal or plastic box lets in dry or moist air every time you open the lid. Then that air is trapped with the beans or ground coffee. This can lead to hardness, staleness and loss of flavor over time.
Instead, you should use glass containers or zip bags. These tools do not cause unpleasant odors to the coffee, but also prevent air from entering, creating oxidation.
If using a zip bag, use a new one and squeeze it before you’re ready to close it, creating a vacuum-like effect. Any container is fine as long as you can minimize your exposure to sunlight, humidity and, above all, air.
If you choose to store ground coffee in the freezer, store it in an airtight container. While this will cause the coffee to lose some of its flavor over time, it will help limit the two-week expiration date and extend its shelf life to about a month.
Air, moisture, temperature and light are the four main factors that affect the quality of coffee. So, you should store your coffee in a jar, sealed box or zip bag and place it in a cool, dry place, away from heat and sunlight.
How to extend the shelf life of ground coffee
To prolong the freshness of your coffee, you should buy beans and grind them yourself. With an unopened package and stored in a dry place, coffee beans can be stored for about nine months. In the freezer, the shelf life of coffee beans can be extended by six months.
The great tip is that you can grind as much coffee as you want at any time. So basically, your roasted coffee beans can last much longer than pre-ground coffee.
With all of this, you can extend the shelf life of your roasted or ground coffee for quite some time.
How to keep your coffee super fresh?
To enjoy the best, freshest, strongest coffee, here are a few more tips.
- Choose freshly roasted coffee if possible. The fresher, the better.
- Buy from a coffee retailer using a valved, vacuum sealed, heat-resistant, foil-lined bag. These bags help the coffee release air naturally without letting in stale air or moisture. They also reflect sunlight to avoid fading or destroying the essential oil.
- Keep your coffee in a dry and relatively cool environment such as your cupboards, pantries or even kitchen counters away from windows.
- Each time you open the valve bag, get the coffee you need, then carefully close the bag. You can gently squeeze the excess air out as an extra precaution. That’s what van helps with.
- Buy fresh coffee and drink within a few weeks of opening the pouch for best results.
Best ground coffee you should try
1. Lavazza ¡TIERRA! Brasile 100% Arabica Whole Bean Espresso
2. AmazonFresh Colombia Ground Coffee, Medium Roast
3. Starbucks Ground Coffee—Dark Roast Coffee
4. Dunkin’ Original
5. Four Sigmatic Adaptogen Organic Medium Roast Instant Coffee
6. Hills Bros Instant Double Mocha Cappuccino Mix
7. Trung Nguyen – G7 3 In 1 Instant Coffee
8. Maxwell House, International Cafe Iced Latte
In short, you should not keep ground coffee in the fridge. This method does not preserve the flavor of the coffee but reduces the coffee quality.
The low temperature in the refrigerator will condense the essential oil from the coffee, making the coffee lose its inherent delicious flavor. In addition, ground coffee stored in the refrigerator will absorb all the odors from the refrigerator, making it lose the scent and also change the taste in an undesirable way.
It is best to keep coffee in a clean, dry jar with a tight lid, place in a cool place and out of direct sunlight. You need to close the lid tightly after each use.