How Long Does Bread Last?

by Susan Grey on June 28, 2019

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How Long Does Bread Last? There are different types of bread, each with its own shelf life. Generally, bread lasts approximately 5-7 days past the ‘best by’ date before going bad but can last up to a month or more if preserved properly. 
Bread tends to be given a ‘best by’ date opposed to an ‘expiry’ date. A ‘best by’ date does not indicate that the food is unsafe to eat, it just means that the item may not have the same flavor and freshness. 
Refrigerating and freezing bread can extend its lifespan. However, it is not recommended as the bread can lose its nutritional value, taste, and turn stale faster.
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Different Types of Bread and Their Life Span 

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Packaged Bread

Depending on the temperature properly stored packaged bread can last past the ‘best by’ date (link). 
  • Room temperature 68 degrees F (20 degrees C): 5-7 days past the ‘best by’.
  • Humid and moist climate: 2-3 days past the ‘best by’.
  • Cool climate: 4-5 days past the ‘best by’.
  • Cold climate: 5-7 days past the ‘best by’.
How Long Does Packaged Bread Last in the Refrigerator?
  • Packaged bread can lasts 2-3 days in the refrigerator.
If you are only storing your bread for a couple of days, a paper bag works fine. It allows the bread to breathe and prevents moisture build up. 
If you are intending on storing your bread for longer, use a Ziploc bag.
How Long Does Packaged Bread Last in the Freezer?
  • Packaged bread can last 6 months in the freezer and still be safe to eat.

Sourdough Bread

  • Freshly baked sourdough bread can last 5-8 days at room temperature.
  • Packaged it will last 4-5 days before going bad (link).   
Unlike most bread that contain commercial baker’s yeast, this bread uses ‘wild yeast’ and lactic acid bacteria to help the dough rise. Because of the different ingredients used to bake it, it has a different shelf life.
To prolong the shelf life of homemade sourdough bread at room temperature, you need to cool it before storing and then place it in a plastic storage bag, wrap it in foil or store it in a breadbox.
How Long Does Sourdough Bread Last in the Refrigerator?
  • Usually 2-3 days before going stale but remains safe to eat for a couple of weeks or even months depending on how it is packaged.
How Long Does Sourdough Bread Last in the Freezer?
  • This loaf can last up to 3 months in the freezer and be safe to eat beyond that period. 
To store and preserve, cut your bread into half, wrap in foil or pack in a clean, dry zip bag and freeze. Properly packaged and kept at 32 degrees F (0 degrees C) constantly, can remain safe to eat indefinitely. 

Bread Rolls

  • Bread rolls can last 7-9 days at room temperature without going bad. 
Bread rolls last relatively longer compared to most other bread because lesser quantities of ingredients are used and they are cooked for a longer time (link).
At room temperature, bread rolls should be stored in the original package to minimize moisture and prevent it from going bad fast.
How Long Do Bread Rolls Last in the Refrigerator?
  • Refrigerating bread rolls can help them last for 3 months or more.
To properly store your bread rolls in the fridge and maintain the best quality for the longest time, place them in a heavy-duty freezer bag or wrap them in thick foil. Ensure that the temperature of your refrigerator is constant during the preservation period.
How Long Do Bread Rolls Last in the Freezer?
  • Bread rolls can last for over 3 months or indefinitely in your freezer if they are stored and preserved properly.
Place your rolls in a freezer bag or wrap them in foil if you want them to retain quality for a longer period of time (link).

Rye Bread

  • Properly packaged rye bread can last 5-7 days or more at room temperature depending on the packaging and storage method (link).  
Rye bread is not only one of the healthiest bread options out there, but it also has a longer shelf life compared to most other options on the market.  
To package and store your rye bread properly, keep it tightly closed in its original package and store it in a cool, dry place. You can also store it in a large sandwich bag or wrap it in foil to increase its shelf life.
How Long Does Rye Bread Last in the Refrigerator?
  • Rye bread can last 3-4 days or more before going stale. 
How Long Does Rye Bread Last in the Freezer?
  • If you must, rye bread can last 3-5 months in the freezer or indefinitely if stored properly.  
To properly store your rye bread in the freezer, ensure the temperature is constantly at 32 degrees F (0 degrees C) and package your bread in a high-density sealable bag, or wrap it in thick foil.
 

Methods to Make Your Bread Last Longer

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The three main methods of making your bread last longer include freezing, refrigeration and storing in a breadbox.

Freezing

As mentioned previously, frozen bread is not highly recommended because it can taste stale and lose its nutritional value.
It is, however, the most effective method of storing bread if you intend to use it over a long period of time.
Properly stored and packaged bread can last indefinitely in your freezer and still remain edible. The taste and texture may change over time because of the freezing conditions.
How to Freeze: 
To properly freeze your bread, package it in an airtight bag or wrap it in thick foil and then freeze. It is important to ensure that the temperatures in your freezer remain constant throughout the storage period to increase your bread’s shelf life.

Refrigeration

Like freezing, refrigeration is highly effective to extend the life span of your loaf but also unrecommended. Storing your bread in the refrigerator for a long time causes it to turn stale and lose its nutritional value.
Storing and preserving it in the fridge can increase its shelf life by months depending on how it is stored.
How to Refrigerate:
To properly store your bread, you can pack it in a plastic bag, airtight container or wrap foil around it. The temperatures in your refrigerator should be constant to increase shelf life.

Bread Box

Breadboxes boxes remain the most effective method of preserving bread and is our recommendation for storage.
Breadboxes help bread retain its quality and other characteristics like a moist crumb, a crispy interior, and delectable chew. This is because breadboxes allow your bread to breathe and moisture to escape, leaving your bread softer compared to storing it in a paper or plastic bag. 
(link).

 

 

Interested in other baking and bread related articles?
Check these out:
Top 10 Bread Slicers of 2019
Buckwheat Bread
Understanding and Using a Bread Lame
What is Meal Bread?
How Many Slices in a Loaf of Bread?
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