Did you know approximately 62% of Americans consume coffee every day? The demand for coffee is higher than ever, making the need to understand how to store it properly a popular topic.
People use varying techniques of coffee storage. Some use the freezer, while others might use a tightly sealed canister.
There are many schools of thought on the best way to store coffee, but one method gaining popularity is keeping it in the fridge.
Please keep reading to learn what happens when you put coffee in the fridge and whether or not it is the best storage method for your beans.
4 Reasons Why People Store Coffee in the Fridge
You need your coffee to make it through the week. Keeping a fresh pot around can always be challenging if you drink a lot of coffee.
Many people choose to store their coffee in the fridge so it will last longer.
Below are four reasons why people put coffee in the fridge.
1. To Keep It Fresh
Coffee beans can start to lose their flavor after about two weeks. To keep your coffee tasting fresh, you must find a way to prolong its shelf life.
Storing coffee in the fridge can help it stay fresh for up to six weeks. The cool temperature slows the oxidation process, making coffee beans go bad.
2. To Preserve the Flavor
Coffee can absorb flavors from other foods easily. Storing coffee in the fridge can help preserve its flavor and prevent it from absorbing unwanted tastes.
However, you must ensure your fridge is clean and free of strong-smelling foods.
Alternatively, you can store your coffee beans in a tightly sealed container. This will also help keep the flavor preserved.
3. To Extend Its Shelf Life
If you want to keep your coffee beans fresh for as long as possible, storing them in the fridge is a good option.
Coffee beans can last up to six weeks in the fridge, whereas they will only last for two weeks at room temperature.
4. To Prevent Mold
Mold can grow on coffee beans quickly, especially if stored in a warm or humid environment.
If you live in a hot climate or your kitchen is often humid, it is best to store your coffee in the fridge.
The cool temperature of the fridge will prevent mold from growing on your beans.
What Happens When You Put Coffee in the Fridge?
When you put coffee in the fridge, it will change the beans in a few ways. The main change is that it will make them harder because the oils in coffee beans will solidify in the cold temperature of the fridge.
As a result, your coffee grinds might be coarser when you use beans stored in the fridge. You may need to adjust your coffee grinder to accommodate this change.
The ideal grind size for coffee beans stored in the fridge is a coarse grind.
How Does Storing Coffee in the Fridge Help in Preservation?
When you store coffee in the fridge, it will last longer because the cool temperature slows down the oxidation process. Coffee can easily oxidize because it is a highly volatile food.
Oxidation contributes to coffee beans going bad, and it causes them to lose their flavor.
Coffee oxidizes when exposed to oxygen in the air. The process accelerates with heat, light, and moisture.
All of these factors cause coffee beans to go bad faster. Storing coffee in the fridge helps slow down the process of oxidation and preserve the flavor of your beans for a longer time.
What Temperatures Are Ideal for Fridge Coffee Storage?
The ideal fridge temperature for storing coffee is between 35 and 38 degrees Fahrenheit. If your fridge is set any lower, your coffee beans may start to freeze, and the flavor will change.
On the other hand, if your fridge is set any higher than this, your beans may start to degrade more quickly.
You should also store your coffee in an airtight container to prevent it from absorbing any unwanted flavors from your fridge.
If you use coffee pods, you can store them in the fridge for up to two weeks. When using the fridge to store coffee pods, you also need to keep them in an airtight container or storage bag.
Can You Freeze Coffee?
You can freeze coffee, but it is not the best way to store your beans. When you freeze coffee, the water in the beans expands and can break down the cell walls.
As a result, your coffee may taste watery and have a weaker flavor. Additionally, the texture of the beans might change, and they will no longer be as crisp.
If you must freeze your coffee, ensure to use an airtight container, so the beans are not exposed to too much moisture. Coffee stored in the freezer can last for up to six months.
When ready to use your frozen coffee, thaw it in the fridge overnight. Do not thaw coffee at room temperature, as this can cause the beans to degrade more quickly.
Is It Safe To Store Your Coffee in the Fridge?
Coffee is a versatile drink that you can enjoy hot or cold. If you prefer your coffee on the colder side, you may wonder if it’s safe to put coffee in the fridge.
The answer is yes, but you should keep a few things in mind to ensure your coffee stays fresh.
Whether hot or cold, coffee is best stored in an airtight container away from strong-smelling foods. You should also use it within two weeks of brewing for the best flavor.
With these storage tips in mind, enjoy your coffee however you like it!
What Happens When You Put Hot Coffee in the Fridge?
A hot cup of coffee can be a great way to start the day. However, in a hurry, you may consider putting your hot coffee in the fridge so it cools down faster.
It can be a great solution if you are short on time, but it is not the best way to store your coffee.
For people who love iced coffee but don’t like to add ice cubes, putting hot coffee in the fridge is a great way to have iced coffee without watering it down.
However, when putting your hot coffee in the fridge, there are some safety considerations to take into account.
Choose a Suitable Container
Do not put hot coffee in a flimsy paper cup as it is not designed to withstand extreme temperature changes. Instead, pour your coffee into a thermal mug or a glass jar with a lid.
This can help prevent spills and insulate your coffee, so it cools down more slowly. It’s important to consider inert containers to avoid any coffee-to-container reactions.
Leave Some Room at the Top
Do not fill your container to the top, as hot coffee can expand and may cause your container to overflow. To avoid this, leave a few inches of space at the top of your container.
Stir Before Putting it in the fridge
Before putting your coffee in the fridge, give it a good stir. Stirring can help distribute the heat evenly and prevent your coffee from cooling down too quickly in one area.
It will also help prevent any hot spots that could scald your tongue.
Don’t Put it in the Fridge for More Than Two Hours
Do not put your coffee in the fridge for more than two hours as it can start to develop an off-flavor.
If you want your coffee to cool down faster, consider placing it in the freezer for 30–60 minutes. Just be sure to stir before you drink it, so the flavor is evenly distributed.
If you’re planning to drink your coffee within 24 hours, it’s best to keep it stored in a sealed container at room temperature.
Coffee is best when consumed fresh, so try to drink it within two weeks of brewing.
Maintain a Good Distance Between Your Coffee and Other Items in the Fridge
You should store your coffee in the fridge, away from strong-smelling foods. Coffee is a very porous food and can absorb unwanted smells from other items in your fridge.
This can cause your coffee to develop an off-flavor.
To avoid this, store your coffee in a sealed container at the back of your fridge. Alternatively, you can keep your coffee in the freezer, where it is less likely to absorb unwanted smells.
4 Alternative Ways To Store Your Coffee
If you’re not keen on storing your coffee in the fridge, you can try a few alternative storage methods.
Use an Airtight Container
You can store coffee in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks. This is the best way to store coffee if you plan on drinking it within the next few days.
Airtight containers keep oxygen and moisture out, which can help prevent your coffee from going stale.
You can also use oxygen absorbers in your airtight container to further prolong the shelf life of your coffee.
Oxygen absorbers are small packets that absorb oxygen and help keep your coffee fresh for longer.
To use them, simply place them in your airtight container along with your coffee. You can get this product from most home goods stores or online.
Keep Your Coffee in a Cool, Dark Place
You can also store your coffee in a cool, dark place like a cupboard or pantry. Just be sure to keep it in an airtight container to prevent it from absorbing any unwanted smells.
Storing in a dark place can help prolong the freshness of your coffee because light can cause coffee to go stale.
The storage time will vary depending on the coffee bean and the roast type. Lighter roasts have a shorter shelf life than darker roasts.
You need to consume light-roasted coffee within 2–3 weeks and dark-roasted coffee within 3–4 weeks.
If you live in a warm climate, it’s best to store your coffee in the fridge or freezer to prevent it from going stale.
Use a Vacuum-Sealed Storage Bag
If you want to store your coffee for longer, you can try vacuum-sealing it in a storage bag. Vacuum-sealing coffee can help extend its shelf life by keeping oxygen and moisture out.
The storage option is ideal if you want to keep your coffee fresh for a few months. Just be sure to write the date on the bag.
It’s important to use a food-grade storage bag designed for vacuum sealing. You can find these bags at most kitchen stores or online.
Freeze Your Coffee
You can also freeze your coffee for long-term storage. However, you need to use an airtight container or storage bag to prevent freezer burn.
When you’re ready to drink your coffee, thaw it overnight in the fridge or at room temperature.
Avoid using the microwave to thaw your coffee, as this can cause it to taste watery.
Storing coffee in the fridge is safe and can help extend its shelf life. Just be sure to keep it in an airtight container away from strong-smelling foods.
You should also consume it within two weeks for the best flavor.
Whether you’re storing coffee for commercial purposes or at home, understanding what happens when you put coffee in the fridge is important.
Using the above tips can help keep your coffee fresh for longer.
You can also try alternative storage methods like using a vacuum-sealed bag or freezing your coffee. With proper storage, you can enjoy your coffee for weeks or even months after it’s roasted.
If you’re still uncertain about how to store your coffee, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and consume it within a week or two.