The proper storing of coffee is something most of us just do wrong. But thanks to a few coffee junkie friends I’ve found out how to keep coffee fresh for a long time and it all starts with the beans!
For purposes of this Tip we’ll break coffee down into three phases of life:
- Raw or “green” beans
- Roasted Beans
- Ground Coffee
The further down you go the more quickly beans will loose freshness. Raw beans will stay fresh almost indefinitely, roasted beans for about 2 weeks if properly stored, and grounds should be consumed right away.
Storing Raw Beans
If you’re into roasting keep the beans in their raw state until you’re ready to roast them, grind them and drink them!
Keeping them in a cool dark location in the bag or in an air tight container is idea.
Storing Roasted Beans
If you buy pre-roasted beans, as most of us do, then keep them in an air-tight container. I prefer glass or ceramic which seals completely. Don’t grind the beans until you’re ready to make coffee.
You can find a good coffee grinder in your local store or online for $15 – $20.
Beans will stay fresh in this state for about two weeks if properly stored.
While ground coffee is the most convenient it’s not going to be as fresh as grinding your own. I never buy ground coffee for this reason. If you choose to buy ground coffee then keep it sealed and don’t keep it around too long. Freshness starts to decline in a matter of hours to a couple days depending on how it’s stored.
How NOT to store coffee:
The single most common mistake is keeping coffee in the refrigerator or freezer. The problem is that coffee will absorb moisture and the flavors in that moisture, so whatever flavors are floating around in your refrigerator can easily end up in your coffee. So unless you want fish & broccoli flavored coffee, keep it out of the fridge!
The freezer isn’t much better but if you absolutely must by coffee in large quantity and need to store it for a prolonged period of time then you can break up the coffee into individual air tight containers and then freeze it, so you can take out only what you need each time. Once it thaws out don’t refreeze it, only freeze and thaw it out once to keep the beans form absorbing too much moisture from the freezer.
I love the smell of coffee in the morning and I hope this will help you keep your coffee fresh and tasty!
Learn something new every day!