There are many factors that influence whether a cup of coffee is delicious and of great quality. We all know that the raw material, that is, the coffee beans, must be excellent and have the best properties from its cultivation process. The brewing method is also a key element for a great result.
However, there is another factor that may seem unimportant, but that is fundamental: the way in which we store the coffee. It does not matter if we have the best brand at home, if we do not store the coffee beans correctly, the drink can be completely spoiled.
For this reason, to make sure you can always have the best coffee at home, this time we will tell you everything you should know to keep the coffee properly.
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Why should you store coffee correctly?
As with many things, even if they are of excellent quality, we must handle them appropriately to ensure that they will have a long lifespan. In the case of coffee, just as it is very important to take into account the cleanliness of the coffee maker so that the flavor is not affected, so is the way in which we store it.
When coffee is roasted, it changes its chemical composition and acquires properties different from those it had when it was green. It is at this stage that it not only gets its characteristic aroma and taste but also that it becomes more vulnerable.
The worst enemies of coffee are oxygen, light, moisture, and heat. When the bean is green, it is also susceptible to these, but it lasts longer and is not as affected as the roasted bean.
Not storing the coffee correctly results in it being damaged much faster and also in the loss of the aromas and flavors of the beans. This will result in a tasteless drink or one with very unpleasant flavors and notes.
Should I keep coffee beans or ground coffee?
Coffee is much better when freshly ground, therefore, it is more advisable to store it in beans. This way, it lasts much longer, retains aroma and flavor better, and is fresher.
Thus, you can grind as many beans as you want with a coffee grinder before making the coffee in the machine you have at home. Keep in mind that it is best to grind just the amount you are going to brew at that time so that the cup is fresh and has a delicious flavor.
Anyway, you can also store ground coffee. As many brands sell it this way, it is essential to keep it correctly. Just keep in mind that the clock runs faster for ground coffee, so you should consume it in less time.
In what containers should coffee be stored?
Fortunately for us coffee lovers, keeping it is really simple. After opened, coffee should be stored in a completely airtight container. The importance of being airtight is that this way it will have as little contact with oxygen as possible. Remember that oxygen accelerates the degradation of the bean, in addition to causing it quickly lose its aromas and flavors.
There are several packaging options in which you can store your coffee. These can be made of materials such as glass or stainless steel. The difference is that glass is transparent, unlike steel. Obviously. The point is that, as it is preferable that the coffee is not in contact with direct light, the stainless steel protects it better. In the same way, you can also store a glass jar in a cupboard or kitchen shelf that is not exposed to light.
On the other hand, you can store coffee in a jar with its original packaging. The interior of this also protects the coffee, the thing is that when it is opened, it won’t be completely closed afterward. That is why it is best to store it in an airtight container.
The other option is to empty the contents of the coffee bag into a jar. This is easier with coffee beans and will still be well preserved, as long as the new packaging is the right one.
A tip you can keep in mind is to divide the coffee and store it in several containers. This way, you only open the same container for a short period of time. Thus, the other containers with the rest of the coffee will be preserved much better as they have not been opened.
Where to store coffee?
Coffee should be stored in a fresh place, free of humidity and away from sources of heat and direct light. It can be on a shelf or kitchen cupboard that meets these conditions.
Also, keep in mind that the heat doesn’t go well with coffee. As with oxygen, it also accelerates the degradation of the bean and causes it to lose flavor and aroma. So keep it away from the stove, oven, and other heat sources. Ideally, the storage place should be very cool and should not exceed 20°C (68 °F).
Some people recommend storing it in the fridge to make it last a long time. Just keep in mind that this is safe only when the packaging has not been opened.
Where should you NOT store coffee?
You may have heard that coffee should be stored in the fridge or even in the freezer to prevent heat damage.
However, after opening the packaging, we do not recommend doing this. If you store it there it can take other smells from the fridge and change its flavor or aroma. In addition, too much moisture may be formed in the packaging.
Do not store it in open or improperly sealed containers, or in brightly lit places.
How long can coffee last?
- Coffee beans are more durable because the aroma and flavor are concentrated in the bean itself. Unopened, a coffee bag can last for about 6 months. After opening, if conditions are really appropriate, it can also last for months.
- Ground coffee tends to lose aroma and flavor faster, so it lasts only about 2 to 3 weeks.
In both cases, although coffee may have a long shelf life, after opening it should ideally be consumed within 30 days.
Just as we carefully make our delicious cup of coffee, we must also take precautions when keeping it. As we could see, it’s a really simple process. We only have to worry about storing it in an airtight container and away from heat, light, oxygen, and moisture.
Follow these simple, but important, recommendations and enjoy a fresh coffee for longer.