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How Long Does Bread Last in the Fridge

Fresh, spongy bread is fun to make and delicious to eat. You can store it for a few days on the counter, but how long does bread last in the fridge? This depends on if it’s homemade or store-bought and how well you wrap it, but it’s a great way to keep it fresh for much longer. 

Freshly sliced multigrain bread on a dark cutting board.

How long does bread last in the fridge? 

Once you get bread home from the store, it will last until the expiration date on the bag when you leave it on the counter. 

You can get a much longer shelf life from bread when you put it in the fridge right away, and it will last up to two weeks in the refrigerator when it’s properly sealed so no moisture can get in. 

How long you can keep it in the fridge after the expiration date depends on how long you left it on the counter before putting it in the fridge. 

What happens to bread when it’s not kept in the fridge? 

When bread is left on the counter past its expiration date or longer than three days for homemade bread, it hardens and grows mold. 

You’ll be able to tell if it’s stale right away because the texture is tough and no longer spongy. 

If you see mold, throw it out. Mold can be dangerous to ingest or even inhale, especially if you have a mold allergy.

What kind of bread can I save in the fridge? 

You can save almost any kind of baked bread in the refrigerator. It will keep longer when stored in a temperature-controlled drawer and protected from moisture. 

Some types of baked bread that you can store in the fridge are here: 

  • Banana bread
  • Pita bread 
  • Sliced bread
  • Zucchini bread 
  • Garlic bread 
  • Gluten-free 
  • Naan 
  • Ciabatta 
  • Sandwich bread 
  • White bread 
  • Pumpkin 
  • Cheese bread 
  • Rye bread
  • Artisan 
  • Wheat bread 
  • Whole grain 
  • Sourdough 

How to store bread in the fridge

You can keep bread whole, quartered, or sliced in the refrigerator. 

Be sure to double wrap it, so it stays fresh longer. You can even put it in a large plastic zip-top bag after wrapping it in plastic wrap. 

This will help prevent moisture from accumulating on the bread or container. 

Should bread be stored in the refrigerator? 

The answer to this question is varied. You can keep bread in the fridge if you have too much or want to save it for the longest amount of time possible. 

However, it’s not ideal since the bread dries out and gets tougher over time. If you know you’ll eat the bread within a couple of days, and it’s best to keep it on the counter at room temperature. 

Your bread will taste better for those first few days this way.  

Can I store bread in the freezer? 

A great way to store bread is in the freezer. Freezing bread causes the starch’s rapid crystallization, which keeps the bread fresh even longer

The best part is that it’s practically like no time has passed once you let it thaw. The bread will taste fresh and be perfectly moist like the day you baked it. 

How to bring your bread back to life

Once the bread has been in the refrigerator, allow it to “come back to life.” 

Completely unwrap it and allow it to come to room temperature on the counter. 

It can get soggy if it’s left in the wrapping or microwaved; however, you can toast it straight from the fridge or freezer.  

Can you keep bread dough in the fridge?  

You can absolutely keep bread dough in the fridge for up to 72 hours. Some recipes, like sourdough bread, even call for it to rise for 24 or 48 hours in the fridge. 

Remember that if you keep the dough in the fridge, you need to bake it before eating it. Eating raw dough isn’t a good idea.   

FAQ

Why does bread get hard in the fridge?

Hardening is normal when the bread gets cold; however, you can easily soften it by leaving it on the counter until it warms up. 

Can I put bread back in the fridge after letting it warm on the counter?

It’s not a good idea to put bread back in the fridge after setting it on the counter for a few hours. All the back and forth with the temperature will harden the bread much more quickly. 

Take out what you need and keep the rest in the fridge. 

How can you tell if bread has gone bad?

It’s usually pretty easy to tell if bread has gone bad. 

You’ll be able to see mold or it will have a smell like dirt. Mold can be gray, green, or white and puffy. 

Can you eat two-month-old bread?

This all depends on where it was stored. 

If the bread has been on the counter, no. If it’s been in the refrigerator, probably not. If it’s been in the freezer, yes! 

Conclusion 

So how long does bread last in the fridge? This depends on how well it’s wrapped, but generally up to two weeks! 

You can also freeze bread to make it last even longer. 

Bread dough will stay fresh in the fridge for up to 72 hours before it needs to be baked or frozen. 

Keeping your bread in the refrigerator is a great way to keep it fresh for much longer than leaving it on the counter. 

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