Sourdough bread is a magical loaf, that tastes impeccable. Whether you’ve baked this delicious bread yourself, or bought it from a bakery, there’s always this unspoken eagerness to finish the bread before it becomes dry or stale. Typically, a loaf of bread is good to eat for around 5 days, and always tastes better on the first day, when it’s freshly baked, emanating terrific smells, that make your mouth water. If you’re wondering how to extend the shelf life of sourdough bread, so that it can last a lot longer, then keep reading!
How to Store Sourdough Bread?
When baking a fresh batch of homemade sourdough bread, keep in mind that it should be stored at room temperature. Unwrapped or loosely wrapped in a thin towel.
Your fresh baked sourdough bread can take a while to thoroughly cool, all the while, releasing moisture. If you wrap your bread, or place it in a container, before it has fully cooled, you’re likely to end up with a soggy exterior instead of the crisp chewy crust that you hoped for.
When buying sourdough bread from the bakery the same rules apply. Freshly baked sourdough should be stored at room temperature and consumed within 5 days. Once you’ve bagged or covered your bread it will lose its crisp crust fairly quickly so bear this in mind when storing your loaf past the recommended time limit. As long as there is no mold forming on your loaf then feel free to eat past this point.
How Long Does Sourdough Bread Last in the Fridge?
Sourdough bread will typically survive a couple of days in the fridge. But its best to keep your bread far away from the refrigerator, as this will help your bread dry out faster.
Fortunately, there are many other alternatives that work best, for storing your sourdough bread. You can enjoy its fantastic taste, and crisp texture for the next few days to come.
Can I Freeze Sourdough Bread?
If you don’t plan to eat your sourdough bread within the next few days or a week, then the best option is the freezer.
Ensure your bread is completely cool before freezing.
Once cool, wrap tightly in a plastic bag before freezing. You can do this with whole loaves, half loaves, or even slices.
Frozen slices can be toasted as they are, without defrosting. If you’ve frozen a loaf of sourdough bread, then to thaw your frozen loaf of sourdough, simply spray lightly with water and place in a 325 °F oven for 20-30 minutes until warmed through completely. If baking from frozen doesn’t work for whatever reason, then just leave your loaf out at room temperature until soft enough to slice easily again.
How to Refresh Bread that’s Going Stale?
If your sourdough bread has lost its fresh appearance, there’s no need to panic. It may just need a little moisture and heat before it will feel like the same loaf again.
Similar to reheating frozen bread, a stale loaf needs a little moisture and heat for it to regain its texture and taste like new again.
Try running your entire loaf of bread under the tap, careful not to soak the sides (you can always pat them dry afterwards). Then place the loaf directly on to an oven rack at 325 °F for around 10-15 minutes (or until golden brown).
If it happens to be a loaf cut in half, then cover the exposed area with a piece of foil, so that they don’t become overly dry while baking.
Does Sourdough Last Longer than other Types of Bread?
It’s true that sourdough has a longer shelf life than other types of bread.
Most types of bread are made with preservatives, which can shorten their lifespan. The lactic acid found in sourdough slows down the staling process, while the acidity of the bread inhibits mold growth and bacterial action, making it possible for them to last longer – although not indefinitely.
In addition, dense rye and seeded loaves tend to have a longer shelf life as well because they have more moisture than white wheat flour-based loaves.
How Long Does Bread Last?
Curious to know the shelf life of your bread?
Well here’s your answer!
|Packaged Bread||2-3 days||6 months|
|Sourdough Bread||2-3 days||3 months|
|Bread Rolls||3 months||Over 3 months|
|Rye Bread||3-4 days||3-5 months|
What to do With Stale Sourdough Bread?
If your sourdough bread does eventually become stale, then don’t worry, there are many ways to make some delicious use of your sourdough bread, once it’s passed its freshness.
Here are some ideas for you to try:
- French Toast
- Bread Crumbs
- Bread Salad
- Garlic Bread
- Bread and Butter Pudding
French toast works well with any type of bread that has gotten a little dry from being left out for too long. You can use white or wheat flour to give this recipe an extra layer of flavor. The batter should be made with equal parts milk and water so that it is thin enough to soak into the bread without getting too thick when added to heat Add vanilla extract for extra sweetness! Serve warm with maple syrup drizzled on top.
Making bread crumbs out of leftover slices can be fairly easy, and great to add as toppings for casseroles or soups.
Simply blend them in a food processor, until they’ve reached the perfect crumbled consistency. Add some salt and pepper, then store in an airtight container, ready to use when you need it.
To create this dish, simply tear the bread into pieces and toss it with olive oil and vinegar before adding any other ingredients you desire. This recipe makes a great lunch or snack that can be eaten cold on a hot summers day, or as a quick mid-evening snack!
Try using your stale bread to make some delicious garlic bread.
Slice the bread into 1-inch thick slices and brush each side generously with olive oil. Season to your liking then bake at 350 °F for 10 minutes or until golden brown.
Bread and Butter Pudding
Make this classic British dessert with stale sourdough bread.
Start by soaking slices in milk for 15 minutes then drain them thoroughly before mixing together with sugar and spices. Pour this mixture into individual bowls or ramekins then cover tightly with plastic wrap before refrigerating overnight so all liquids can be absorbed by the bread; this is what makes it so moist when baked later on. Bake at 325 °F until golden brown, for about 45 minutes depending on how big your dish is, and serve hot right away while still warm!
So How Long Does Sourdough Bread Last?
Sourdough bread can last from up to a week, to a couple of months, depending on the type of storage you choose to stick with. Whether you choose to freeze it – so that it is still available for you to come back to in several weeks, or prefer to store it in a container to eat within 5 days, as long as there is no signs of molding on your loaf, you’re good to go!
Any visible signs of mould, indicates that the bread has gone bad and is inedible.
Store bought sourdough bread lasts about 5 to 7 days in the pantry.
Sourdough’s natural acidity discourages bacteria, allowing it to last longer than other bread.
If you choose to freeze your sourdough bread then it can last for up to 3 months, but freshly bough sourdough bread can only remain edible for up to 5 to 7 days.