If you’re looking to keep your coffee at maximum freshness, keeping coffee grounds in a mason jar can work. Follow these tips for the best way to maintain freshness and flavor of the coffee. Can you use a mason jar to store ground coffee? Yes you can. Using a glass jar may just prove to be your best container option for extending your coffee’s shelf life and enjoying that bag of coffee for a long time.
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How to Make Stale Coffee
What makes coffee become stale? Here are several causes.
Oxygen breaks down coffee just as it does other food. When you leave things out in air, it becomes easy for the oxygen to cause breakdown. Oxidation can only be prevented by keeping air out.
I’ve been trying to figure out how to keep potatoes through the winter by keeping them in a bin in our mud room. I figured out they needed the right temperature and airflow but one thing I overlooked was the way light poked into their storage bin. Until I can keep them in a consistently dark place, I will continue to pick up green potatoes.
Just as with the potatoes, light causes coffee beans to age. If you want coffee to go bad fast, just keep it out in the open where light can reach it. The kitchen counter is the ideal place to catch light.
Warm temperatures also cause coffee beans to go bad. If you are looking to make beans stale, leave your beans at room temperature or warmer. Those cozy warm beans will lose flavor and freshness in no time.
As with oxygen, moisture also sabotages the best coffee storage containers. This is one reason to keep your coffee, whether whole beans or pre-ground beans, out of the refrigerator.
What Makes Fresh Coffee Last
The freshest coffee is that which is ground RIGHT before you use it. After coffee is ground, it’s surface area multiplies exponentially, meaning the amount of the bean that gets oxidized is much more than with whole coffee beans. Store your whole bean coffee in an airtight container in the freezer as long as possible before grinding it. Here’s a look at how fast types of coffee will age.
- Green Coffee Beans (non roasted coffee beans) : Age slowly and retain flavor
- Roasted Whole Beans: Age quickly and loose flavor quickly
- Coffee Grounds after grinding beans: Age Extremely fast and loose flavor extremely fast
As you can see, the process of roasting coffee initiates the aging process but pre-ground coffee is sure to go bad extremely fast unless steps are taken to preserve it’s flavor and life. Not everyone wants to roast their own coffee and some prefer purchasing coffee grounds. The National Coffee Association recommends buying freshly roasted coffee grounds in small batches more frequently to enjoy it closer to the roast date.
Use an Airtight Container
My research brought this up over and over. If the coffee bags your coffee came in are resealable, it may be best to leave them in the original packaging. Many coffee bags are made to have an airtight seal for preserving the grounds.
The most important point to a coffee’s container is having an airtight seal. Glass, ceramic or stainless steel containers work but the most efficient will be an opaque container or opaque bag that also keeps out light. Glass doesn’t do this, which is why you need to keep it in the dark.
Store in A Dark Dry Place
Not only is direct sunlight a no no. We want darkness to help keep the freshest coffee possible. If your coffee canister is not an opaque container, keeping it out of direct sunlight is essential.
Store away from other Foods
In order to keep flavors from your coffee as well as bacteria and oxygen, keep other food away. Avoid storing in the refrigerator or freezer unless you are using a vacuum sealed container or the packaging is very airtight. In that case, the freezer may be the best place. Yes, you can make shots straight from coffee grounds stored in the freezer.
Keep it Cool
Lastly, keep your ground beans in a cool place such as a pantry or inside a cool kitchen cabinet.
Best Way to Store Coffee in Mason A Jar
Absolutely follow the tips above, but the question still remains, “can you store coffee in a mason jar?” The answer is yes. Here’s how to maintain your freshest coffee drink.
use New Lids for an Airtight Seal
In order to have the best airtight seal, use new jars and lids. Rusty lids will not secure equally along the rim, which can open up small pockets for air to flow.
Use Lids with a One Way Valve
One of the very best ways to keep coffee fresh is to use a fermentation kit or vacuum- sealed container such as this one. I haven’t personally tried this method but Robert, from Towards Data Science, suggests you reseal once a day for the first two days after roasting due to carbon dioxide release. In his opinion, vacuum sealed jars do work better than a simple mason jar, but mason jars still work well.
Other Posts You Might Enjoy
Know someone going off coffee? They can still enjoy a morning cup of deep flavored tea with cream. I’ve been so amazingly impressed by Farmhouse Teas and their “not coffee” blends. I recommend trying their Sugar Maker’s Not Coffee blend! Also check out these posts that just might go well with your cup of jo.
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From the Hilltop,