True coffee aficionados know that freshness counts. To ensure that you are only drinking the freshest coffee, it is generally best to only buy as many beans as you can grind and brew in two weeks' time. Sometimes things happen, though. You may come into your favorite coffee shop and come upon a deal: someone had the cashier grind two pounds of Kona, then didn't have the money to pay for it. She has to sell those two pounds of ground coffee, and she's selling it at a discount. You snap up the deal, but wonder how to keep it fresh at home. This is where proper freezer storage comes in.
Transfer two weeks' worth of your haul to whatever airtight container you are using for counter-top storage.
Put the remaining coffee into airtight containers, dividing it into two-week portions. You want to select containers that are just barely large enough to hold two weeks' worth of grounds, since you want as little air as possible in the containers with your coffee.
Close the airtight containers and make sure that the seal is secure. Gently and carefully turn the containers upside down to make sure that the lids won't fall off.
Wrap the closed airtight containers in three layers of plastic wrap. Air and moisture are the two biggest enemies of coffee freshness, and the plastic wrap will help keep them out.
Place your wrapped containers of coffee deep in the back of your freezer, so that they will freeze as quickly as possible. Only remove one container from the freezer at a time, when your previous counter-top stash has run out. Let the frozen coffee thaw and come to room temperature, then brew and enjoy.
- Once you have removed frozen coffee from the theater and let it thaw, do not attempt to re-freeze it. If you do, condensation will form in the coffee and hurt overall quality.
- Coffee will keep better in whole-bean form than ground when frozen.
- This method is only meant to be used in extreme situations. Coffee is ideally purchased in whole-bean form and ground fresh by the small batch every time you brew a pot.
Working in sunny Florida, Anne Baley has been writing professionally since 2009. Her home and lifestyle articles have been seen on Coldwell Banker and Gardening Know How. Baley has published a series of books teaching how to live a frugal life with style and panache.