Ground coffee is part of many people’s daily routines. Your greatest ally during busy mornings, it reduces the number of preparation steps needed to obtain that much-coveted hot beverage. The only downside: if you don’t practice the appropriate preservation methods, the taste and quality of the product can suffer as a result. As these are elements that don’t deserve to be sacrificed, here are a few tips for preserving ground coffee.
Control the temperature and humidity
The ambient temperature should be neither too hot nor too cold. Coffee – whether ground or whole bean – can’t handle extreme temperatures. You should therefore avoid storing it in the refrigerator or too close to the oven.
Even in a sealed container, the oils in the coffee could be affected by the temperature, giving the coffee a more bitter taste. The first goal of preservation is to preserve these oils. Almost all coffee preservation tips work this way. Knowing that, it therefore goes without saying that, even though it’s a common practice, it’s not advisable to store coffee in the freezer.
With regard to humidity, grinding coffee beans helps eliminate the presence of moisture in them, among other things. However, ground coffee is very delicate and can easily be affected by humidity, even in small doses.
Choose an airtight jar
The worst enemies of ground coffee are air, light, and humidity. The ideal container for preserving coffee should be able to protect the coffee against these three harmful elements. To prevent the coffee from succumbing to oxidation, using a dark, airtight jar is recommended.
The same concern also arises when opening the jar. There are containers equipped with a valve that you can easily open and close. By using such a container, the time during which the coffee is exposed to air and light is reduced. Otherwise, a traditional Mason jar, provided that it’s opaque, can play the role of container quite well, but you should avoid leaving it open for long periods of time.
The container will also serve to preserve the aromas of the coffee and reduce its exposure to the odours that surround it. By the way, there’s another downside related to storing your coffee in the refrigerator. Since the fridge is such a stuffy environment, odours move around in it and tend to get absorbed by any sensitive foods – all the more reason not to store your coffee there.
Buy in small quantities
Coffee lovers swear by coffee made from freshly ground beans. If that option isn’t available, the other alternative is to buy ground coffee in small quantities. Many shops sell coffee in bulk, thus allowing people to control the amount of product they get.
Buy whole bean coffee and grind it just before
To save time in the morning, you can grind a little bit of coffee in advance. This amount of ground coffee could last several days. If you’re buying beans and making some spare ground coffee, try to control the amounts and follow the preservation advice outlined in the preceding paragraphs.
Check the best-before date
If you’re buying a package of coffee with a best-before date written on it, it’s important to check it closely. After this date, it’s still possible to consume the ground coffee, but the flavours will no longer be as rich and complex. If – as is the case with Lenoir & Lacroix coffee – your bag doesn’t specify a best-before date, that’s generally a sign that it was distributed in smaller quantities, with a greater freshness than that of the major brands.
Lenoir & Lacroix coffee is roasted the same week it’s delivered to stores, which means that the product has been on the shelves for just a few days. In addition, we supply our retailers every week, which ensures the freshness of the coffee. With that in mind, a sealed bag of whole bean coffee will still taste great up to about 2 months after roasting. Once the bag has been opened, this shelf life is reduced, which is why it’s important to properly preserve the coffee.