How to Store Sourdough Bread


Sourdough is one of the most delicious breads, and can be considered an artisan bread, depending how it’s made and how the loaf is formed. But once all that work has been put into making an excellent loaf of bread, it shouldn’t be wasted. You’ll want to know how to store sourdough bread.

whole loaf of sourdough bread
whole loaf of sourdough bread

And our post below is chock full of all the best knowledge for you to enjoy a delicious loaf of bread.

Sourdough Storage

Traditionally, a loaf of sourdough bread is complete with a crisp and somewhat hard exterior crust, and the inside is soft, has a nice large crumb with air pockets.

The goal is to find the best storage method that will maintain both the crust and the soft crumb.

First 24 hours: Our recommendation is for the first 24 hours, store your loaf on the counter, in closed paper bag, or tea towel if it’s not cut. This allows air to circulate. Then after it’s been sliced, leave the cut side down on bread board to keep it from drying out.

Days 3-5: During days 3 to 5, you’ll want to transfer your loaf to a plastic bag or sealed container, to keep it from drying out further.

Day 5:  On day 5, your loaf should be stored in the freezer to help lengthen its shelf life. If you know that your bread won’t be eaten right away, it of course can be frozen after it cools, rather than waiting until day 5.

sourdough on wood cutting board
sourdough on wood cutting board

How to Refresh Frozen Sourdough

To refresh frozen sourdough, allow it to thaw at room temperature or in the refrigerator overnight. Once thawed, you can use it as toast, grilled cheese, or your favorite food item.

Sourdough freezes well and you don’t really need to fuss with it after it’s been frozen and thawed. It’s ready to go.

Using up Leftover Sourdough

There are so many ways you can use up leftover sourdough bread. Here are some ideas:

French Toast
Grilled Cheese
Bread Pudding
Avocado Crostini
Garlic Bread
Homemade Croutons

sourdough bread with slices
sourdough bread with slices

How to Store Sourdough Bread

Sourdough bread is somewhat of a work of art. It is a bread that can be in progress for a few weeks in advance due to the creation of the starter. And when it’s finished it’s a delicious treat to be enjoyed. 

If you’ve made more sourdough than will be initially consumed by those who gather around your table, chances are you’ll want to know how to store sourdough bread. Here’s how to store homemade sourdough bread.

On the counter. Sourdough can be stored on the counter for the first 24 hours after it’s been baked. If it is sliced, the sliced end should be placed down on the cutting board for storage. After 24 hours, the bread should be moved to a place that will help it to maintain its moisture. 

In a bread box. Sourdough bread can be stored in a sealed bread box for 3-5 days so that it’s readily available to be consumed and to help maintain freshness. 

In a cloth bag. Another way to store sourdough bread is in a cloth bag. This method of storage will give it more of a crispy exterior.

Disposable packaging. Disposable packaging such as a sealed zipped storage bag is also suitable for storing sourdough bread.

Freezer. We recommend freezing sourdough bread on day 5 or before if it hasn’t yet been eaten. Before placing it in the freezer, make sure there are no signs of mold and that it is wrapped well and sealed to help prevent freezer burn.

Best Storage Methods

In summary, the best way to store whole loaves of sourdough bread for the short-term is to keep it unwrapped at room temperature.

For long-term storage, the best way to store sourdough is whole in the freezer. And, it can be stored sliced in the freezer.

Don’t Place Bread in the Refrigerator

The main thing to remember when storing sourdough bread is to not keep it in the refrigerator. Either store it at room temperature or move it to the freezer. Keeping it in the refrigerator tends to cause it to stale faster.

How To Freeze Sourdough Bread

To freeze sourdough bread, we recommend freezing it as a whole loaf whenever possible. This will help to keep it as fresh as possible and will help to keep it from drying out and becoming freezer burnt.

However, it is fine to freeze sourdough bread that has already been sliced. 

slices of sourdough bread
slices of sourdough bread

Frequently Asked Questions

Following are frequently asked questions for how to store sourdough bread. If you have a question that’s not answered here, please drop it to us in the comments box below and we’ll be happy to answer it.

What makes sourdough bread different from yeasted bread?

The main difference between sourdough bread and yeast bread is that sourdough contains a higher water content, consists of a more open crumb, and tends to not mold as fast.

Sourdough bread doesn’t require yeast to make it rise. Rather, it traditionally uses a sourdough starter which allows the dough to rise.

How long does sourdough bread stay fresh? 

Sourdough bread will generally stay fresh for up to 24 hours for the best results.

How do you keep sourdough bread crusty?

Sourdough baked to perfection has a crusty bread exterior. Since sourdough has a higher hydration, the best way to maintain this is to store it wrapped in a tea towel.

How can I store sourdough bread without plastic?

Storing sourdough bread without plastic is fine to do. In fact, it’s best to not store it in plastic because the plastic can hold in too much moisture creating condensation, especially if the bread is still warm.

Instead, it’s better to store it wrapped in a tea towel.

Can I freeze sourdough bread?

Yes, sourdough bread can be frozen to lengthen its shelf life. To freeze sourdough bread seal it in a freezer safe airtight container or seal it in a zipped freezer bag.

Is sourdough bread better for you?

It depends on what you’re comparing sourdough to as to whether it’s better for you. If you’re comparing it to wheat or white bread, then yes, sourdough is certainly easier to digest.

Can you toast sourdough bread?

Yes, sourdough bread can be toasted, and it makes some of the best toast.

Does sourdough bread have a use by date?

Of course homemade sourdough doesn’t have a use by date. Although we recommend using it within 5 days or freezing it.

Some brands of purchased sourdough bread can have a use by date.

How long does sourdough bread stay fresh?

Homemade sourdough bread will generally last up to 5 days before it should be frozen. We list instructions above for how to store sourdough bread in the freezer.

how to store sourdough bread Pinterest Pin
how to store sourdough bread Pinterest Pin

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Sarah is known for her extra fancy yeast breads, melt in your mouth pies, and everything salads. She has won awards as a home cook, and is passionate about helping others feel smarter in the kitchen. Sarah is the cooking genius of the sister duo.

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