How Long Do Coffee Beans Last?

Pouch with coffee beans.

As a coffee lover, you may have sat down with your freshly brewed cup of joe (morning coffee), looked forward to that first tantalizing taste, and then thought, ‘yuk’ and been disappointed with the taste. Does coffee go stale? How long do coffee beans last? Can better storage help?

Are Your Coffee Beans Stale?

Dry coffee beans that are past their expiry date do not tend to make you sick. It is more to do with the aroma and flavors. A few signs your coffee beans have gone stale are:

  • Taste — a lack of flavor, bitter taste or an unpleasant aftertaste.
  • Appearance — coffee beans look dull and matt. Fresh beans should be glossy due to the aromatic oils in the beans.
  • Smell — a musty smell, a bit like cardboard, and they lack the beautiful fragrance of fresh coffee beans.
  • Touch — lack of oily residue on your hands or in the bag if they have gone stale. Fresh beans are oily to the touch.

Dark roast coffee beans in a pouch.

How Long Do Coffee Beans Last?

It depends on a few factors, how you store the beans, what type, and personal preference on taste. Generally, roasted beans last two to six months if stored in a sealed bag with an air valve or an airtight container. Heat, moisture, light, and oxygen affect the freshness of beans.

Can I Freeze Coffee Beans?

Yes, if stored in sealed bags that do not let in moisture. It is best to keep the beans in small vacuum-sealed bags, so you take out what you need. You can store the beans in the freezer for two years.

Do Dark Roasted Beans Go Off Quicker?

Roasting coffee beans for longer produces those delicious beans for espresso shots. It also causes the pressure to build up inside the bean during the roasting process until the bean cracks pushing the oils to the surface and evaporating, causing the beans to dry out. You must use dark roasted beans quicker than light roasted.

Green coffee beans in a pouch.

Do Green Beans Last Longer?

Green beans are unroasted beans. They can be stored in a hessian sack for two years or in vacuum-sealed bags and kept in the freezer indefinitely in their raw state. You can roast your coffee beans in batches that last for about ten days. Can you imagine the smell of roasting your coffee beans, divine? An endless supply of fresh, aromatic, delicious roasted coffee beans.

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