Few things are as satisfying as a freshly baked good with a cup of coffee in the morning. While finding the time to bake every morning is not likely, baking something delicious and moist, like banana bread, ahead of time will allow you to enjoy this little indulgence for days to come. With the right storage techniques, banana bread and other baked goods will stay fresh for days and taste just as good as the day they were made.
Shelf Life of Banana Bread
Though the shelf life of banana bread depends on the amount of wet ingredients, like the bananas themselves, and therefore the amount of moisture, in the bread, there are ways to preserve the baked good for several days. Banana bread that remains in the pantry will be good for as little as two days if it is a drier loaf, while denser, moister loaves can hold well for up to six days.
Using the same logic with regard to how long the banana bread will last based on its moisture content, a dry loaf will keep for up to a week in the refrigerator while a wetter loaf can keep for a week and a half to two weeks. Regardless of the moisture content, banana bread that is properly stored and placed in the freezer will keep for up to three months without the taste or texture diminishing.
How to Store Banana Bread
To extend the shelf life of banana bread for as long as possible, the baked good should be stored in an airtight container to prevent it from drying out and going bad as quickly as it would if exposed to the open air. The best way to store banana bread is to first wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil before placing it inside a self-sealing plastic bag or properly sealed container. Using this method will lock in moisture, and the bread will stay fresh on the counter top for several days, inside the fridge for roughly a week without going bad or in the freezer without the risk of freezer burn.
Tips for Storing Banana Bread
While banana bread is a naturally moist baked good due to the bananas themselves, it is important that additional moisture is not captured when storing the bread. Allow the banana bread to cool completely for a full six to eight hours before tightly wrapping. If the banana bread is still warm when it is wrapped, the heat will trap condensation that forms against the plastic wrap or foil and cause the bread to grow mold. If the banana bread has an odd smell or mold on it, throw it away.
Do not cool banana bread inside the pan it was cooked in. The heat of the loaf pan will cause the bread to sweat as it cools, which creates a soggy bottom on the banana bread loaf. Use a cooling wrack or improvise by stacking long-handled wooden spoons across a baking sheet. Place the banana bread on the wrack or makeshift cooling area to allow air to flow beneath it and properly cool the baked good.
If baking banana bread is a part of meal prep for a week of breakfasts, try slicing the loaf into individual proportions that are then tightly wrapped and stored in a sealing bag. This allows you to take only one slice at a time while leaving the remaining slices in the fridge or freezer. When banana bread is brought up to room temperature repeatedly, especially from frozen, it will cause the loaf to go bad more quickly than if it stays at a steady temperature.
Molly is a freelance journalist and social media consultant. In addition to Leaf.tv, Molly has written for Teen Vogue and Paste magazine. She is the former assistant editor of the Design and Style section of Paste magazine. View her work at www.mmollyharris.com.