Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >
Feb 8, 2002 06:44 PM

home made bread turns stales too fast

  • w

I think I have asked this before, but didn't really get a satifactory answer, so I thought I give it another try.
Any avid home bakers, please help.

Why is it that home made bread (from scratch with bread flour) turns stale and so hard after one or two days? How come store bought bread can stay nice a fluffy for days on end? I can't eat a whole loaf of bread by myself in one day. And toasting it to make them softer is too much hassel and sometimes not the texture I'm after. Maybe it's perservatives, but in no cooking shows or cookbooks has there ever mention of adding something into make bread last longer.


  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Freeze the bread and defrost it as you need it. You can bake it all the way or make your own brown and serve bread. Divide the dough into rolls, bake until set but not browned. Freeze. Peel off rolls as you need them.

    1. You're right. The are some additives, that help prevent bread staling. You can find all the info you need in the King Arthur Flours site, where you can also order their paper catalog. I like to browse through it, though i order online.
      They carry everything you need to become a pro in bread baking, including some stuff that will prevent bread from staling

      1. Hi Wendy-

        You don't say what kind of bread you are baking. For a French or Italian style lean loaf, these do tend to stale fast. If you like the recipe, add a tablespoon or two of oil, or an egg. Fats (oils, shortening, egg yolks, etc.) are tenderizers and will not add significantly to a per-slice calorie count.

        The previous suggestions for rolls, or par-baking, or freezing pre-sliced amounts, are great ideas. You can also make small loaves (free form or buy small bread tins) and freeze them for later use.

        Also, one tablespoon of vinegar per pound of dough is a natural preservative and will delay molding.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Mimi

          In addition to what others have said, I believe that slow rise breads using less yeast(or breads with starter) dont stale as fast as our modern breads made quickly with lots of yeast.

        2. Most commercial bakers add ascorbic acid (vitamin C) to their dough to lenghten shelf life. I don't remember the amount, but some of the bread books do go into this. King Arthur Flour Co. will have this.

          1. Slice it, put it in a Ziploc style freezer bag and refrigerate it. I make bread about once a week and I've never had a problem with homemade bread stored in this manner going stale, though you have to warm it up before you eat it if you don't like cold bread.