One of life’s greatest mysteries is why there is a discrepancy between the number of buns in a pack and the number of hot dogs or hamburgers sold in a package. Surely you’ve found yourself in the position of buying an extra bag of buns in an effort to have enough to go around, only to have several extra doomed to go stale in the fridge. Certainly there’s a way to keep those buns fresher for longer?
Well, there is! Buns can be kept fresh by avoiding the fridge altogether– either by wrapping them in plastic and keeping them at room temperature for up to seven days or freezing the buns until you’re ready to use them.
Why Buns Go Stale in the Fridge
When you want to preserve the longevity of your food, putting it in the fridge is a logical first step and usually a best practice. However, this is the worst thing you could do in an effort to keep buns fresh as putting bread products in the fridge encourages recrystallization of the their starch molecules as the cool temperatures draw out moistyre.This recrystallization, or retro-gradation, is what causes bread to go stale.
How Long Are Buns Good For Unfrozen?
Some variables can affect how long your particular bag of buns will last when stored at room temperature– humidity, for example. Generally speaking though, buns will last for about 5-7 days if re-wrapped and stored in a dry, room temperature environment.
How To Store Buns at Room Temperature
If you are going to use your leftover buns within 5-7 days of opening them, then your best bet at peak freshness is to store them at room temperature. Some tips for success:
- Store buns in a pantry, bread box, or other cool, dark area.
- Store buns in a plastic wrap or foil, with zero parts of the buns exposed to air.
- Store buns in a clear storage container with a lid.
- Keep bread off of any appliances like refrigerators that give off heat to avoid staleness or condensation.
- Keep bread in original packaging, if possible.
Results will vary on a case-to-case basis so make sure to check your buns for freshness before enjoying them.
How to Store Buns in Freezer
If you’ve opened a bag of buns and had your fill for the time being, you can freeze any leftovers to keep them from going stale. If bread is frozen before recrystallization has set in, it will be perfectly fresh once thawed! Best practices for freezing buns:
- Place buns in original packaging or wrapped in plastic in an airtight freezer bag or container.
- Before placing buns in a bag or container to freeze, wrap a layer of foil around the buns.
- Frozen bread is best enjoyed within six months, so it will be helpful to write the date you froze the bread somewhere on the container before putting it in the freezer.
Keeping the buns airtight is pinnacle when freezing them, as too much air exposure will draw moisture out of the breadd and speed up the staleness-causing recrystallization process.
If you’re one of the many home chefs that finds themselves with extra buns after your next backyard grill and chill, you don’t have to resign yourself to throwing away the excess! Under the right conditions, buns can be kept fresh at room temperature for 5-7 days or frozen for up to six months. Of course, results will vary, so find what works best for you!