How to Keep Bread from Molding: Easiest Ways

There’s truly nothing better than a fresh loaf of bread for preparing sandwiches or eating with bread spread and homemade jam to have with a cup of tea. 

One of the issues is how to keep bread from molding.

It doesn’t take time for just the right amount of dampness to build up so mold can start to form. And when mold starts to grow, you’ll have to trash the entire loaf of bread!


We’ve come up with a few methods that guarantee your fresh bread won’t mold before you have the opportunity to enjoy each and every slice!

Although homemade bread and organic bakery bread are delicious, the plain truth is that most store-bought bread will stay longer. But, there are some hacks you can use to keep any bread fresher for longer.

Keeping bread fresh can be difficult for anyone, especially for smaller households and those residing in hot, humid climates. Learning how to keep bread from molding is the easiest way to keep your bread fresh and to enjoy every loaf to its very last crumb.

Bread Basics

Commercially baked loaves of store-bought bread usually contain a preservative to prevent the molding process from starting too early. These preservatives are frequently unnatural sounding names like calcium propionate (an antimycotic). Antimycotics hinder the growth of fungi. Sounds frightening, but if you don’t usually bake, store-bought is frequently the easy go-to choice.

Scientists who exist just to research bread (yes, really!) say the thicker the bread, the slower the molding process. Hence the more common brands of white bread could start to mold a little quicker than some heavy whole-grain bread—but maybe not. It’s mostly the preservatives that count.

Whether you’re a lover of store-bought white, whole wheat, or bakery-fresh whole grain, there are methods to keep bread from molding.

What Happens If You Eat Moldy Bread?

You should not even sniff mold on bread since you may get spores up your nose. Inhaling spores is particularly risky for those with a mold allergy or a low immune system.

Some molds form harmful, yet invisible poisons called mycotoxins. These toxins could cause an upset stomach, alter gut microbes, or even increase cancer risk in the long term.

Help for Mold

Mold is ugly fungi — something nobody wants to eat. No matter how many preservatives are added to it, all bread will eventually have molds.

If you place it on your kitchen counter, the bread will mold at precisely the same pace – whether it is in a bread box or not.

Of course, if you bake your own and skip on the preservatives, the bread will mold even faster.

1. Store Bread in Your Freezer

how to keep bread from molding in a freezer

One of the best means to keep bread from molding is to place it in the freezer. If your loaf of bread is not sliced, it is best o slice before freezing so that you can pull out individual slices when you want them instead of the entire loaf.

Slice to the thickness that you prefer. Once sliced, then wrap the entire loaf carefully in plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Then place again into a plastic bag and seal tightly – Thicker freezer bags are ideal.

Wrapping the slices well will retain the moisture in the bread, so it doesn’t dry out and will also prevent freezer burn.

This freezer method will prevent your bread from molding and will also keep it fresh. When you want bread, but you don’t want to take the entire bread loaf out of the freezer, slices will separate easily. Just take the amount you need, carefully wrap up the remainder, and store it in the freezer.

It will only require a few minutes for slices to thaw, so you can use them as you wish. Or take slices, or the whole loaf, out of the freezer the night before and leave them on the kitchen counter. Bread will be fresh and ready for use in the morning.

If wrapped and stored correctly, you can keep bread in the freezer for as long as three months.

2. Bread Boxes

how to keep bread from molding in a bread

Bread boxes aren’t just for appearances (although some can definitely improve the aesthetics of your kitchen). They’re also good for storing bread to prevent it from molding. Just put the loaf directly into the box without adding a paper or plastic bag first.

The interior of a bread box has just the proper amount of air circulation to prevent mold from being able to grow and just enough humidity to keep bread fresh and soft.

It’s ideal not to put more than a loaf into the bread box. The more bread therein, the more humidity will be in the box.

Bigger bread boxes are more ideal than smaller ones as they allow for more air to flow. Don’t get confused by the various types of bread boxes you can now buy – bamboo, ceramic, and enamel.

All work fine to keep bread fresh, so enjoy and buy a bread box that suits your kitchen décor.

3. Cloth Bread Bags

If you don’t own a bread box, or don’t have enough room in your kitchen for one, consider buying a cloth bread bag. These bags keep your bread sealed while still allowing just sufficient airflow so that the bread can breathe.

Don’t own a cloth bread bag? Wrapping up bread in a large clean tea towel will give you the same results as a bag you bought. Using a cloth bag works fine for white French bread, keeping it fresh for about two days.

4. Brown Paper Bag

A simple brown paper bag will stop bread from molding. Many bakeshops sell their bread in a brown paper bag for this very reason.

This method works really great for hard-crusted, rustic bread and will retain the freshness for up to two days. Just keep the bag tightly sealed and store it out of direct sunlight.

5. Store in Kitchen Cabinet

A kitchen cabinet will also work fine to store bread and keep mold from forming. Put the loaf of bread into a paper sack or an open plastic bag.

There will be just the right air circulation in the cabinet to prevent mold from forming, yet not enough air that the bread will dry out too quickly.

If you’re going to try this method, choose a cabinet that is not over the fridge, where heat and humidity may occur.

6. Kitchen Drawer

If your kitchen drawer is deep enough, consider storing your bread there. This is a great spot to keep rustic artisan bread fresh for as long as two days.

You’ll just wrap it in a clean tea towel with the sliced part of the bread facing downwards.

7. Avoid Storing in Plastic

Mold needs just the appropriate conditions to grow, and storing your bread in a sealed plastic bag is going to accommodate those unsafe conditions – moisture and warmth.

If you definitely need to keep bread in a plastic bag, put the bag open and place it on your countertop away from the sun. Leaving the bag open will allow some airflow in the bag, so mold won’t grow.

8. Keep Bread Out of the Fridge

No matter what anyone else says, your fridge is not the ideal place to store bread. In fact, placing bread in the fridge is a valid guarantee that you are going to have stale bread in as short as one day.

While you may be hindering the growth of mold, you’re just reducing the shelf life of the bread loaf. As the starch in the bread begins to crystalize, the moisture moves from the center of the loaf to the outer crust.

Refrigerated bread easily becomes hard, dry… and tasteless!

9. The Type of Bread Matters

Some bread loaves will get moldy faster than others. The top on the list for mold and staleness is French bread and white loaves. You’ll need to store both far away from direct airflow to keep them fresh for more than a day.

Darker kinds of bread, such as rye, sourdough, whole wheat, and whole grain, take a longer time to grow mold, but they should still be stored by applying one of my methods mentioned on the list.

10. Avoid Pre-Sliced Loaves of Bread

When buying bread, it’s best to purchase it whole and not pre-sliced ones. Cut off what you need anytime you’re making a sandwich or a toast.

Pre-sliced bread is more vulnerable to air and will get moldy much faster than unsliced bread. And with unsliced loaves, you get to decide how thick you want your slices to be!

11. Start slicing Bread From the Middle

Another means to keep unsliced loaves of bread fresh and free from mold is to cut into the middle instead of cutting from the end. Just keep joining the bread together again before storing it.

The end crusts will keep the bread fresher with just enough mist to keep it soft without becoming moldy.

12. Reviving Stale Bread

Keeping bread from forming molds doesn’t mean it won’t get stale. There is no need to throw out those remaining few slices of bread just because they are stale.

There’s a hack to reviving stale bread so you can utilize it – just pop it into a warm oven for some minutes. Place the whole loaf, or a few slices, onto a cookie sheet wrapped in parchment paper.

Heating for approximately 3 to 5 minutes will help to soften the bread, so it’s nearly as fresh as new.

13. Toast your Bread!

how to keep bread from molding by toasting

One of the ideal and tastiest ways to eat bread that is getting stale and you’re worried will mold very soon is to toast it! Bread that’s toasted and spread with bread spread is good.

14. Incorporate a sourdough starter into your recipe

Sourdough starter is basically a usable kind of wild yeast that increases the bread’s acidity, preventing mold, as well as staleness.

15. Bake a Denser Kind of Bread

A dense loaf with a crispy crust will mold slower. Imagine rustic Italian bread. Working extra flour into the dough will increase density, and incorporating steam into the loaf with a spray bottle will give a crunchy crust.

16.  Add Some Organic Preservatives

Adding organic preservatives like lecithin or ascorbic acid while kneading the dough helps retain moisture while reducing yeast and mold quantity. Ingredients like garlic, cinnamon, honey, or clove also naturally prevent mold growth but will significantly affect the flavor.

Organic vs Commercially Sold Bread

The commercial bread you purchase in the store contains a lot of preservatives to prevent the molding process from starting too early. Whereas organic bread doesn’t contain preservatives; hence, it’s going to become moldy faster.

You see, it doesn’t matter the kind of bread you buy. It could be bagels, white or whole wheat, sourdough, or even French bread. All loaves bread is going to get moldy. Some may just get moldy faster than others.

The truth of the matter is, the loaf with the most preservatives is the champion in the mold game. It will last longer than its competition (organic bread), twice as much.

But here’s the decision you’re going to have to make when it comes to consuming preservative-laden commercially processed loaf of bread.

First Decision: You’re eating a lot of preservatives that may or may not harm our bodies in the long run; but, the bread stays fresh longer.

Second Decision: You enjoy organic bread and have to deal with the molding by the next day or two.

It’s sort of like a double-edged sword. You just have to weigh the ups and the downs and decided which route you would like to go.

What are the noticeable signs of moldy bread?

Mold comes in different shapes, colors, and smells. If you see visible symptoms of mold that look like spots in the colors of white, black, green, and blue, you would want to make sure you toss that in the bin.

What does moldy bread smell like?

Bread typically should not have a pungent smell. If it smells like someone spilled some vinegar on it, or it smells like stinky feet, throw it out. The only bread that should have a bit of funky scent would be a sourdough kind of bread.

If you just purchased the bread from the grocery store, take it back and either replace it or get your money back.

Recommended Storage for Bread

Although these are only recommendations, the bread will mold at different stages due to the environmental states that surround it. Try to make a duty of looking at your bread before use.


1 to 2 days on the kitchen counter.

Commercially baked bread or (store-bought) bread:

Pantry or room temperature: 5 to 7 days.

Fridge: 1 to 2 weeks.

Freezer: 2 to 3 months.


Pantry: 3 to 5 days

Refrigerator: 5 to 8 days

If you intend to keep bread fresh, it’s necessary first to understand what mold is and what makes bread mold. Mold is a fungus that reproduces through airborne spores. The fuzzy growth that you’re likely seeing is a spore colony.

Mold grows in the right conditions — especially moist, warm spots with a source of food. Sadly, bread makes good mold food.

Is Moldy Bread Bad for You?

Moldy bread gives an off-flavor and may have adverse health consequences if you consume it. Some bread molds are more harmful than others, but it’s impossible to know the type of mold just by glancing at it. To be safe, do not feed on moldy bread.

Can You Throw out a Moldy Slice but Eat the Rest of the Loaf?

It always looks like a shame to toss the whole loaf of bread if only one or two slices reveal any mold. You may consider tossing out only the pieces that have gone moldy and perhaps a surrounding slice or two. Nevertheless, the safest thing is to toss the entire loaf.

Ingredients and Processes

If moldy bread is a problem, one strategy is to make a loaf of bread that has a more acidic condition. There are a few methods you can do this:

Add an edible acid, such as vinegar or lemon juice, to your recipe (1 Tablespoon for each 4 – 5 cups of water).

Let the dough have a longer fermentation time (or first rise). If this isn’t a feature of the initial recipe, try only using 1/4 of the yeast and/or allowing the bread dough to rise overnight in the fridge.

Use sourdough starter in place of commercial yeast. This has the added advantage of creating a loaf of bread that is also more inclined to resist spoiling, as well as molding.

Another approach you can use is to include ingredients that are not as fast and easy for mold to absorb. These include things like:

Using honey, rather than sugar, as a sweetening agent.

Adding whole grains, rather than just using white wheat flour. Barley, oats, rye, millet, and even good old whole wheat are good examples.

FAQs: How to Keep Bread from Molding

Does a Breadbox Keep Bread from Molding?

Bread boxes aren’t just for appearances (although some can definitely improve the aesthetics of your kitchen). They’re also good for storing bread to prevent it from molding. Just put the loaf directly into the box without adding a paper or plastic bag first.

How Do You Make Bread Last Longer?

Freezing bread is the most reliable way to keep homemade bread preserved for longer periods of time. Wrap the cold, dry bread thoroughly in plastic. Be sure there is no moisture or condensation. The loaf can be stored in the freezer for as long as 2 months (you can store it for longer, but the flavor may suffer).

Should Bread Be Kept in Airtight Container?

Storing bread is a matter of regulating temperature and humidity. It is best to keep bread at room temperature in a dark and airtight box. Keeping bread airtight is necessary, but remember that any warm temperatures or rise in humidity will make bread more susceptible to mold.

Why Does Bread Mold so Fast in My House?

Of course, if you make your own and skip the preservatives, the bread will mold even faster. Heat, humidity, and light are all unsafe for bread but good for fungi or mold, so consider your freezer your best bet to keep your loaf fresh and yummy. Tightly sealing the bread also slows down the molding process.

Will Mold on Bread Hurt You?

It would be best if you did not eat mold on bread or from a loaf with obvious spots. The mold roots can easily spread through bread, though you may not see them. Eating moldy bread could make you sick, and inhaling spores may cause breathing problems if you have a mold allergy.

Can I Store Bread in Tupperware?

Most bread should be preserved in an airtight container, yet breathable. But, crusty bread should be stored in paper, or use the end to secure the bread, or store it upside down on a cutting board. So, no Tupperware/Pyrex since they are not breathable. To keep bread longer than 4-5 days, you can freeze it.

Does Bread Mold Faster in Summer?

As the weather starts warming up, there’s so much to love. There’s no way to avoid molds, all fresh-made foods with no artificial preservatives and mold inhibitors will yield to the green and white fuzzy colonies just after only a few days, and this process is faster in warm weather.

Final Words: How to Keep Bread from Molding

Preventing the growth of mold is certainly not too difficult, but it does require you to be really careful.

For preserved freshness, invest in the methods discussed above that would save you trouble in the long run. Or, if you love baking, use certain ingredients to create a more long-lasting loaf. The choice is all yours.

Hopefully, the above article has shown you how to keep bread from molding in order to save you from tiny life forms invading your loaves.

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