I ground some coffee beans this morning, but I'm not a major coffee drinker, how fast can I expect its flavour to degrade, and at what point would it become completely undrinkable?

2 Answers 2


Coffee should never be stored in the fridge!

In the same way that baking soda absorbs smells, coffee will absorb smells and flavors in your refrigerator. These compounds can be extracted when you brew your coffee and will contribute to undesired flavors.

Proper storage of coffee is to put your beans into an airtight container, and store around 25C out of sunlight (EX: your cabinet).

  • That's good to know about the beans. I assume that the same applies for after it's been ground?
    – Nick Udell
    Jan 27, 2015 at 21:19
  • In this answer we can say that beans and ground coffee are interchangeable and should be stored in the same way.
    – John Snow
    Jan 27, 2015 at 21:20
  • Actually in retrospect I'm going to leave this question open for now, because I'm still curious how fast its flavour would degrade in the fridge, and at what point it becomes unpalatable.
    – Nick Udell
    Jan 27, 2015 at 21:23
  • 1
    It would depend on the content of your refrigerator. If you were storing cut onions and garlic in it, it would be undesirable very quickly. If you had a dedicated refrigerator for your coffee, you wouldn't run into such issues. Because of the unknown variables of refrigerators, such an answer is not possible.
    – John Snow
    Jan 27, 2015 at 21:26
  • 1
    One would need to make a graph, defining flavor, and measuring intensity of flavor over time. I'm unaware if such a study exists. I also believe, that different types of coffee would age differently, based off of densities.
    – John Snow
    Jan 27, 2015 at 21:35

Instead of storing in the fridge, follow the standard Italian recommendation (found on lots of Italian coffee packages):

store the ground coffee in your freezer - it's cooler and drier than your fridge.

Also use a non-transparent container that seals well. Those Illy metal cans work quite well and are endlessly reusable.

Hope this helps!

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