Can You Put Hot Coffee In The Fridge? Ultimate Guide

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Coffee is one of the most popular drinks in the world. Many people like to brew a fresh pot of coffee in the morning and enjoy it throughout the day.

But what do you do when you don’t finish your coffee and want to save the rest for later? Can you put hot coffee in the fridge?

The Short Answer

Yes, you can put hot coffee in the fridge. However, you need to follow a few guidelines to store coffee properly and maintain its optimal flavor.

Putting extremely hot coffee directly into the fridge can reduce the fridge’s temperature and compromise food safety. It’s best to let coffee cool down slightly before refrigerating. Very hot coffee can also damage plastic or glass storage containers.

Once coffee has cooled to room temperature or is warm, it can safely go in the fridge. Make sure to transfer the coffee from the carafe or pot into an airtight container. This prevents the coffee from absorbing fridge odors and keeps it fresh.

Refrigerated coffee will maintain good flavor and aroma for 3-5 days. Drink coffee within a few days for maximum enjoyment. Reheating coffee before drinking is recommended.

The Detailed Answer: Tips for Refrigerating Coffee

Follow these tips for storing coffee in the fridge correctly:

Let It Cool first.

Do not put piping-hot coffee directly into the refrigerator. Extremely hot liquids can raise the temperature of the fridge, potentially compromising food safety. Hot coffee can also damage plastic or glass storage containers.

Let the coffee cool down until it is room temperature or warm before refrigerating. This usually takes about 20–30 minutes. The fridge will cool the coffee the rest of the way.

Use An Airtight container.

Transfer the coffee from the pot or carafe into an airtight container before refrigerating. Mason jars, closed pitchers, and bottles with tight lids all work well. You want a container with a seal to lock in aroma and prevent coffee from absorbing fridge odors.

Store For 3-5 Days maximum.

Coffee stored in the refrigerator will stay fresh for 3–5 days. The cold environment slows down the staling process. After 3-5 days, the coffee will start to lose flavor and acidity. Drink refrigerated coffee within a few days for the best taste.

Reheat Before drinking.

Take coffee out of the fridge and allow it to come closer to room temperature before drinking. You can also reheat refrigerated coffee for 30–60 seconds in the microwave or on the stovetop. This brings out the aromas and improves the flavor. Just don’t overheat it.

No Metal Containers

Avoid storing coffee in metal containers or cans in the fridge. The metal can give the coffee a metallic taste over time. Use glass, plastic, or ceramic containers instead.

Don’t Freeze

While refrigerating coffee works well, freezing coffee is not recommended. The freezing and thawing processes degrade the flavor of the coffee. Refrigeration is the best method for storing leftover coffee.

Frequently Asked Questions About Refrigerating Coffee

How long does brewed coffee last in the fridge?

Brewed coffee will maintain good flavor and aroma for 3-5 days when stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

After 5 days, it will start to stale and lose acidity. Drink coffee within 3–5 days of refrigeration for optimal freshness.

Should I put coffee in the fridge while it’s still hot?

No, extremely hot coffee can raise the temperature inside your refrigerator and potentially spoil other foods.

Let the coffee cool to room temperature or warm before refrigerating. Very hot coffee can also damage plastic containers.

Does coffee absorb fridge odors?

Yes, coffee can absorb odors from other foods in the fridge over time. Make sure to store coffee in an airtight container to prevent this. Mason jars or jugs with tight lids work great.

Should I drink refrigerated coffee cold or reheat it?

It’s best to reheat refrigerated coffee before drinking to bring out the full flavor. Take the coffee out of the fridge and let it warm up closer to room temperature, then briefly reheat in the microwave or on the stove. Just don’t overheat it.

How should I reheat refrigerated coffee?

Gently reheat coffee in the microwave for 30–60 seconds or on the stovetop for 1-2 minutes over low heat.

This will bring out the aromas without making the coffee taste burned or bitter from overheating. Stir before drinking to evenly distribute the heat.

Does refrigerating coffee make it stronger?

No, refrigerating coffee does not make it stronger over time. However, chilling can dull the flavor notes, while reheating before drinking makes the coffee taste fresher and more flavorful.

The ideal way to enjoy refrigerated coffee is to reheat it to enhance the aromas.

Storing leftover coffee properly is important for maintaining the best flavor. By letting coffee cool first and refrigerating it in an airtight container, you can enjoy delicious iced coffee or freshly reheated coffee for 3-5 days.

Follow these fridge storage tips for coffee that tastes great until the last drop.


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