How Long Does Brewed Coffee Last? (Explanation & Tips)

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Coffee is a valuable and popular drink. Drinking coffee until the last drop, that’s what I call enjoying!

Sometimes you can’t consume a full cup of coffee, perhaps for a few hours, and you still want it to be fresh and tasty. So, how long does brewed coffee last? It still remains a mystery to some.

Keep reading to explore!

How Long Does Brewed Coffee Last?

Brewed coffee can only be kept at room temperature for 30 minutes unless you want to lose its taste. It loses its optimal flavor and aroma owing to oxidation after a while.

Even though losing the freshness and natural taste is the worst thing that can happen, one thing is much worse: spoiled coffee. In this case, brewed coffee will become harmful, making it potentially hazardous to drink.

Let’s take a closer look at the reason!

The Chemistry Of Coffee Oxidation

Coffee beans oxidize when they come into contact with air. This occurs when you leave them open outside for a certain amount of time.

Roasted coffee beans are stored properly, which slows down the oxidation process and allows them to last for a few weeks.

Brewing coffee is also one kind of oxidation. When coffee beans come into contact with water, they release aromatics, oils, and acids. This chemical reaction contributes to a delicious cup of coffee, so it is essential to prevent it before brewing.

When creamer or milk is added to coffee, on the other hand, the coffee’s life is shortened to the length of the additional component, which promotes oxidation.

Flavor And Aroma

You should be aware that oxidation progress continues even after the coffee has been made into a drink. Although it isn’t apparent to the naked eye, such a reaction has a significant impact on the flavor of coffee beans. 

It causes flavoring elements in coffee to deteriorate and be released into the air upon contact. When you put your coffee out for too long, the contact between hydrogen and oxygen changes the pH level of the coffee, causing it to taste bitter or stale.

7 Tips To Keeping Brewed Coffee Stay Fresh

The shelf life of brewed coffee is determined by what you do with it once made. Here are 7 easy tips to keep coffee fresh. 

Remove The Coffee From The Heat Source

When making drip coffee, it is critical to take the coffee pot from the burner as soon as it is finished. It can oxidize more quickly and turn sour if you keep it on the burner.

Keep Coffee Hot Without Extra Heat

Transfer the coffee to airtight containers such as an air pot, carafe, or thermos after removing from the burner to eliminate excessive heat intake.

The airtight container can keep the heat and flavor of the coffee without allowing it to become bitter or off-tasting.

Put In The Fridge

Keeping the coffee cold extends the flavor and aroma of the coffee for over 2 hours outside. Brewed black coffee can usually be stored in the fridge for up to a week. You can reheat the cold-brewed coffee from the fridge, yet it won’t taste as wonderful as a newly made cup.

Make Coffee Ice Cubes

Rather than wasting leftover coffee, freeze it into ice cubes. It’s simple to make ice cubes: wait until the coffee is close to room temperature, fill the ice cube tray with coffee, and place it in the freezer.

You can store the ice cubes in the tray or transfer them to a ziplock bag to keep the flavor once it’s frozen. Iced coffee can be enjoyed whenever you want without having to pour your coffee in the usual manner.

Bartend Your Brewed Coffee

Coffee mixed cocktails are a fantastic way to take advantage of leftover coffee. They’re some of the most delectable mixed cocktails available right now.

Coffee cocktails range from simple to five-star versions. The way these cocktails blend bittersweet coffee and sweet liqueur will have you addicted.

If you want to know more tips for making coffee cocktails, don’t ignore this video:

Brew Less

If you don’t like throwing out old coffee or drinking coffee with compromised flavor, consider making less coffee more frequently. Determine how much coffee you typically consume and only brew all you need.

Cooking With The Brewed Coffee

Instead of storing brewed coffee in the refrigerator or making too much of it, you can use it in cooking. There are several simple ways to use up leftover coffee: ice cream, cakes, oatmeal, and even a coffee marinade for steak.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is It Safe To Drink Day-Old Coffee?

Not advisable. You should not drink day-old coffee, especially if it’s gone rancid and has an unpleasant odor or flavor.

Almost coffee left out for more than 12 hours can have adverse effects on your health. Drinking day-old coffee with milk might be harmful in some instances or when consumed in a large amount.

How Long Can Black Coffee Sit Out?

A cup of black coffee may be stored at room temperature for up to 24 hours after brewing. So it’s still safe for human consumption, although its unique flavor can be lost to some extent. 

We also recommend you not to keep coffee with milk or creamer out for more than 1 to 2 hours. 

How Do You Know If Coffee Is Still Fresh Or Not?

Looking for a coating of crema or foam is the utmost method to know if the coffee you’re drinking is fresh. A jet black liquid coffee indicates that it is stale.

Another way is doing a sniff test. If coffee doesn’t have an unpleasant or lost smell, it may still be fresh.

The Bottom Line

Hopefully, you will get an ultimate answer to the question “How long does brewed coffee last?”. Remember, the maximum amount of time to keep the brewed coffee outside is only 30 minutes. 

After that time, you had better pour it away. Well, that is also the end of today’s article. If you found this article helpful, don’t hesitate to share it with others!

Almost 20 years already spent committed to coffee and more than 3 years of experience as a barista at Starbucks. I graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Nutritional Science from the University of California, Berkeley. And then, I finished the Coffee Skills Program at the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA). ugvermont.com is a website that I dedicate my whole heart to sharing all knowledge related to coffee. Read more