Garlic bread is a true delight for any garlic lover. This famous pastry is made with garlic, bread, and butter. The result is a soft, buttery, and crunchy loaf with garlic flavors that instantly improve any meal. Garlic bread is so tasty that in the rare case that there is some leftover, the last thing you’d want to do is throw it away. Unfortunately, garlic bread tends to turn stale quickly when stored the wrong way.
And the last thing you want to eat is stale garlic bread, which can adversely affect your health. Besides simply tasting horrible, you can also get food poisoning from stale garlic bread. Food poisoning from garlic is more commonly caused by poor handling of the herb at home. Therefore, it is vital to master the technique for storing garlic bread to last as long as possible.
This article will look at some of the most effective ways to store leftover garlic bread. Additionally, we will also tackle how to reheat garlic bread.
How to Store Leftover Garlic Bread the Right Way
Garlic bread is regular bread topped with garlic and butter or olive oil. Some people may also add other herbs like oregano, mozzarella, or parmesan cheese. The dough is then baked in the oven or grilled in a grill pan until golden brown, giving it a crispy crust.
Many home cooks worry about the safety of eating leftover garlic bread for good reasons.
According to the CDC, about 48 million Americans suffer foodborne illnesses yearly, making the risk serious. So what is the best way to store leftover garlic bread for freshness and safety? Generally, garlic bread will keep for 1 to 2 days if left out at room temperature, for 3 to 5 days if refrigerated, and for up to three months if frozen. Here is an in-depth guide on how to store garlic bread:
Store at Room Temperature
Since one of the main ingredients of garlic bread is butter, it is common for most people to wonder whether it can be left to stay at room temperature. The answer is yes. You can store leftover garlic bread at room temperature for up to two days. Garlic bread maintains its moist, fresh taste when stored at room temperature. With regards to the butter in it, the USDA recommends that you should use butter left to sit at room temperature within two days. Otherwise, its flavor will turn rancid.
- Start by letting your freshly baked garlic bread cool down. This part is essential because if you wrap it while still hot, it will turn soggy.
- Once completely cooled, wrap it tightly with aluminum foil or a plastic wrap. Keep the air out as it will dry up your bread.
- Finally, place the garlic bread on the counter. You should eat the bread within a day or two.
Alternatively, you can store your garlic bread in a bread box. A bread box provides a cool and dry place to store garlic bread, which helps prevent it from drying. However, it allows just enough air to circulate to maintain optimal humidity levels. Wrapping the bread in a plastic wrapper is not necessary in this case. Instead, place it as it is, ensuring the container is dry. You should keep your buttered garlic bread for up to two days. But if you’d like to keep your garlic bread for more than just a few days, consider trying these other storage methods.
Store in the Refrigerator
Storing garlic bread in the fridge provides an excellent way to extend its freshness. While keeping it at room temperature might be the best way to store your garlic bread, you might want to put it in the fridge if the weather is hot and humid. Otherwise, the butter might start turning. Garlic bread lasts about 3 to 5 days in the fridge.
Note, however, that bread stored in the refrigerator tends to dry out and might absorb other unwanted flavors if it is not tightly wrapped. So if you’d like to maintain its authentic flavors, ensure to seal it properly.
Also, note that fresh garlic bread can’t last as long as store-bought garlic bread. This is because store-bought garlic bread contains preservatives that allow it to last longer.
How to Store Garlic Bread in the Fridge
- Wrap the leftover garlic bread using a suitable plastic wrap and seal it tightly around the bread.
- Put the tightly wrapped garlic bread in a ziplock bag or transfer it into an airtight container with the lid shut.
- Place it in any compartment in the fridge.
Freeze Garlic Bread
If you’d like your cooked garlic bread to last longer than just a few days, you might want to freeze it. You can store cooked garlic bread in the freezer. Frozen garlic bread stays fresh for close to three months. Let the bread cool down first before tightly wrapping and sealing it.
How to Properly Freeze Garlic Bread
- Let your freshly baked garlic bread cool down first. This will help prevent condensation that can leave your bread soaked.
- Tightly wrap the cooled garlic bread with plastic wrap.
- Put the wrapped garlic in a food-safe freezer bag.
- Squeeze out all the air from the plastic freezer bag and seal it.
- Date the bag before storing it in the freezer.
Tightly wrapping your garlic bread in a plastic wrap is vital to avoid any trapped air that causes freezer burn.
How to Freeze Garlic Bread Slices
If you’d prefer to freeze the garlic bread in slices, you will need to modify this process slightly.
- Lay out a cookie sheet and line it with parchment paper.
- Put the slices onto the cookie sheet and space them out.
- Put the cookie sheet with the garlic bread slices into the freezer.
- Wait for the slices to freeze before taking them out of the freezer.
- Wrap each frozen slice with plastic wrap.
- Put the wrapped slices of bread into a food-safe freezer bag. Remove any excess air from the freezer bags and seal them.
- Date the bag
- Store in the freezer for about three months.
Storing Garlic Cheese Bread
We all love garlic bread, but adding melted cheese on top makes it heavenly. This creates another question, can garlic cheese bread be refrigerated? Cheesy garlic bread can only be refrigerated if it’s made with soft cheese. If the garlic bread is made with hard cheese, it can only be left at room temperature for a day or two.
How to Properly Defrost Garlic Bread
There are five effective ways to defrost your garlic bread without destroying it.
- Move the frozen bread into the fridge and wait for it to thaw.
- Place the frozen loaf of bread on the kitchen counter and wait for it to thaw.
- Put the bread into the microwave for about 20 seconds.
- Bake the frozen slices of garlic bread at 350 degrees for about two minutes.
- For a whole loaf of garlic bread, you will need to defrost it in the oven for about 10 minutes at 350 degrees.
Note that the fresher the bread at the time of freezing, the fresher it will be once you defrost it, no matter how long it stays in the freezer. Also, freezing sliced garlic bread speeds up the defrosting process. So, finally, do not freeze defrosted bread.
Can You Reheat Garlic Bread?
Yes. When stored properly, you can warm up garlic bread. That said, reheating it can be tricky as the bread can dry out and lose its quality if not done well. Fortunately for you, we have a guide on how to reheat your garlic bread. Warming garlic bread is relatively straightforward. There are multiple ways to reheat it, including:
Reheat in the Oven
This is one of the best methods for reheating your frozen garlic bread. Since you bake the garlic bread in the oven, it can revive the crispy texture of the garlic bread.
- Start by preheating the oven to 350 degrees.
- If the bread is too dry, sprinkle some water over it. This step is optional, depending on how you like your bread. The water will help create steam and remoisturize your bread. If you opt to add water, make sure the foil is rather loose to allow the moisture an escape route. Otherwise, if you do not let the steam escape, your bread will likely end up soggy.
- Wrap the leftover bread in aluminum foil. The foil helps prevent the bread’s crust from burning.
- Place the frozen garlic bread on a wire rack or a baking sheet.
- Let the bread reheat for 5 to 15 minutes, depending on its size. For example, single slices can be reheated in just 5 minutes and ready, while a full loaf might need up to 15 minutes.
- Once the estimated time lapses, check whether the garlic bread is wholly reheated. If not, place it back in the oven and add a few more minutes.
Pro tip: If you love garlic bread with a crispy crunch, remove the aluminum foil from the bread in the last 2 or 3 minutes of reheating.
Reheat Garlic Bread in a Toaster Oven
A toaster oven provides a decent substitute for an oven. When using a toaster oven to reheat your garlic bread, you can use the same method as the one in the oven.
- Set the toaster oven to 350 degrees
- Place the garlic bread on a baking sheet and put it in the toaster oven.
- Let the garlic bread reheat for about 10 minutes.
- Serve it hot with your favorite dish.
How to Reheat Garlic Bread in the Microwave?
This is the fastest way to reheat your leftover garlic bread. How?
- Place the leftover garlic bread in a microwave plate or bowl.
- Place the bowl with your garlic bread in the microwave.
- Reheat the bread for just 10 seconds. It might get hard if you put your garlic bread in the microwave for more than 10 seconds.
Note: Microwave reheated garlic bread needs to be eaten immediately. Otherwise, it tends to become hard and inedible.
Reheat Using a Stove
This is another effective way to reheat your garlic bread, leaving it nice and crispy. It is best recommended for reheating sliced or small sections of bread.
How to Warm Garlic Bread on a Stove
- Start by wrapping the leftover garlic bread with aluminum foil. The aluminum foil helps ensure the heat circulates throughout the garlic bread.
- Take a skillet big enough to fit the wrapped bread without leaving too much room. A too big pan means that it will spread out the heat.
- Place the wrapped garlic bread into a skillet.
- Cover the pan with a lid.
- Allow the bread to reheat for about 5 minutes on low heat. Too high heat will cause the bottom part of the bread to heat up a lot quicker than the top. The result is usually burnt garlic bread.
- After the five minutes lapse, take the bread from the pan to see if it has reheated all the way through. If it is not satisfactory, you can always put it back.
- Once properly reheated, serve it with your favorite dish.
Note that bigger loaves take a little longer to heat. Also, they might not heat up evenly using this method. This is why we recommend this method for sliced garlic bread.
Reheat Garlic Bread in a Frying Pan
Frying leftover garlic bread is an excellent way to get that crunchy texture. Note that this method only works for slices and not whole loaves of bread.
How to Reheat Leftover Garlic Bread in a Frying Pan
- Cut the loaf of bread into thin slices.
- Heat up the skillet on medium-high heat.
- Lightly butter the slices of bread for some extra crunchiness. This step is optional.
- Place the pieces of garlic bread down in the skillet.
- Heat each side for 2 – 3 minutes each.
Using an Air Fryer to Reheat Garlic Bread
This is another super quick and healthy way to reheat garlic bread. This method works best with slices.
How to Do It
- Preheat the air fryer to about 350 degrees.
- In one layer, place the slices of bread on the air fryer basket.
- Let the bread cook for 2 minutes.
- Check whether the bread is heated to your liking. If not, leave it for another minute.
Do not be tempted to leave your bread in the air fryer for too long, as it will turn into a brick.
How to Reheat Frozen Garlic Bread?
If you happen to have frozen your cooked garlic bread, use the oven to reheat it. Place the frozen loaf of bread on a baking sheet making sure not to cover it with foil. Bake the bread for about 20 minutes at 300 degrees.
Garlic bread goes so well with many dishes. From pasta and stews to soups, this tasty bread turns every meal into a special occasion. But if you’ve made too much to finish in one sitting, do not worry; you can store it to enjoy later. As mentioned earlier, you can refrigerate your garlic bread to enjoy it for three to five days.
If you’d like to boost its shelf life for up to three months, consider freezing it. Just remember to avoid storing your leftover garlic bread in a damp area. This is because it will turn stale.
Can I Wrap Garlic Bread in Foil Before Freezing?
Yes. You can freeze garlic bread in foil, which makes it harder o remove any air. In addition, it might cause air pockets, which should be avoided when freezing garlic bread. Plastic wraps work best as it provides an airtight seal around the bread. These wraps mold the garlic bread, which helps keep the air out. Freezer bags can also work, but you will need to work to extract as much air as possible before you zip it closed.
How Long is Uncooked Garlic Bread Good for?
Left at room temperature, uncooked garlic bread can last for a day or two. If you want it to last longer, freeze it, which can last up to 3 months.
Is It Safe to Eat Cold Garlic Bread?
It is safe to eat any leftover cooked food so long as you store it properly.
Can You Put Frozen Garlic Bread in a Toaster?
Yes. There is no need to defrost the bread first. You can put it in the toaster as is and go. It will be ready at about the same time as the fresh bread.