The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Storing challah or other soft breads

cdnDough's picture

Storing challah or other soft breads

Can anyone advise on what the best way to store a braided challah or other softer bread?  I'm planning on baking it tomorrow (Tuesday) but would like it to still be edible on Christmas morning (Thursday).  I'm usually a sourdough baker and 2-3 days is no trouble for most of my loafs.

Eli's picture

Have you ever tried Maggie Glezer's Challah. It is much better the second day and it you allow it to cool completely before cutting it will last 5 or so days. mine does. I also place it, once cooled, into a plastic bag. I don't recommend that for a crusty bread, The only other way I know is to freeze it as soon as it cools and take it out early.

Good luck and Happy Holidays!




cdnDough's picture

I'm actually a Challah noob... I'm going out on a limb and baking it for christmas without having pracitced. My current plan is to use the recipe from the BBA.

caryn's picture

I have frequently made challah ahead using any number of recipes, and I find that freezing it (well wrapped, of course) when completely cool works very well. On Wednesday before you retire, just take it out of the freezer and leave it to thaw at rooom temperature. Then, depending on how you would like to serve it, you can then warm it in a low to moderate oven. It will then taste freshly baked.

You could of course just leave it out well wrapped at room temperature, without freezing it and still refresh it by warming it in the oven just before your meal.

What I would not advise is refrigerating it.

Good luck with your challah. I hope it turns out really well!

Eli's picture

gotcha! You will be surprised how easy. It never last around here but I have frozen with success. With the egg wash I think you are better off stashing in a plastic bag either in the freezer or at room temp. Wait and see if anyone else has any suggestions. Oh, you may try contacting Sharon at She sells them and probably has great thoughts on keeping properties.



Wisecarver's picture
Wisecarver (not verified)

I agree...If you use an egg wash and or honey let it cool then bag it and into the driest section of your fridge.

Do not let it absorb tastes or moisture from the fridge.

I cool Challah on coated wire racks with a bamboo towel covering it for 2 hours.
Try to not touch the bread as it goes into a new 2 gallon plastic storage bag.
(You want to eliminate growth in the fridge. This keeps it fresh.)

btw, Bamboo towels are great for shaping breads too. Love them.

arzajac's picture

I have had a lot of success with making the dough, braiding it, letting it rise for a half an hour and then putting it in the fridge for a few days.  The flavour is actually better and it cooks in the same amount of time.

It will continue to rise a little in the fridge and you can preheat your oven and put it in straight from the fridge.  It's easier to apply the egg-wash onto cold dough anyway, with less risk of creating imperfections on the surface.

If you have enough time to do that on the day of, you will end up with a much better end-product, in my opinion.


ema2two's picture

I bake 5-lbs of flour batches of challah every 1-2 weeks.  What we don't use goes in the freezer, and it keeps very well.  Seal it well when you freeze it.  Many challah bakers have their favorite techniques--some like wrapping in foil then placing in zip-top freezer bags, others just use the freezer bags.  The keys are to freeze as soon as it's fully cooled, but not before.  Get as much of the air out of the bags as you can.

You can retard the dough and give it a short time to come to room temperature/final proof and bake it the morning you want to use it.  I have done this successfully with several doughs, but with Glezer's lihtuanian challah dough (commercial yeast version) it comes out very, very well.

Wisecarver's picture
Wisecarver (not verified)

...That's a lot of Challah...Mazel Tov!

earvinjames123's picture

I don't recommend that for a crusty bread, The only other way I know is to freeze it as soon as it cools and take it out early.

Earvin James