How long does YOUR sourdough bread last before going mouldy?

I'm wondering how long it takes for Your sourdough bread to go stale/mouldy/off?

What kind of starter do you use?
What's your usual bread recipe?
How do you store it, on the counter, in plastic, fridge, cloth, bread box, &c.?
Do you take any special steps to make it last longer?

I have a 1 year old rye starter, and use a pretty basic recipe (starter, water, unbleached flour, salt and sometimes malted grain - 2 slow rises, bake 400 for 45 min, round loaves). My bread lasts about 2 weeks on the counter, in a plastic bag before it begins to mould, longer if uncut. It does start to taste stale after a 10 days or so, but is fine if toasted. I take an extra step after baking to dry it a little bit more, I wrap it in a tightly woven cotton/linen towel over night, then unwrap it, place it in plastic bread bag whole, to be sliced on demand. If I don't do this step, it usually won't last as long.

So... is this normal? How long does YOUR loaf last? What is it that makes the difference?



Mroo March 8, 2020
My sourdough bread lasts over a week with no signs of mold. Usually I stop eating off of it at 7 days but that’s just out of preference. At twelve days still not a speck of mold but I tossed it as I had made a fresh one.
My bread “loaf” recipe is half white and half wheat flour and also contains a tablespoon of honey. I like to blame the longevity on the antimicrobial and antifungal properties of the starter and honey. 😊
I just store it in an airtight ziploc bag after I am certain it is cooled. My home is in the PNW so it is interesting that this bread stays free of mold for so long.
boulangere January 28, 2013
If I know I won't use up a loaf within 5 days, I cut it in half and freeze one half. Usually, though, I make sure it is completely cool before enclosing it in a plastic bag which I keep in a bread box locked with a bungee cord. I have 2 border collies - enough said? After I go to bed tonight, they'll probably be on looking up engineering specs. I digress. I live in a dry, make that extremely dry, climate, so mold is rarely an issue.
bugbitten January 28, 2013
Three days, maybe four is my experience. There are lots of threads on molding of bread if you search the archive.
aargersi January 28, 2013
My brother brought me my starter - I keep her in the fridge (her name is Amelia) and I feed her twice with equal parts AP flour and water before using her. Honestly - I have no idea how long it lasts because we usually eat it within a couple days. I have been making the Lahey Almost No Knead recipe more than any others - reliable and delicious!!
hardlikearmour January 28, 2013
I've had it last a week w/o molding in a plastic bag, but haven't tried for longer. My kitchen in the winter is about 68-70º F. My starter uses a mix of all-purpose and whole-wheat flours, and is an 80% hydration starter. I assume primary differences are temperature, moisture level, and acidity of the final bread.
Author Comment
Any homemade bread, not just sourdough, will not last like some commercial breads due to not having preservatives. How long they last depends on a variety of factors: temperature, humidity, type of bread, how it is stored.
I'm a little concerned that you wrap your bread in a towel. Do you do this while it is still warm? If so it will steam the loaf and may actually increase molding. Bread should be allowed to cool on a wire rack with good air circulation until it is completely cool. Putting it in a bag or wrapping it while it is still warm will steam it and trap moisture, providing a better environment for mold.
Our breads last fine at room temperature in the winter. We also use a bamboo bread box to store them. Generally we just make 1 loaf at a time and it gets eaten before it goes moldy. In summer, we put it in the refrigerator.
This website has a lot of good information and can answer questions in all matters regarding things baked:
trampledbygeese January 28, 2013
I wrap the bread when it's almost cool, somewhere between body temp and room temp. Being cotton or linen, the natural fibres allow the bread to breath overnight without letting the crust get too hard.
trampledbygeese January 28, 2013
But I have to say, I'm more interested in how long YOUR SOURDOUGH bread lasts and what variables in people's home effect this. I already know a lot about the science already, but I'm more interested in anecdotal evidence. Science is all well and good, but we got to remember that people are individuals - that's where things get interesting for me.

Sourdough has a whole different acid profile than other home made breads, which effects mould, moisture, &c. For this reason, it's difficult to compare any other method of bread making to those made with sourdough starter as the main leavening component.

But thank you for the link, it is a good source of info.
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