Muffins can retain their soft, just-baked texture for longer than a day. Air exposure causes baked goods to dry out and develop a stale flavor, so keeping muffins fresh for longer requires proper preparation and packaging. You can keep muffins fresh for up to three months depending on your preferred storage method.
Baking and Cooling
Extending the storage life of muffins begins before you put them in the oven. Using paper, foil or silicone muffin liners in the pan leaves less of the baked good exposed to air during storage, so the muffins stay fresh and don't dry out. After baking, cool the muffins completely on a wire rack. Wrapping warm muffins leads to moisture evaporation and condensation, resulting in a dry interior and soggy exterior. Avoid cooling muffins in the pan. A wire rack allows air to circulate freely around the muffins so they cool evenly and don't become soggy.
Wrap and Store
Muffins, like most baked goods, require proper packaging to stay fresh. Air exposure is the main cause of a short shelf life. Wrap muffins individually in plastic wrap or foil, and then package them in a zip-top bag. Press as much air out of the bag as possible before sealing it closed. You can store wrapped muffins at room temperature for up to two days with minimal loss of freshness.
Keep Them Cool
Refrigeration helps keep the muffins fresh for at least one week. If your muffins contain ingredients that may spoil at room temperature, such as cream frosting, refrigerator storage is a must. For best storage in the fridge, wrap the muffins and seal them in a zip-top bag. A plastic food storage container also works well. Avoid storing the muffins near pungent foods, such as those containing garlic or onions, because they may absorb the flavors.
Muffins stored in a 0-degree Fahrenheit freezer retain much of their fresh flavor for two to three months. Air exposure is more of a concern in the freezer because any exposed muffin will quickly dry out in the cold, dry environment. Wrap the muffins tightly and package them in a freezer storage bag with the air pressed out, or in a tightly sealed container. Thaw the muffins at room temperature before serving. If the muffins seem slightly dry, warming them up often makes them soft again.
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