If you haven’t tried milk bread, we recommend making it your next baking adventure. It’s simple and creates the softest, fluffiest bread that’ll stay fresh for days. It uses a Japanese technique called tangzhong that pre-cooks a portion of your flour so that the flour is able to absorb more liquid. As complicated as that may sound, it’s as easy as simmering flour and milk together on your stove for a few minutes.

The process of making milk bread is slightly different than that of regular bread, so how do you store milk bread?

How To Keep Milk Bread Fresh

1. Take the bread out of the pan right after baking. If you leave it to cool in the pan, it may lead to soggy bread that just doesn’t feel right. Instead, dump the bread onto a cooling rack and let it cool completely before cutting.

2. Store your cooled bread in an air-tight container on the counter. Like any other bread, it’s not recommended to keep milk bread in the fridge. The cold air actually negatively affects the starch molecules and causes bread to go stale faster. As far as breads go, milk bread has a pretty good longevity on the counter. It should stay good for up to a week.

3. If you’re not going to finish your milk bread within a week, freeze it. Slice it up, put the slices in a freezer bag, and they’ll stay good for a couple months. When you’re ready to eat the bread, you can toast a frozen slice like normal.

Milk bread rolls made with green onions in pan.
Milk bread rolls baked with green onions.

How To Store Milk Bread Dough

If you make the dough ahead of time, but aren’t ready to cook it yet, you can store it in the fridge in a sealed container. It’s best to slightly oil or flour the container so the dough doesn’t stick to it. Depending on how eager you are to eat the bread, storing the dough in the fridge for a day may be a good thing. This is a classic slow rising technique that allows the bread to retain more flavor than a quick rise on the counter.

How To Store Tangzhong

If you have leftover tangzhong, or just prefer to make it ahead of time, you can store cooled tangzhong in the fridge in an air-tight container for a day or two. When you’re ready to use it, it’s best to let it warm to room temperature before adding it to the other ingredients.

Milk bread is a really tasty, versatile, and easy to make. You can apply that tangzhong technique to almost any bread recipe to give it that extra fluffiness. And as an added bonus, it’ll store very well on the counter!

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