What Is a Bread Box?

Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison

A bread box is a container used for the storage of bread and other baked goods. A bread box is designed for the purpose of keeping bread fresh while helping to maintain uncluttered kitchen surfaces. Typically, these boxes are very tightly sealed. When they work as intended, they trap moisture and prevent bread from becoming stale too quickly. They can also be helpful in keeping bread and other baked goods safe from pests, such as mice.

Bread with sesame seeds in it.
Bread with sesame seeds in it.

Often, individuals choose to store bread in refrigerators, thinking that keeping it cold will lock in moisture and prevent it from going stale. Unfortunately, the opposite often occurs and bread stored in the refrigerator may begin going stale after just one day. This is due to the fact that moisture loss doesn't really cause bread to go stale. Staleness is caused by retrogradation, a process by which starch molecules crystallize. Retrogradation occurs much faster in the cold temperatures of normal refrigeration, making the refrigerator a poor choice for storing bread.

A bread box will be designed to keep bread as fresh as possible.
A bread box will be designed to keep bread as fresh as possible.

Instead of refrigerating bread to keep it fresh, it is best to store it at room temperature in a container designed to retain moisture, such as a bread box. There are many types on the market, allowing consumers to find models that fit just about any kitchen decor and personal style preference. There are models made of wood, acrylic, ceramic, enamel, stoneware and stainless steel. These boxes come with many different types of lids as well, including hinged, roll-top, handled, lift-off and drop-down versions. Consumers can even find bread boxes with handy attachments, such as pull-out bread boards.

When you’re in the market for a bread box, it is wise to consider the amount of space you have in your kitchen. There are a wide variety of space-saver models that require only a limited amount of space on a counter, tabletop, or shelf. Keep in mind that some bread box models only hold one loaf of bread. If you have a large family, you may do well to consider purchasing a larger model or an expandable variety. You can even find clear bread box versions, a smart idea for those given to forgetting what they have stored in containers.

Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison

Nicole’s thirst for knowledge inspired her to become a wiseGEEK writer, and she focuses primarily on topics such as homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. When not writing or spending time with her four children, Nicole enjoys reading, camping, and going to the beach.

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Discussion Comments


My grandmother used to keep a wooden roll down bread box in her kitchen. She made her own bread and would store it in the bread box so that it could be eaten the next day. Sometimes she kept cupcakes and cookies in there too. But those didn't last for long because we would always finish them!

That bread box was enough for my grandmother but it's not enough anymore. We have a pretty big one in the kitchen and we keep a variety of breads and rolls in there.

I don't make bread and my husband and my kids like different kinds of bread. So I always have two or three different ones at home all the time, plus bread rolls for dinner. Our bread box has to fit them all in.

I do like the look of the older style wooden roll downs like my grandmother used. But there is no way I could fit all my bread in there.


Using the fridge to store bread may not stave off staleness, but it helps keep it from getting moldy, if, like us, you take a while to finish a loaf. Especially if you live in a warm and or humid climate.


Nice article! Thank you!

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