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How to store snacks, baked goods, and crackers

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Whether you’re keeping baked goods at room temperature or freezing them, make sure they’re tightly wrapped or in an airtight container, with the following exceptions: Dairy-based cakes and pies, such as cheesecake and lemon cream pie, and cookies with uncooked dairy fillings, like whipped cream or cream cheese, should go into the refrigerator. Bakery-style breads and baguettes should be kept in their original packaging (an airtight bag will turn crusts soggy) at room temperature; if freezing, transfer to a resealable freezer bag. Any crackers or snack foods that don’t disappear within a couple of days will also stay fresh longer in an airtight container or bag.

Baked Goods

Bagels
Pantry: 2 days
Freezer: 3 months

Baguette
Pantry: 1 day
Freezer: 3 weeks

Biscotti
Pantry: 2 weeks
Freezer: 6 months

Biscuit dough, store-bought in can
Refrigerator: Until use-by date
Freezer: Do not freeze.

Bread, bakery loaf
Pantry: 2 days
Freezer: 3 weeks

Bread, sandwich loaf
Pantry: 4 days
Refrigerator: 2 weeks
Freezer: 3 months

Brownies—supermarket, bakery, and homemade
Pantry: 2 weeks (supermarket); 5 days (bakery and homemade)
Refrigerator: 1 month
Freezer: 3 months

*Real Simple consulted the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), food scientists, food manufacturers, and a host of other experts—including fishmongers, cheese sellers, coffee roasters, bakers, and bartenders—to establish these storage guidelines. The first consideration was safety. But because you want your food to be delicious, too, for some products, Real Simple chose the conservative storage time for optimum freshness.

Cakes, bakery and homemade
Pantry: 2 days (angel food and sponge); 3 days (pound, chocolate, and yellow)
Refrigerator: 1 week
Freezer: 3 months
Tip: Freeze cake unfrosted when possible.

Cakes, supermarket
Pantry: 4 days
Refrigerator: 1 week
Freezer: 3 months

Cookie dough, homemade
Refrigerator: 5 days
Freezer: 3 months

Cookie dough, store-bought
Refrigerator: Until use-by date
Freezer: 2 months

Cookies, bakery and homemade
Pantry: 1 week
Refrigerator: 2 weeks
Freezer: 3 months

Cookies, supermarket
Pantry: 2 months (unopened); 1 month (open)
Freezer: 6 months

English muffins
Pantry: 5 days
Refrigerator: 2 weeks
Freezer: 3 months

Muffins
Pantry: 3 days
Refrigerator: 1 week
Freezer: 2 months

Piecrusts, homemade
Refrigerator: 3 days
Freezer: 3 months

Piecrusts, store-bought refrigerated and frozen
Refrigerator: Until use-by date
Freezer: 2 months

Pies, dairy
such as Key lime pie, banana cream pie, and cheesecake
Refrigerator: 4 days
Freezer: Do not freeze.

Pies, fruit
Pantry: 2 days
Refrigerator: 1 week
Freezer: Do not freeze.

Pita bread
Pantry: 5 days
Refrigerator: 1 week
Freezer: 3 months

Tortillas, refrigerated
Refrigerator: 1 week
Freezer: 3 months

Tortillas, shelf-stable
Pantry: 1 week
Refrigerator: 2 weeks
Freezer: 3 months

Crackers and Snacks

Corn chips
Pantry: 3 months (unopened); 2 weeks (open)

Crackers
Pantry: 3 months (unopened); 2 weeks (open)

Granola bars
Pantry: 3 months

Pita chips
Pantry: 3 months (unopened); 1 week (open)

Potato chips
Pantry: 3 months (unopened); 2 weeks (open)

Pretzels
Pantry: 3 months (unopened); 2 weeks (open)

Get more shopping and storing tips here

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