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A bread box may seem like an outdated piece of kitchenware, but the option to store fresh-baked bread in something other than an unsightly plastic bag is attractive. Bread boxes offer a convenient storage solution that helps preserve the freshness of your loaves for a longer period of time. There is no question about refrigeration or lack of pantry room—the bread has its place.
Whether you got on the sourdough bread-baking train or want a convenient solution for where to put baked goods, a bread box offers a dark, cool place to keep your baguettes crusty and banana bread supple. And, the available styles fit any kitchen design from farmhouse to modern.
From hardwoods to brightly colored vintage styles, these are the best bread boxes.
Best Wooden: Williams Sonoma Olivewood Bread Box
Easy to clean
Roomy internal storage
This bread box combines function and aesthetics with its richly grained exterior and sliding acrylic door, which offers clear views and easy access. The graceful lines combined with its sturdy construction make it a great choice for the modern kitchen. It's crafted from tightly grained, dense, moisture-resistant olive wood, a hardwood sourced from Olea europaea trees.
The sliding lid makes it easy to know when bread needs to go on the grocery list, and the acrylic material is a cinch to clean. The ample interior allows for plenty of bread, bagel, and muffin storage, allowing for tidy countertops. The gorgeous wood grain and smooth finish add a touch of elegance to your kitchen, and it cleans easily with a damp cloth. To ensure the beautiful finish stays lovely, an occasional rub of mineral oil will restore the shine and moisturize the wood.
Size: 15 x 9.5 x 7.5 inches | Material: Solid olive wood with acrylic door
Best Farmhouse: Creative Co-Op Enameled Metal Bread Box
Easy to clean
Roomy internal storage
Not ideal for hot climates
Bottom can scratch some surfaces
If you spend your days dreaming of Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia Table kitchen, this is the model for you. The rustic farmhouse charm of The Creative Co-Op Bread Box is complete with an aluminum structure finished with distressed white paint finish and blocky black typography. Like all things farmhouse-inspired, the paint and finish may vary from product to product to ensure that rustic look.
It is attractive, but the functionality cannot be ignored. The deep well and high sides allow space to accommodate more than just a standard loaf of bread. It can double as your bagel box, a spot for recipes, or even small baked goods, like muffins, without squashing anything. The side and top handles make for convenient portability, and the enameled-finish wipes clean easily with a damp sponge.
Size: 13.5 x 8.25 x 12 inches | Material: Aluminum
Best Vintage-Inspired: Culinary Couture Large Turquoise Bread Box
Durable and rust-resistant
Generous storage capacity
Not ideal for hot climates
Culinary Couture’s toolbox-style bread box is the thing of retro-enthusiast dreams. The glossy, powder-coated stainless steel construction offers a durable, rust-resistant storage option for bread and baked goods. And, the high-polished exterior comes in a variety of fun colors, like bright turquoise and deep purple.
One of the greatest features of this model are the ventilation holes in the back of the lid; they allow good airflow, which slows mold. The front lid has hinges to ensure firm closure, the interior storage capacity is generous, and it comes with an ebook of bread-making recipes and tips.
Size: 16.5 x 9 x 6.5 inches | Material: Stainless steel
Best Large: Home-It Stainless Steel Bread Box
Lid has a tight seal
Stainless steel lid is thin
The Home-It Stainless Steel Bread Box features a cavernous interior coupled with a roll-top door that smoothly opens and closes and seals tightly. Add to that the sleek stainless steel construction and you have the recipe for a great bread box. Sometimes a metal storage container can leave scratches on countertops or other surfaces, but this model has a plastic bezel that protects against wear and tear.
Beyond the beauty of this contemporary model is the benefit of venting holes to control air circulation and keep humidity at bay. The dark interior ensures bread stays cool and maintains freshness longer. And, stainless steel does not absorb odors, so baked goods will always taste fresh. Cleanup is easy with a quick wipe-down from a damp cloth. Be sure to dry immediately to maintain that shiny finish longer.
Size: 16.5 x 7 x 10 inches | Material: Stainless steel
Best Stainless Steel: Brabantia Medium Roll Top Bread Box
Partially flat top for extra storage
Noise dampening closure
Only fits one standard loaf
Intuitive design is the hallmark of the Brabantia Medium Roll Top Bread Box. It features a flat back that sits flush against the wall, a knobbly bottom to ensure good air circulation for bread longevity, and a partially flat top that allows for stackability. Couple all that with the noise-dampening design (close the roll top without a sound!), and you have a worthy box for bread, bagels, or muffins.
This Cradle-to-Cradle Certified model offers storage for a standard loaf of bread, and it’s constructed from 38 percent recycled materials, making it a great choice for the environment. It's easy to clean with a quick swipe of a damp cloth, and the stainless steel finish is gorgeous, but if you're in the market for something different, it also comes in other colors, including crisp white.
Size: 10.43 x 12.44 x 6.81 inches | Material: Stainless steel
Best Bamboo: Klee Large Bamboo Bread Box
Sits flush against the wall
Large internal storage
Lid can stick in humid climates
This honey-colored bread box is made entirely of bamboo. The hardwood construction incorporates a flat top for extra storage options, sits flat against the wall, and has a smooth-gliding, roll-top lid. The lid slides back inside the box for maximum interior capacity.
The generous storage allows for versatility. You can store a couple loaves of bread, some muffins, and small baked goods. It's easy to clean, too. Like other wood products, wipe clean with mild soap and water, and then dry completely. An occasional rub of mineral oil will help this bamboo beauty stay strong for years to come.
Size: 15.8 x 10.8 x 6.8 inches | Material: Bamboo
Best Ceramic: A.C.K. Trading Co. Tuscany Fleur De Lis Bread Box
Lid fits well
Easy to clean
Ceramic does not absorb odors
Ceramic can chip easily
This glazed ceramic bread box transports your kitchen countertop to a small village in France with its vintage, hand-painted yellow exterior adorned with the Fleur de Lis symbol. The rectangular shape makes it easy to fit on a counter, and the ceramic construction will not absorb odors, so artisan breads always taste fresh.
The lid sits securely atop the base, and this model is dishwasher safe. But, as with any hand-painted items, hand wash is recommended for longevity of the finish. This compact, stylish bread box makes an attractive addition to any kitchen arsenal.
Size: 6.98 x 13.2 x 9 inches | Material: Ceramic
If you're looking for a bread box to maximize the longevity of baked goods, we recommend the Home-It because it has a dark, cavernous interior and lots of ventilation to keep bread fresh longer. If you want a little bit of retro on the counter with a secure closure, choose the Culinary Couture Bread Box.
What to Look for in a Bread Box
As with any countertop kitchen tool, size is an important consideration. If you have plenty of free-standing counter space, going big is an option, but if you live in a home with a cozy kitchen, you must be frugal with your space. You may want to go for something that sits flush against the wall or possibly hangs.
Another size consideration is how much bread and baked goods you need to store. If you have a large family that consumes more than a couple loaves a week, you want to opt for a larger model to save trips to the grocery store. If it's just you, a large container might be a waste of space. Basically, you should look for a bread box that will be ample enough to store all your bread or baked goods and get them off the counter.
In the grand scheme of bread box design, differences mainly come in the lid. The roll-up lids allow you more use of the interior storage because the lid slides up into the box. Hinged models take more space to open, but often offer a more secure closure. Cutting board styles are multitaskers, but often only come in wood.
One consideration when shopping is ventilation. A bread box that allows air to circulate will keep your bread fresher longer and combat mold.
Bread boxes come in many materials. The most common are stainless steel, wood, ceramic, and metal. The choice really depends on your kitchen decor and your desires for functionality.
Stainless boxes tend to be modern looking and extremely durable. Wooden models have a warmth to their aesthetic, but you have to be careful of climate conditions as they can absorb humidity. Ceramic is great for dry climates where baked goods need moisture, but often lack ventilation and are easier to break. Metals, such as aluminum, often offer a vintage look, but can sometimes scratch countertops.
Why use a bread box?
Artisan baked goods have brought back the need for bread boxes. For so long, bread has been laden with preservatives and wrapped in plastic to ensure long-lasting bread free of mold, but with the onslaught of baking bread at home and seeking out bakeries for their fresh goods, a solution to keep our crust crisp and inside moist is necessary.
Enter the bread box. It prevents your goods from degrading because of swings in temperatures. Keeping bread at room temperature maintains the starch and prevents it from hardening. They also discourage pests. Bread boxes create a barrier a plastic sleeve can never match. Though it may be tempting to just put your bread in the refrigerator, don’t do it. Refrigeration causes bread to lose its flavor and sometimes causes hardening. In other words, it goes stale faster.
Beyond the benefits to the bread, boxes free up counter space. Say goodbye to errant plastic bags of bread cluttering your kitchen, and the larger boxes can even hold bagels and cookies.
How do you store bread in a bread box?
If it came in a plastic sleeve, take it out. Plastic makes circulation difficult and encourages mold to grow. If your bread is homemade, make sure it has cooled before moving it to the box. This will keep condensation from occurring and hastening spoilage. If your bread or baked goods come in a paper bag that is open, you can keep it in there and just set them in the box. The open ends will allow air to flow.
Do you need to clean a bread box?
Simply put, yes. Most bread boxes only require a quick wipe from a damp sponge, but you want to make sure there are no little bits of food left in the bread box for insects or other pests to find. You also want to avoid a situation where the humidity has caused moisture or mold spores to grow. Periodic cleaning will alleviate that issue. Be sure to look at the manufacturer's instructions as some materials need to be dried immediately or occasionally rubbed with mineral oil.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
Carrie Honaker is a food writer who loves a crusty loaf of bread. As a restaurateur and avid home cook, she has baked thousands of loaves of bread and knows the importance of storing it in the proper container to ensure freshness. Her work has appeared in many publications, including Bon Appetit, Allrecipes, and Wine Enthusiast.