Last updated: August 10, 2021

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Fresh bread tastes wonderfully crunchy, but if it is not stored properly, it will be dried out, tough or mouldy after only a few days. A bread crock is the ideal remedy for this. The secret behind baked goods that stay fresh is good ventilation and moisture regulation.

The history of the bread crock goes back to antiquity. Even then, people stored their food in clay containers to keep it fresh for longer. Unglazed bread pots made of fired clay or wood can absorb and release moisture. In our product comparison, we present the most important aspects of bread pots.




Summary

  • A bread crock is a container for storing unwrapped baked goods. It regulates the humidity of the bread, which keeps it fresh longer and prevents it from moulding. Glazed bread crocks need additional ventilation holes.
  • In principle, there are three different types: bread crocks made of metal, wood or ceramic. The latter are made of clay minerals and can be glazed or unglazed. The materials can also be combined with each other.
  • Depending on the material, size and method of manufacture, the price categories of bread pots differ. A glaze also affects the cost and increases the price.

The Best Bread Crock: Our Picks

Bread Crock: Buying and rating criteria

Bread pans have different materials, shapes and properties. To help you make the right decision, we have listed important buying criteria:

These four buying criteria for bread pots are presented in detail below.

Material

Depending on the material, bread crocks can absorb and release moisture. Thus, the material determines the shelf life of the bread. Traditional bread crocks are made of unvarnished pine wood and must be cleaned by hand. The thicker wooden bread pots are, the more moisture they can absorb.

Ceramic bread crocks are made of clay minerals and are often used for baking bread. Natural terracotta is very delicate, fragile and difficult to clean due to its somewhat rough surface. Glazed ceramics such as stoneware, earthenware and porcelain or metal bread crocks are robust, odourless and tasteless.

Coating

A glaze makes the material less sensitive and waterproof. This makes glazed bread crocks easy to clean. However, this impairs moisture regulation and ventilation holes are necessary. Stoneware and porcelain are acid-resistant, water-repellent and are densely fired.

Stoneware is reminiscent of porcelain, but is produced at lower temperatures and is therefore more vulnerable. An enamel coating is particularly resistant, so you can even cut on it.

Ventilation holes

A glaze closes the pores of the surface. As a result, the bread crock can no longer regulate moisture itself and small holes for air circulation are necessary. Materials such as stainless steel also need ventilation holes.

Bread crock combinations with wooden lids are ideal because they combine the advantages of wood and coated ceramic. The wooden lid allows the bread to breathe even without ventilation holes.

Shape

The size, height and shape are crucial in the bread pot and depend on the baked goods being stored. Since breads rise during baking, it must not be too low. For elongated bread shapes, an oval storage container is a good choice. For a single household, you will need a smaller bread container than for a family. If you normally buy a round loaf of bread weighing one kilogram, you can use the outer dimensions of 40 x 30 x 20 cm as a guide.

Guide: Frequently asked questions about bread crocks answered in detail

In the following, we would like to provide you with further interesting information. Our guide answers the most important questions about bread pots.

What is a bread crock?

A bread pot is a container for storing unwrapped bread. The water contained in baked goods moves towards the crust during storage and evaporates. This releases moisture, the crust becomes soft and the inside of the bread dries out.

A bread crock provides an ideal environment for baked goods. The moisture of the bread is absorbed and released again by the pot. This keeps the bread fresh for longer and prevents moulding.

What types of bread crocks are there?

In general, there are three different types of bread pots: wooden, ceramic or metal bread pots. Ceramic pots are made glazed or unglazed and can often be used for baking or cooking.

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You can also bake, cook or store vegetables in some bread pots. The reddish-brown clay ensures cool temperatures and proper ventilation during storage. (Image source: Security / pixabay.com)

Sometimes bread pots combine different materials. A ceramic bread pot with a wooden lid can also serve as a wooden cutting board. A terracotta bread pot with an inner coating is suitable for storing vegetables.

What does a bread crock cost?

The material, size and method of manufacture determine the price. This varies between 20 and 220 euros. In addition, a glaze increases the cost, as this requires an additional work step.

Price range Available products
Low-priced (up to 40 €) Often made of metal or wood, Small bread pot, Usually glazed
Medium-priced (40 to 120 €) Made of ceramic, Partly handmade, Usually glazed
High-priced (from 120 €) Made of high-quality ceramic, Usually handmade, Large bread pot, Glazed or salt-glazed

As our table shows, even medium-priced products are of high quality. If you want to bake additional bread or value handmade ceramics, you can invest in a high-priced product.

How do I store bread in the bread crock?

If the environment becomes too moist due to the water released by the bread, mould will develop. Therefore, you should position your bread pot in a place with a constant room temperature and good air circulation. Storage in the kitchen cupboard or next to the cooker is unfavourable.

If you have found a suitable storage area, you can place the bread in your bread container without wrapping it. Cut baked goods will also keep for a long time. After one to two weeks of storage in the bread container, they will still be fresh.

How do I clean a bread crock?

Every bread pot should be cleaned regularly to ensure hygienic storage and to prevent mould. First, remove the bread crumbs and wipe out the bread pot with a damp cloth. Use warm water and a splash of vinegar for the antibacterial effect. Now let the bread pot dry out without the lid. Dishwasher-safe bread pans should only be put in the dishwasher if they are excessively dirty. Aggressive dishwasher tabs can attack the coating during cleaning.

Conclusion

Choosing the right bread pot depends on the amount of bread and baked goods you eat, the material and the intended use. If you want to use your bread pot for food storage and baking, you should choose a ceramic pot. Often, the look and feel also determine the right model.

Some people find natural terracotta beautiful, others prefer smooth ceramic, metal or wood. The bread pots can be colourfully decorated with glazes on the outer wall. Bread pots in the mid-price segment are of good quality and can often be used flexibly. If you want a handmade, unique piece, you will have to pay more.

Image source: unsplash / flavourate_com

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