How long does a 1lb bag of coffee last?

A 1 pound bag of coffee will last the average coffee drinker about 2 weeks. However, exactly how long a 1lb bag lasts depends on a few key factors:

How much coffee you drink per day

The most important factor in determining how long a 1lb bag will last is how much coffee you drink per day. The typical 1lb bag contains around 200 tablespoons of ground coffee. If you use 2 tablespoons per 6oz cup of coffee, that means a 1lb bag contains enough for around 100 6oz cups.

So if you drink just 1 6oz cup per day, a 1lb bag would last you about 3 months. If you drink 2 cups per day, it would last around 6 weeks. At 3 cups per day, you’re looking at around 2 weeks or 14 days.

Here’s a rough estimate of how long a 1lb bag will last based on daily consumption:

Cups per day Tablespoons per day Days a 1lb bag will last
1 2 100
2 4 50
3 6 33
4 8 25
5 10 20

As you can see, the more cups of coffee you drink per day, the faster you’ll go through a 1lb bag.

Coffee brewing method

Different coffee brewing methods use different amounts of coffee grounds per cup. So the brew method you use also affects how long a bag will last.

Drip coffee makers tend to use around 2 tablespoons of ground coffee per 6oz cup. French press and pour over methods often use a bit more, around 2 1/2 tablespoons per 6oz cup. And espresso shots use much less ground coffee – usually 1 tablespoon or less per 2oz shot.

So if you exclusively drink espresso-based drinks, you can expect a 1lb bag of coffee to last longer than someone who mainly brews drip coffee.

Reusing coffee grounds

Some coffee drinkers reuse their grounds to get a little more out of their coffee supply. Methods like cold brewing or “rebrewing” used coffee grounds can stretch out a bag of coffee further.

However, reusing grounds does sacrifice some freshness and flavor. The decision comes down to personal preference.

Coffee bean roast level

The roast level of the coffee beans can also impact how many cups of coffee can be brewed from a 1lb bag.

Darker roasts tend to be less dense than lighter roasts, as more moisture is roasted out of the beans. So you may get slightly less ground coffee by volume from dark roast beans compared to light roast. The difference is modest though.

Grinding your own beans

Grinding your own whole coffee beans instead of buying pre-ground coffee will help your supply last a little bit longer. Whole beans start losing aroma and flavor once ground, so grinding beans right before brewing preserves freshness.

If you buy pre-ground coffee, you’ll experience more flavor degradation over time compared to grinding whole beans fresh. So grinding your own beans allows you to get the full lifespan out of your 1lb bag.

Storing coffee properly

Properly storing your coffee is key to preserving freshness and preventing coffee from going stale before you finish the bag. Keeping coffee beans or grounds in a cool, dark, dry place in an airtight container helps maintain flavor and aroma.

Storing coffee in the refrigerator is not recommended, as the moisture can lead to deterioration. Freezing small portions of beans or grounds can extend freshness though.

Buying high quality coffee

Higher quality coffee that is freshly roasted and properly stored after roasting will maintain its flavor longer than lower quality coffee. So purchasing from reputable roasters that provide a roast date can help extend how long coffee tastes good for.

If the coffee you buy is already nearly stale when you purchase it, you’ll experience flavor degradation much faster once you open the bag.

Using an airtight container

Once you open a bag of coffee, transferring it to an airtight container helps keep oxygen out and preserve freshness. Oxygen speeds up the staling process.

Any container with an airtight seal works well. Mason jars are commonly used coffee canisters. And there are many coffee containers designed specifically for storing beans and grounds.

Adding a roast date

Writing the roast date on the bag once you receive your coffee can help you keep track of its age. Use a permanent marker to legibly write the date on the bag.

This allows you to monitor the freshness and use the older coffee first. As a general rule, coffee begins losing flavor around 3-4 weeks off roast.

Buying smaller bags

Consider buying coffee in 12oz or 16oz bags instead of 1lb bags if going through coffee slowly. Smaller bags ensure you’re getting through the coffee before it loses freshness.

Just keep in mind that smaller bags tend to cost more per ounce of coffee.

Freezing coffee

If you find you can’t use up coffee fast enough before it goes stale, consider freezing a portion of the bag. Place the desired amount in an airtight freezer bag or container.

Take out portions as needed and let them thaw before using. Coffee can be frozen for 2-3 months while retaining flavor.

Comparing whole bean and ground coffee

Whole bean coffee will maintain its optimal flavor longer than pre-ground coffee. Once the beans are ground, more surface area is exposed to oxygen which accelerates deterioration.

So if ensuring the longest lasting coffee from a 1lb bag, opt for whole beans. But keep in mind you’ll need to grind them yourself before brewing.

In summary:

How Much Coffee You Drink

The more coffee you drink per day, the faster a 1lb bag will be used up. Around 2-3 cups per day is common for a 1lb bag to last 2 weeks.

Brew Method

Drip coffee uses around 2 tablespoons per cup. French press and pour over use a bit more at 2 1/2 tbsp per cup. Espresso uses less.

Reusing Grounds

Methods like cold brew and “rebrewing” can extend the lifespan of a bag of coffee but sacrifice some freshness.

Coffee Roast Level

Darker roasts have slightly less mass than lighter roasts. But the difference is minor.

Grinding Beans

Grinding your own whole beans preserves freshness compared to pre-ground coffee.

Proper Storage

Store beans and grounds in a cool, dark place in an airtight container to maintain freshness.

Coffee Quality

High quality, freshly roasted coffee will last longer than lower quality coffee.

Airtight Containers

Transferring to an airtight container after opening extends lifespan.

Roast Dates

Write the roast date on the bag to monitor freshness. Coffee starts losing flavor 3-4 weeks after roasting.

Smaller Bags

Opt for 12oz or 16oz bags if you use coffee slowly. But they cost more per ounce.


Freezing portions of coffee can prolong freshness for 2-3 months.

Whole vs Ground

Whole beans last longer than pre-ground. But you need to grind them yourself.

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