Do you ever find yourself standing in the coffee aisle, wondering which bag of beans to buy?

Once you’ve decided, what do you do next? That’s right, it’s time to open up your bag!

Opening a coffee bag isn’t as easy as it looks; there are certain steps to ensure its potential into full-flavored goodness and keep those coffee beans fresh.

Quick Answer: How do you open coffee bags?

You can open coffee bags by tearing them open along the zipper or by cutting the coffee bag open with scissors, which you can later close with the tin tie.

How to Open Coffee Bags the Right Way (Quick & Easy)

In this article, it’s time to explore how to open your coffee bags easily without wasting any precious bean banging against the countertop or spilling those grounds all over yourself (and your kitchen!).

Read on for some quick & easy tips so you can savor every bit of flavor from these heavenly coffee beans!

Which coffee bags are there?

There are a few different kinds of coffee bags out there. The most popular type of coffee bag is valve-sealed and comes in a few varieties.

Valve-sealed bags feature an airtight seal, which allows for a long shelf life and ensures that your beans remain as fresh as possible!

These lightweight foil packets come with a valve that opens when pressed down on; this releases carbon dioxide gases generated by roasted coffee beans while keeping out oxygen and other unwanted elements.

Along with the valve, which most coffee bags have, there are two main types of coffee bags:

  • Coffee bags with a zipper that needs to be torn open (and can be closed fully after).
  • Coffee bags that needs to be cut open and can be closed with the tin tie provided.

Here is what they look like when unopened and closed:

How to open coffee bags easily

Opening coffee bags can be easy and satisfying – if you know the right technique. Here’s how to open a coffee bag with a tin tie that is completely sealed:

  1. Start by squeezing out as much of the air as possible.
  2. Now, take a sharp pair of scissors and cut above the tin tie lengthwise.
  3. Remove the part you’ve cut off and throw this out.
  4. The coffee bag will now be opened and can be easily closed or transferred to a container of choice.

If you have a coffee bag with a zipper, you can follow the steps below:

  1. Squeeze as much of the air out of the coffee bag.
  2. Grab the small plastic lip that displays “open.” This is usually on the upper-left side.
  3. Slowly and gently tear the strip until it’s completely removed.
  4. You can now open and close the coffee bag as you please.
A comparison between an open and closed bag of coffee beans.
Unopened coffee bag on the left. Opened coffee bag on the right

Now that you know how to open coffee bags properly, you’ll also need to reseal them at some point to keep your coffee fresh. More on this below!

How do you reseal opened coffee bags?

Removing as much air as possible is best to properly reseal an opened coffee bag.

You can gently press the air out of the coffee bag, ensuring you’re not spilling coffee beans or ground coffee.

If you’ve got a coffee bag with a tin tie, you can use this to help close the bag easily:

Coffee bag with that has been opened and can closed using the tin tie.

Fold the top part of the coffee bag as much as possible to keep the most air out.

Then, fold the tin tie’s edges along the coffee bean bag. You’ve now correctly closed your bag of coffee!

The coffee that features a zipper is much easier to close. You have to make sure to stick both sides of the opening to each other. It’s that easy:

An opened bag of coffee beans that can be resealed using the plastic seal.

How do you store coffee beans?

Storing coffee beans is essential for preserving their flavor and preventing them from going stale.

Once you’ve opened a bag of coffee beans, the best way to store them is in an airtight container.

This can be ceramic or plastic, but the important thing is that it has a tight seal to keep out light and moisture.

Fresh coffee beans in a mason jar.

If you leave the beans in their original bag, make sure to fold over the top of it and clip it together as tightly as possible before storing it away.

This helps preserve freshness by preventing any oxygen from entering. It’s also beneficial if your container or bag isn’t completely opaque so that light won’t hit your beans directly, as this can lead to oxidation, which affects flavor negatively.

When done correctly, you should be able to store your freshly roasted coffee beans for around six weeks before any noticeable loss of aroma.

In proper storage conditions, whole bean aromatic freshness may remain preserved even after fourteen weeks, although consuming the coffee beans as soon as possible is your best option.

Tip: It’s best to consume freshly roasted coffee beans within two weeks of opening for the optimal flavor!

How long does coffee last when opened?

The answer to how long coffee lasts when opened depends on several variables. The main difference is whether or not the coffee has been roasted and then ground or if it is in bean form, as well as the storage method.

If stored properly, roasted, ground, and vacuum-sealed coffee can last up to two years.

When this type of product is opened, air enters the package, causing oxidation and reducing flavor over time.

It should be consumed within 1-2 weeks of opening to maximize freshness. It should also be kept in an airtight container away from light and heat sources like a pantry shelf.

I usually store my coffee beans in a glass container, such as a mason jar.

If you have a little bit of coffee left, it’s best to transfer it to a smaller container as well. This will ensure even less air enters the container:

Storing coffee beans in a small glass container.

What is the valve on coffee bags for?

Have you ever noticed the small button on some coffee bags and wondered what it was there for? Well, the answer is quite simple: it’s a one-way valve!

A one-way valve is designed to allow all of that fresh gas out of the bag while keeping air from entering.

This means that once your coffee beans are roasted and placed into sealed packaging with this type of valve, they will stay fresher much longer than they would otherwise.

It also limits the amount of oxygen inside the bag so that any gasses released by the freshly roasted beans can escape without problem.

The valves used on most coffee bags are either made out of plastic or metal, depending on what type of package your beans come in.

Here, I’ve removed part of a coffee bag to show you what the valve looks like from the inside:

The inside of a bag of coffee beans where the valve is shown.

The valve works by having an internal membrane that acts as a barrier against outside air when pressure builds up inside due to released gasses from roasting.

These membranes open up just enough to let those gasses escape but not enough for outside air to enter.

When everything equalizes again (the pressure goes back down), these membranes close completely so no more air can enter your package and affect your delicious beans’ shelf life!

So now you know why every time you pick up some freshly roasted grounds for yourself at the grocery store or local specialty shop, there’s always a little button waiting for you on top—it helps keep your coffee tasting great at home, too!

FAQs about opening coffee bags

You might have some more questions about opening coffee bags at home, which is why I’ve created the following FAQ section:

Which end should you open coffee bags?

The best way to open coffee bags is to always start at the sealed end. This will ensure that your beans are kept as fresh as possible and that their flavor and aroma are preserved for longer periods.

What is the button on coffee bags for?

The button on coffee bags is called a one-way valve and keeps your coffee fresh while keeping oxygen out.

Should you squeeze the air out of coffee bags?

Yes, squeezing air out of coffee bags is a great way to preserve the freshness and flavor of your coffee. When you purchase unground beans or pre-ground beans, the bag should be vacuum sealed to keep oxygen from entering the package.


Taking good care of your coffee beans from the minute you buy them to the moment they hit your cup is key for a bold and flavorful cup of joe each time.

With the tips I’ve presented in this article, you’ll never have to worry about stale coffee again.

Remember that great coffee starts with an airtight seal on the bag, storing it away from direct light or heat and using it before its expiration date.

Make sure you get the most out of your coffee beans by taking good care of them!

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