Can You Freeze Cooked Chicken: 11 things to know.

Cooked chicken is a staple in many households as it can be used in a variety of dishes, from salads to stir-fries to casseroles. 

However, sometimes we find ourselves with more cooked chicken than we can consume in one sitting. In these situations, the question of whether we can freeze cooked chicken often arises. 

Freezing cooked chicken can be a convenient way to preserve it and have it handy for future meals, but there are some considerations to keep in mind. 

In this blog post, we will discuss 11 things you should know about freezing cooked chicken and how to do it properly.

Let’s try to find out how to safely freeze raw and cooked chicken.

Can you freeze cooked chicken?

Yes, you can freeze cooked chicken. Make sure to place it in an airtight container or freezer bag, and label it with the date. Properly stored, cooked chicken can last in the freezer for up to 4 months. Thaw it in the fridge before reheating and consuming it.

Can you freeze any kind of cooked chicken?

Yes, you can freeze any kind of cooked chicken, but it is important to follow proper storage and thawing methods to maintain quality and safety.

How long can you freeze chicken for?

  • Chicken mince: up to 2 months
  • Chicken pieces: up to 6 months
  • Whole chicken: up to 12 months

How do you defrost frozen cooked chicken?

To defrost frozen cooked chicken, you can place it in the refrigerator overnight or use the defrost setting on your microwave. Alternatively, you can fill a large bowl with cold water and submerge the chicken, changing the water every 30 minutes until it is thawed.

Can you refreeze previously frozen cooked chicken?

Yes, you can safely refreeze previously frozen cooked chicken as long as it is thawed in the refrigerator and not at room temperature. However, the quality and texture of the chicken may be affected after multiple freeze-thaw cycles.

How can you tell if frozen cooked chicken is still safe to eat?

There are a few ways to determine if frozen cooked chicken is still safe to eat. First, check the expiration date on the packaging. If the chicken has passed its expiration date, it is not safe to consume.

Second, check for any signs of freezer burn, such as a frosty or discolored appearance. This can indicate that the chicken has been exposed to air and may have lost its quality.

Another way to tell if the chicken is safe to eat is to smell it. If the chicken has a strange or sour odor, it is best to discard it.

Finally, you can also use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature of the chicken. The cooked chicken should have a temperature of at least 165°F (74°C) to be considered safe to eat. If the temperature is lower than this, it should be cooked again before consumption.

Overall, it is best to err on the side of caution and discard any frozen cooked chicken that shows signs of spoilage or has passed its expiration date.

What’s the best way to use frozen cooked chicken?

The best way to use frozen cooked chicken is to let it thaw overnight in the refrigerator and then use it in a recipe that calls for already cooked chicken, such as adding it to a stir-fry, soup, or salad. If you need to use the chicken immediately, you can defrost it in the microwave on the defrost setting and then use it in a dish.

Is It Safe To Freeze Cooked Chicken?

Yes, it is safe to freeze cooked chicken as long as it is properly stored and thawed according to food safety guidelines. Make sure the chicken is cooled to room temperature before placing it in an airtight container or freezer bag. It is also recommended to label the container with the date and to use it within three to four months for best quality. When thawing, do so in the refrigerator or use the defrost setting on your microwave. Avoid thawing at room temperature to prevent bacteria growth.

Are There Any Types Of Cooked Chicken That Can’t Be Frozen?

Yes, there are certain types of cooked chicken that do not freeze well. These include fried chicken, breaded chicken, and chicken with a high-fat content, such as chicken wings or thighs. The breading on fried or breaded chicken can become soggy and lose its crispiness when frozen, while high-fat chicken may become dry and lose its flavor. It is best to avoid freezing these types of cooked chicken and consume them fresh for the best taste and texture.

Will I Be Able To Re-Freeze Cooked Chicken?

No, it is not recommended to re-freeze cooked chicken as it can increase the risk of foodborne illness and affect the texture and taste of the chicken. It is best to thaw and cook the chicken thoroughly before consuming it.

How do you store cooked chicken in the freezer?

Step 1: Allow the chicken to cool down. After cooking the chicken, let it cool down to room temperature before storing it. This will help prevent bacteria growth and ensure the chicken stays fresh in the freezer.

Step 2: Cut the chicken into smaller pieces. If you have a whole chicken or large pieces of chicken, it is best to cut them into smaller, more manageable pieces before freezing. This will make it easier to thaw and reheat later on.

Step 3: Wrap the chicken in plastic wrap. Place the chicken pieces on a sheet of plastic wrap and wrap them tightly. This will prevent freezer burn and help preserve the flavor and texture of the chicken.

Step 4: Place the wrapped chicken in a freezer-safe bag or container. Once wrapped, place the chicken pieces in a freezer-safe bag or container. Make sure to squeeze out as much air as possible before sealing the bag or container.

Step 5: Label and date the bag or container. Use a marker to write the date and contents on the bag or container. This will help you keep track of how long the chicken has been in the freezer and ensure you use it within a reasonable time frame.

Step 6: Store in the freezer. Place the bag or container in the freezer in a flat, even layer. This will help it freeze faster and make it easier to organize in your freezer.

Step 7: Thaw and reheat as needed. When you are ready to use the chicken, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before reheating. You can reheat it in the microwave, on the stovetop, or in the oven.

Note: Cooked chicken can be safely stored in the freezer for up to 4 months. Make sure to use proper food safety practices and check for any signs of spoilage before consuming.


In conclusion, there are many factors to consider when it comes to freezing cooked chicken. By following these 11 tips, you can safely freeze cooked chicken without sacrificing its quality and taste. From properly storing the chicken to defrosting and reheating it, these guidelines will ensure that your cooked chicken stays fresh and safe to eat.

Food Nimki