Can You Freeze Cooked Chicken Wings?

by Charlie

Chicken wings are a household favorite. They can be fried and served along with dipping sauce to feed guests. Cooking chicken wings is a process that you can complete easily within a short period of time.

There are different recipes that can be used to prepare a delicious plate of chicken wings – feel free to use anyone containing your favorite ingredients. 

Chicken wings have more skin than meat, which makes them really tasty. If you’ve made more chicken wings than your guests can finish, what do you do with the rest?

Cooked chicken wings can’t be left to sit out at room temperature for too long. Because they are perishable food, chicken wings will go bad after being exposed to room temperature for more than 2 hours. 

Since freezing is such an effective method of preserving several food items, can you freeze chicken wings? Yes, you can freeze chicken wings. Freezing will keep your cooked chicken wings preserved for up to 6 months. If kept frozen constantly at 0⁰F, chicken wings will remain edible for an indefinite period. However, for the best taste and texture, it is recommended to consume all frozen chicken wings within the first 3 months of freezing. 

There are correct steps to follow when freezing cooked chicken wings. These steps include packaging for the freezer and reheating after freezing. If the chicken wings aren’t packaged properly, their delicious taste and succulent texture will be significantly altered.

I have successfully frozen, defrosted, and reheated cooked chicken wings on several occasions. In this article, I’ll be sharing the steps I use with you.  

Freezing Cooked Chicken Wings 

Because chicken wings are so delicious and easy to prepare, it’s common to find yourself with some leftovers that you don’t want to waste.

Leftover chicken wings, or even freshly cooked ones, can be stored safely in the refrigerator for a couple of days – between 3 to 4 days. Unlike the freezer, refrigeration can only slow the growth of bacteria on cooked chicken wings for a few days. If you desire long-term preservation, your best bet is freezing. 

The 6 months of preservation gotten through freezing is more than enough. It gives you easy access to a delicious batch of your favorite appetizer. Whenever you have a craving for cooked chicken wings, all you need do is thaw and reheat the number of wings you want.  

How to Freeze Cooked Chicken Wings  

If done correctly, the original qualities of your cooked chicken wings will be preserved through freezing. Here are some of the best steps to follow:   

Step 1: Let Hot Chicken Wings Cool to Room Temperature  

Before placing cooked chicken wings in the freezer, you need to make sure that they aren’t hot. Give the chicken wings some time to cool down to room temperature. However, you need to remember that cooked chicken wings can only sit out for 2 hours from the time they were cooked. Don’t leave them sitting out for too long so that they won’t eventually go to waste. 

If hot chicken wings are placed directly in the freezer, moisture will be formed. The moisture will go on to form ice crystals and cause freezer burn on the chicken wings.  

Step 2: Pack the Chicken Wings in Freezer-Safe Bag or Container 

After the chicken wings have cooled down, start packing them for preservation in the freezer. You can make use of a freezer-safe bag or container. However, the plastic freezer-safe bag is preferred to a container because it doesn’t take up as much space as the container. 

If one sealable freeze-safe bag won’t be enough, you can make use of 2 or more. As you arrange the chicken wings in the plastic bag, be careful not to put the sharp tips in a position that can tear through the bag. If the wings happen to rip through the freezer-safe bag, the chicken will come in direct contact with cold freezer air and suffer some undesirable damages.   

Also, make sure the chicken wings aren’t sitting on top of each other in the plastic bag. Allow each one to lay flat in the bag. Once that is done, seal the bag tightly so that cold air doesn’t come in.   

Step 3: Label the Freezer-Safe Bag and Keep Safely in the Freezer  

Use a marker to write the present date on the freezer-safe bag so that you can always know exactly how long the chicken wings have been frozen for. If you don’t want to write directly on the plastic bag, you can use a sticky not instead. 

Find a clear space in the coldest part of your freezer and keep the chicken wings there. Avoid placing other food items on the frozen chicken wings – this will hinder the wings from freezing well. 

How to Defrost and Reheat Frozen Chicken Wings 

At the point where you crave juicy chicken wings, you’ll need to defrost and reheat the frozen chicken wings. These processes must also be done correctly if you want the original qualities of the chicken wings back.

The defrosting can easily be done by leaving frozen chicken wings to sit overnight in the refrigerator. It is the safest defrosting method; even though it takes several hours. 

If you can’t wait for frozen chicken wings to defrost in the fridge, you can make use of a microwave. Microwaves defrost frozen foods much faster. Using a meat thermometer, make sure that the chicken wings have a temperature of at least 165⁰F all through before serving them to eat. 

To reheat thawed chicken wings, preheat your oven to 350⁰F. Place the chicken wings on a baking sheet and add a little chicken broth to restore the meat’s juiciness. Heat the wings in the oven for about 10 minutes before taking them out to serve.      

Conclusion 

Chicken wings make a great snack or main dish. Thankfully, we can always preserve any leftovers inside the freezer for up to 6 months. In fact, a fresh batch of cooked chicken wings can be made for long-term preservation in the freezer. Just make sure you follow the given steps in this guide so that you can get the best results out of freezing. 

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