Freezers are immensely useful modern devices. Our diets are flexible and unusual. Some days our appetites can be ravenous and insatiable, and then other days we just have no appetite at all.
This can often make meal preparation and buying foods incredibly difficult. Freezers help us to keep food that would otherwise spoil in a short period instead last for months upon months, to be used later.
However, as useful as this is, freezers still need to be used in a very specific way to achieve desired results.
Certain foods and drinks can’t be frozen, and most important to today’s discussion, some foods cannot be frozen again if they have already been frozen once before.
The list of foods that can be frozen multiple times is quite extensive, as is the list of foods that cannot be refrozen! This can make it difficult to know exactly where you stand when it comes to using your freezer, especially with the perennial favorite: Bacon!
In order to help make it all a bit clearer we’ve put together this guide to answer this question once and for all and to help with any more questions that you may have.
Can You Refreeze Uncooked Bacon?
Yes. The simple answer is that you can refreeze uncooked bacon once it has been thawed. This is great for those times where you accidentally thaw too much bacon and aren’t sure what to do with the rest.
However, there are some slight caveats. Bacon will take better to being refrozen if it has been allowed to thaw in the fridge. If the bacon has thawed at room temperature, then it is likely that it won’t take to freezing very well.
Thus, if you are planning to thaw any bacon, but aren’t sure how much to use, make sure to let it thaw in your fridge.
Can You Freeze Cooked Bacon?
Yes. You can freeze fully cooked bacon.
If your bacon has been left to thaw at room temperature, then one great way to solve the problem is to cook it to your satisfaction, and then simply freeze it once cooked. This gives the bacon a new lease of life and allows it to be frozen fully.
Why Can You Not Refreeze Bacon That Has Thawed on a Countertop?
When bacon is thawed on a countertop at room temperature the bacteria that is on the bacon can multiply more quickly since it will be thriving in the warmer environment.
This is generally why refreezing thawed bacon is often frowned upon. It’s also exactly why it is recommended to cook the bacon before refreezing it.
Why Can You Not Refreeze Certain Foods?
This can be due to a number of reasons. One of the most commonly mentioned reasons is that it can vastly affect the quality and texture of your food. Food that is frozen changes shape slightly as the cells expand when frozen.
This means that when the food is thawed it is slightly different in terms of taste and texture. Though this change is negligible after the first freeze.
If the food were to be frozen again, then the transforming of the food cells would likely occur again, and this will significantly alter the quality of the food. Refreezing and thawing constantly will slowly cause food to degrade little by little.
Another reason that you shouldn’t refreeze certain foods when thawed is because of the creation of bacteria. When in the open air foods are susceptible to developing large deposits of bacteria that you definitely don’t want on your food.
Bacteria thrives and multiplies in warm environments, hence why you most definitely shouldn’t refreeze foods once they have thawed.
If you must refreeze a portion of food that has been thawed at room temperature, then you should aim to cook that food first, so as to kill off the newly developed bacteria and allow it to stay healthy and closer to fresh.
Why Shouldn’t You Freeze Food?
There are no hard and fast reasons as to why you shouldn’t freeze certain foods, as the convenience of freezing far outweighs the potential drawbacks.
However, one commonly listed reason not to freeze foods is the reduction of quality. Fresh foods have a greater sense of texture and a more natural taste to them. This makes them more exciting and pleasurable to eat.
Freezing causes the structure of food to be altered as the cells of certain ingredients or dishes expand upon freezing. This causes small imperfections in the food’s texture and taste, and this increases tenfold for multiple refreezing sessions.
What Foods Should You Not Freeze?
There are a few foods that you will likely want to avoid freezing when you can. You should avoid freezing salad greens such as lettuce. This is because foods such as lettuce cannot retain their structural integrity during the freezing and thawing processes. They become rather mushy which is entirely unpleasant.
Egg-based sauce such as mayonnaise can separate during freezing which can totally destroy the creamy texture and pleasant taste of mayonnaise and render it totally wasted.
This is also the case for concentrates and juices, as they also find themselves separating in a rather disgusting manner. This also makes them more susceptible to developing pockets of bacteria and other harmful things.
And finally, you should avoid freezing vegetables or fruits with high water contents. This is because such products can very quickly end up soggy and unsatisfying and will likely lose their refreshing textures.
Freezers are great for allowing us to stay in control of our diets and make use of every single ingredient we buy for our meals. However, they do require some amount of knowledge to operate well. Certain ingredients should only be kept in freezers for a certain amount of months, and others should not be frozen at all!
When it comes to food that has been freshly thawed, many can be frozen again, but plenty cannot. In the case of bacon, you can refreeze.
You should aim to make sure that it has been thawing in a refrigerator, or that you cook it before refreezing it so that unhealthy pockets of bacteria don’t end up developing.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Can You Tell If Bacon Is Bad?
You’ll likely be able to tell when your bacon has gone bad by looking at its color. Usually, bacon has a slightly pink or red hue that it is recognized for. When it goes bad, it tends to lose this hue in exchange for a more pale gray color.
Bad bacon can also tend to feel rather slimy to touch, and this would likely be a great sign that the bacon is past its best and that it should swiftly be thrown away.
Bad bacon also has a very foul smell that is rather akin to a rotting smell, which is very distinct and unpleasant. If your bacon smells unpleasant then it is highly likely that it has gone well past its best.
How Long Can Defrosted Bacon Stay In The Fridge?
Bacon can stay in the fridge for as long as 7 days. However, you should enjoy that you eat the bacon as soon as possible, as the quality does deteriorate with each day.
Does Freezing Bacon Make It Salty?
The taste of your bacon might change slightly as a result of the freezing process. The taste will likely be slightly more salty than usual.
This is caused by the freezing process which will naturally draw out the moisture from the bacon in order to freeze it. This causes the saltiness to be left behind.