Tap here to get 5 Secrets to Stress Free Dinners

Freezing Cooked Chicken

|

posted: 10/26/21

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy
|
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy

Freezing cooked chicken to keep on hand is the perfect short cut for dinners during a busy weeknight! Learn how to freeze cooked chicken with these simple easy steps.

overhead of a ziplock bag full of frozen cooked chicken

Here at Simple Joy, I have so many recipes that use pre cooked chicken. Soups, casseroles, wraps and sandwiches that are delicious, but do require already cooked chicken. Freezing cooked chicken is a great solution so you always have it on hand.

I especially love to purchase rotisserie chickens when they are on sale for freezing. This way I can pull the chicken out whenever I need a cup or two for recipes. If you are making a soup or a casserole, you can even add it to the recipe right from frozen.

See a great list at the end of this post for several wonderful recipes to use shredded chicken in.

overhead of a rotisserie chicken in a plastic container from the store

How to Freeze Chicken

  1. Allow the chicken to cool. You can wait overnight or just until the chicken is cool enough to touch easily.
  2. Remove and discard the chicken skin.
  3. Pull off as much chicken meat as you can, discarding fat and bones. (Or keeping them to make stock.)
  4. Cut up the chicken. I find that using kitchen scissors works really well for this.
  5. Flash freeze the chicken. Lay the chicken out on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Freeze for 1 hour.
  6. Transfer to an airtight container. After the chicken is frozen for an hour, break it apart and transfer it to an air tight container.
overhead of chicken being cut up on a rimmed baking sheet with kitchen scissors demonstrating freezing cooked chicken

Storing Frozen Chicken

In general most items last in the freezer for about three months. After that, you will likely get freezer burn. If you have a deep freezer, you can get a bit more time out of your frozen goods because the freezer is opened and closed less often, and things at the bottom are less exposed.

Another option when you are freezing cooked chicken is to vacuum seal it. I would recommend sealing it in one cup portions so that you can pull out exactly how much you need. Some vacuum sealers advertise that they can prevent freezer burn up to three years.

overhead of a rimmed baking dish with cut up rotisserie chicken

FAQ

How long does chicken last in the freezer?

Chicken lasts for 3 months in the freezer. This is true whether you are freezing shredded chicken or a whole chicken breast.

Where do you purchase your rotisserie chickens?

I find that I get the best quality chicken for the best price with Costco rotisserie chicken.

overhead of a bag of frozen shredded chicken

Rotisserie Chicken Recipes

If you make any of these delicious leftover rotisserie chicken recipes, leave me a comment and let me know what you think!

overhead of a ziplock bag full of frozen rotisserie chicken
0 from 0 votes

Freezing Cooked Chicken

(tap # to scale)
Prep: 10 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Freezing cooked chicken to keep on hand is the perfect short cut for dinners during a busy weeknight! Learn how to freeze cooked chicken with these simple easy steps.

Ingredients

  • rotisserie chicken

Instructions

  • Rotisserie chicken should be prepped for freezing as soon as possible, ideally within 24 hours of being purchased.
  • Cut the cooked and cooled chicken into bite sized pieces.
  • Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet in a single layer.
  • Place the baking sheet in the freezer for 1 hour.
  • Transfer the frozen chicken to a plastic bag or reusable and sealable container. Seal and place in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • For soups and casseroles, the chicken can be added to the recipe directly from the freezer. For other recipes, thaw the chicken turkey in the refrigerator overnight before adding to the recipe. (See our list in the post of great recipes to use frozen rotisserie chicken.)
Author: Lisa Longley
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
overhead of a ziplock bag full of frozen rotisserie chicken

did you make this

Freezing Cooked Chicken

I’d love to see what you made! Tag me @lisasimplejoy and hashtag it #simplejoyrecipes!

Hi! I'm Lisa Longley, and I am committed to giving you simple dinner ideas and recipes that are easy to make; recipes that will fill your home with joy. I am the owner and author of SimpleJoy.com and I'm so glad that you are here.

Reader Interactions

    LEAVE A COMMENT

    Have a question? Use the form below to submit your question or comment. I love hearing from you & seeing what you made!

    Rate This Recipe:




  1. Pat McGlothlin says

    I never toss the skin and bones from a rotisserie chicken. I always add onions, carrots celery, etc. Cover them with water and simmer. You’d be surprised how much flavor is in that broth.

SUPER-SIMPLEFAMILY FAVORITES
Broccoli Pasta"Omg! I didn’t think anything so simple could be so good!"
Creamy Cajun Shrimp Pasta Recipe"My family absolutely loved this recipe. Even my finicky eaters."
overhead photo of a gray skillet filled with beef and broccoli recipe, garnished with sliced green onions
Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry"I have made this a couple or more times. It’s easy & quick to prepare. I like this for a quick meal. It will be my go to recipe."

5 Secrets to Stress Free Dinners

SUBSCRIBE & RECEIVE

MY TOP 10 EASY DINNER EBOOK!