Whenever you prepare for parties and family gatherings, you just can’t imagine how it would feel when you run out of food! I can feel you! Everyone doesn’t like to run out of food in the middle of the party! But sometimes (or always!), you tend to overestimate the food you serve!
Or maybe, you just love chicken salad so much, but you don’t have the time to make it every day. You suddenly got this brilliant idea to make a huge, huge, batch and have it easily available whenever you want to have some! But can you freeze chicken salad? Is it like burgers or soups that you can just throw in the freezer and just reheat the next day?
If you freeze chicken salad, how long will it last? How do I freeze chicken salad? Will I still get a good consistency after thawing it? How do you thaw chicken salad? I believe these are some of the few questions playing in your mind. So, let’s see what we can do with that huge pile of chicken salad!
Can You Freeze Chicken Salad?
In a literal sense, you can freeze anything you like as long as you have a freezer! But seriously, yes you can freeze chicken salad! You can save it and have it thawed for later! Don’t throw it just yet!
Save it and serve it in one family dinner! If you can’t have enough of it, make a large batch and have it frozen. The next time you crave for chicken salad, you know you have it in the freezer!
How Long Does Chicken Salad Last in The Freezer?
It’s safe to assume that you can store your chicken salad in the freezer for up to three months or more. Depending on how you store them, it can even last longer!
If you store it in a huge container and thaw everything to get some serving then freeze it back, you will shorten the life of your frozen chicken salad. But depending on the ingredients you used, it may not last as long.
How do I freeze chicken salad?
Freezing chicken salad is not that difficult. All you need is a working freezer and a few containers, and you’re done!
To maximize your freezer space, avoid using large containers. Use something that is just enough to be filled with your salad and stick it in the freezer.
If you are not too busy, try packing your salads in freezer bags. Scoop a few portions in each freezer bag. This way, you save a lot of space in your freezer. One cool thing about packing them individually is you don’t have to thaw the whole batch just to get a few servings! That’s a neat hack!
Will I Still Get a Good Consistency After Thawing It?
This is a question that everyone is concerned of when freezing food. Will the quality be as good as a newly prepared dish? The answer to that, I’m sorry, is no. There will be some difference at the very least. It would be a little difficult to freeze something and restore it to its original state.
The thing is, when you freeze food items, the liquid molecules it contains expands. (yes, this is why unopened bottled wine explodes in the freezer!) This means that when you thaw them, the texture may be a bit different from how it was before it was frozen. Veggies won’t do good in the freezer as well.
To make better chicken salad intended to be frozen, avoid using mayonnaise as it separates when frozen. Instead, you may want to use cream-based salad dressings or another mayonnaise substitute. This will give you a better consistency when thawed.
How Do You Thaw Your Chicken Salad?
So, the next question is—how do you thaw the salad after freezing it? Do you torch it? You don’t have to do that. Thawing your chicken salad does not need special preparation. At best, you have to predict when you will have it!
The best way to thaw it is to take it from the freezer and leave it in the fridge for overnight. The next morning, you get a nice-looking salad. It will be a little watery, but It’s not a problem. Just drain it, and you’re done.
If you are in a hurry, you can speed up the process by soaking your salad (make sure it’s still in the freezer bag!) in tap water.
If you are in an extreme hurry, you can have it even faster when you soak it in warm water! This is the fastest method, but it’s not advised if you mixed fresh greens in your salad. It may ruin the texture of your greens!
- Pro Tip 1 - Add a tablespoon of salad dressing to improve your salad and replace the lost moisture.
- Pro tip 2 - If you have the time to carefully plan your salad, you can exclude your greens from the recipe. When you are ready for serving, thaw a portion of your veggies less chicken salad and add the greens afterward. Preparing veggies for your salad is extremely easy. This way, you can enjoy your salad greens fresh!
Freezing food is a fascinating way to lessen your preparation time in the kitchen. Well, nothing beats freshly cooked dishes and freshly made salads, I think everyone will agree to that. But when you are just too busy to do everything at once, Its such a pity if you can’t even enjoy your favorite roasted chicken salad!
Can you freeze chicken salad? The good thing is yes you can! No one can stop you from doing it! Go ahead and make a large batch of chicken salad. Have it frozen in small individually packed serving for easier storage and thawing!