Can You Freeze Cooked Prawns? – How To Freeze Cooked Prawns? – Defrosting Cooked Prawns

Can You Freeze Cooked Prawns?: If you are a seafood lover, your diet must include delicious prawns. Prawns are quite versatile and act as an excellent addition to salads, curries, and pasta recipes. They are rich in nutrients, and proteins. You can buy prawns in different varieties, such as fresh, cooked, shelled, and unshelled.

When you buy fresh prawns, you should either consume them right away or freeze them as soon as possible. So is it possible to freeze prawns at home, or is this something that you should avoid? For freezing, let the cooked prawns cool, then place them in a freezer-safe bag, seal it, and place it in the freezer. Let’s find out all the necessary details related to freezing, storage, shelf life, and thawing of cooked prawns.

Can You Freeze Cooked Prawns

Can You Freeze Cooked Prawns?

Yes, you can freeze cooked prawns. They can be frozen for up to 4 months. Timing is crucial when you’re freezing seafood because you need to freeze it as quickly as possible. There’s nothing too tough about freezing cooked prawns, but you just need to limit the amount of time they’re sitting out at room temperature.

If you leave your cooked prawns on the counter for any longer than two hours, they’re likely to be attacked by harmful bacteria, which can cause them to spoil. If you live by the sea and there is a fish market there, it can be a good idea to go there to buy freshly cooked prawns and then freeze them quickly. More details on freezing cooked prawns are in the next section.

How To Freeze Cooked Prawns?

In the case of most types of seafood, the quicker you can get them into the freezer, the better. To ensure your cooked prawns stay perfectly safe to enjoy in the future, here are the steps you need to follow to freeze them properly:

  • Cool: You will need to allow your cooked prawns sufficient time to cool before you freeze them. Regardless of the way in which you’ve cooked your prawns, you should allow them to sit at room temperature for an hour or so before proceeding to the next step.
  • Place the prawns in a freezer-safe bag: Put your cooked prawns in a suitably sized freezer-safe bag. Then push as much excess air from the bag as possible, and seal it tightly.
  • Label and Freeze: Seal the bag, write the freezing date and the use-by date on the bag, and place your prawns in the coldest part of the freezer. This way, you can freeze cooked prawns for around four months.

How Long Can You Freeze Cooked Prawns?

Just like most seafood, prawns freeze really well, even when they’ve already been cooked. If your prawns were fresh when you froze them, they should be perfectly fine in the freezer for several months. You can freeze cooked prawns for about 4 months. It’s not recommended to freeze them any longer than this, as they may start to deteriorate in quality.

Assuming that you have stored them correctly and not let them sit at room temperature beforehand, there is little chance that cooked prawns will go bad in the freezer. If their quality deteriorates, it’s a good idea to use common sense to determine whether they have gone off or not.

Cooked Prawn Shelf Life
In the refrigerator 3 to 4 days
In the freezer 4 months

Tips For Freezing Cooked Prawns

Now that you know how to freeze cooked prawns, let’s see some tips that we strongly recommend following to get the best freezing results:

Take fresh prawns 

Before you cook and freeze your prawns, you need to make sure that they’re in good shape. The first sign of quality degradation is if they give off a strong odor, and the smell may resemble that of ammonia. You should also avoid freezing discolored prawns.

Only Freeze Once

It’s best if you only freeze cooked prawns once. This is because they have almost certainly already been frozen before you bought them. For example, fishermen freeze prawns on their boats to preserve their freshness. Also, freezing cooked prawns more than once could cause you a serious stomach upset!

Freeze Plain or in a Sauce

We have already elaborated on the process of freezing plain cooked prawns. But you can even freeze prawns that have been coated in a delicious homemade sauce. You can also freeze cooked prawns as part of other recipes, such as curry or stir fry.

How Do You Defrost Prawns?

It is best to defrost prawns slowly in the fridge. Defrosting prawns can take up to 24 hours to defrost, so take them out of the freezer the night before you want to use them. Alternatively, there is a quicker way to defrost them, but we’re not entirely sure that this is the best way to go.

Here, put them in a large bowl, cover them with water, and change the water every fifteen minutes. The danger in doing this is that the prawns sit in thawing juices, and if these juices heat up to room temperature, bacteria can breed.

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Do Cooked Prawns Freeze Well?

Yes, cooked prawns freeze extremely well. Although we would better recommend freezing uncooked prawns to give you greater flexibility when it comes to preparing them, freezing cooked prawns is a perfectly safe alternative too. It is interesting to note that some fishermen freeze their prawns straight after they have caught them and got them to shore. They believe that this locks in the freshness of the prawns.

So, whether you have some leftover king prawn curry or the remains of creamy prawn linguine, you can freeze your cooked prawns and be assured that they will be perfectly safe to enjoy in the future.

Can You Refreeze Prawns?

No, it isn’t a good idea to refreeze prawns, as they will end up mushy when defrosted. This applies to both raw and cooked prawns. If you want to freeze a lot of prawns, flash freeze them so that they don’t stick together. And freeze them in separate bags. Then you should just defrost just as many prawns as you need for a meal.

Does Cooking Method Affect Prawns’ Shelf Life?

No, the cooking method doesn’t make a difference in the prawns’ shelf life. Both raw and cooked prawns, irrespective of cooking method, are safe in the fridge for up to three days from the date of purchase. However, this should be judged on a case-by-case basis, and when in doubt, always rely on your sense of smell and taste to steer you clear of possible food-borne illnesses.

This can be a little harder when other ingredients in cooked prawns mask the taste, but as a general rule, any longer than three days for prawns is no longer a safe period for consumption.

Spoilage Signs Of Prawns

If your prawns are slimy or going grey, this may be a sign that they have lost their freshness. Slime on proteins indicates that lactic acid from bacteria is present, and this makes your prawns unsafe to eat. In general, seafood that smells overly fishy or funky should not be consumed, as it may already be spoiled.

Another indicator that your prawns are not safe to consume is if they have green or blue spots growing on them. These spots are due to mold growth, and they can cause serious food poisoning if you eat them. Also, don’t keep spoiled food in your fridge; toss it out immediately to avoid contaminating any other food that you’re storing.

To know more about the freezing process of fishes like mussels visit our article on Can you Freeze Mussels and know how to do so.

FAQs On Freezing Cooked Prawns

1. Can you get food poisoning from defrosted prawns?

In general, you can get food poisoning from all sorts of spoiled foods. However, if you defrost your prawns in the fridge and then heat them all the way through, you should be safe to go.

2. Can you freeze prawn curry or Chinese prawn dishes?

It’s recommended to only freeze these dishes if they have been made with raw prawns so that their taste and texture are preserved. You should put them in freezer bags in meal-size portions so that you only defrost what you need.

3. How Long Do Prawns Last in the Fridge?

Both raw and cooked prawns will only last for 2 to 3 days in the fridge before they need to be discarded.

4. Can You Freeze Fresh Prawns in Shells?

Yes, you can freeze prawns both in shells or peeled. When you’re freezing them in their shells you’ll need to thaw them fully before cooking so that you can easily remove the shells.

5. Can You Freeze Raw Prawns?

Yes, you can freeze raw prawns in a similar way. Once you get them home from the store, avoid leaving them out at room temperature, bag them up and get them into the freezer as soon as possible.

6. Can You Eat Cooked Prawns Cold the Next Day?

You can eat cooked prawns cold the next day, but it’s important to keep them stored in the fridge until you want to eat them and not at room temperature, where they could harbor dangerous bacteria.

Wrapping Up

Hopefully, you have found out all there is to know about freezing cooked prawns. If you’ve still got questions about freezing cooked prawns or prawns in general, then drop us a comment below. Fish and seafood are delicate and can spoil even quicker than meat, so be careful and freeze them in the way we have suggested.

It is generally a good idea to freeze food so that you can enjoy it for a few months. Check out our latest blogs like Can you Freeze Dressed Crab to learn the best way to freeze different types of food items.

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