Kielbasa is one of the most notable types of polished sausages out there. You can find these goodies in the freezer section, but they might not always be available because everybody loves them so much. So, if you are looking forward to storing some at home, you might also want to know whether can you refreeze kielbasa?
You can safely refreeze kielbasa but refreezing it several times isn’t recommended. Whether cooked or uncooked, you can always store kielbasa as long as you follow the refreezing instructions carefully. However, it would be best if you used kielbasa within a specific time, or else the kielbasa may go bad.
Now you must be thinking, how can you properly refreeze kielbasa? And what are some essential tips to avoid uncertainties during the refreezing process? Here is the guide:
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Is it Safe to Refreeze kielbasa?
Refreezing any type of sausage is entirely safe if you correctly follow the food safety guidelines. According to USDA, if you purchase previously frozen meat, chicken, or fish at a grocery store, you can refreeze if you are sure it has been appropriately handled.
Even after thawing the kielbasa, you can again refreeze the uncooked kielbasa. However, thawing and refreezing the kielbasa more than once might bring about changes in the odor and color.
Moreover, the oxidation process starts taking place, which results in the degradation of meat quality. As a result, the meat loses most of its juiciness and tenderness.
Also, once you have cooked the previously frozen kielbasa, you can safely refreeze them. If you want to refreeze unused kielbasa, you must do so within 3 days. Also, don’t keep the kielbasa outside for more than one or two hours at most.
How to Safely Refreeze Kielbasa?
If you think refrigerating food will stop the growth of bacteria, then you are wrong. Keeping the food in the refrigerator only slows down bacterial growth, whereas freezing stops it.
Refreezing is an effective way to store the cooked and uncooked kielbasa at home. It also helps to increase its shelf life and also prevents any wastage of food.
If kielbasa comes in a vacuum-sealed bag, you can go ahead and put the whole pack right into the freezer. However, if you are not sure if the packaging is vacuum-sealed, you can go ahead and follow these basic steps to prepare the kielbasa for freezing safely:
- Refrigerate the kielbasa as soon as you get home because leaving it out of the fridge/freezer for more than 2-3 hours can promote bacterial growth.
- For refreezing cooked kielbasa, let kielbasa thaw overnight in the refrigerator (40°F). Once appropriately thawed, cook the kielbasa and cool it down fast.
- After the kielbasa has cooled down, you can flash freeze each kielbasa by first laying them on a tray or dish and placing the dish inside the freezer.
- Next, start wrapping each cooked or uncooked kielbasa individually in an air-tight bag, making sure to press out as much air as you possibly can. You can even use a sheet of cling film or plastic wrap. Just make sure that it has been wrapped tightly and there’s no excess air.
- After that, put the whole lot into an air-tight Ziploc bag or container. Again make sure that there’s no extra air inside the bag/container.
- Once you are done with double wrapping, you can go the extra mile and put a label on the bag/container. This way, you can remember the exact date you put kielbasa in the freezer.
Is It Important to Thaw Kielbasa Before Refreezing?
It would help if you did not thaw kielbasa at room temperature or over the counter. It can ruin the taste and texture of kielbasa if accidentally thawed out for too long.
It would help if you always let the kielbasa thaw overnight in the refrigerator. It lowers the chances of kielbasa going bad while thawing and thaw kielbasa from the center as well.
Is It Safe to Refreeze Kielbasa More Than Once?
Refreezing uncooked kielbasa over and over again is not recommended. If frozen several times, kielbasa loses its texture and taste and becomes unsafe to consume.
However, refreezing kielbasa once after cooking is completely safe. If kielbasa has not been left out to thaw for a long time, you can safely cook and refreeze it until you want to eat it the next time.
How Long Can You Refreeze Kielbasa?
The time duration for frozen kielbasa depends on how well you have prepared the kielbasa before freezing. It also depends on whether you are dealing with an opened or an unopened pack.
Generally, it’s safe to store an unopened vacuum-sealed pack of kielbasa in the refrigerator for almost four weeks. If frozen properly, it can be kept frozen for up to a year or till the expiration date mentioned on the pack.
You can store an opened pack of kielbasa in the fridge for two weeks maximum. In case of following the exact refreezing instructions, you can keep refreezing it for almost six months.
Unfortunately, everything starts perishing after some time, and kielbasa is no exception. Refreezing kielbasa might slightly prolong its shelf-life, yet there comes a time after which kielbasa is no longer safe to consume.
Though most people don’t recommend refreezing kielbasa still, you can safely refreeze cooked kielbasa one time after cooking. If frozen correctly, kielbasa wouldn’t lose much of its taste, and there won’t be any drastic changes in its texture.
Refreezing is an excellent way to store leftover kielbasa, but you should not keep it for longer than suggested.
You can safely refreeze kielbasa; make sure you follow the instructions as mentioned earlier, and you are good to go.