1. Some of the links on this forum allow SMF, at no cost to you, to earn a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. Let me know if you have any questions about this.

freezing smoked meats?????

Discussion in 'How-To' started by Burgi57Chevy, May 12, 2019.

  1. Morning and Happy Mother's Day!!!!!

    I am going to smoke a brisket, pork butt and chicken (breast and legs I think) for some dinners for a friend who is having surgery.

    My question is this.... If I vacuum seal individual sizes and freeze them, will they turn out ok when they pull them out to eat?

    The chicken will be smoked on bone and then removed for freezing.

    Thanks for all input!

  2. pops6927

    pops6927 Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Freezing destroys cell walls (just like freezing water - it expands). Thus, the product will unthaw and contain purge (liquid), reducing juiciness and flavor. But, that is the effects of freezing, no other solution. VacPac will help, but it is inevitable.
    Burgi57Chevy likes this.
  3. Holly2015

    Holly2015 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Pulled pork freezes exceptional well especially brisket and chicken off the bone also do really good.

    Hardy anything beats fresh made but home cooked meals prepared in advance for loved ones to help ease the burden when they heal is better than anything a 5 star chef could prepare.

    Good on you for doing what you are doing.
    Burgi57Chevy likes this.
  4. gmc2003

    gmc2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    It may not matter in your friends case, but to be safe check to see if there are any spices your friend can't have. I pretty much freeze all leftovers for lunches and dinners at work.

    Burgi57Chevy likes this.
  5. chopsaw

    chopsaw Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    My Dad's passed , Mom is living by herself . I vac pack up stuff for her all the time . Chicken parts , pork loin , eye round . Whatever I cook for here I pack some for her . She loves it . Some frozen some fresh . I do proteins , she does the sides .
    So say I do a pack of sliced pork loin . I will do 2 servings in the pack . So she can thaw , eat for supper hot say on Monday . Then enough is left to have a sandwich for lunch on Tuesday .
    Burgi57Chevy likes this.
  6. johnmeyer

    johnmeyer Master of the Pit

    I freeze smoked meats all the time and they taste as good reheated as the day they were cooked.

    It is true that freezing expands cell walls, but the reason this matter very little is that most cooked meats have already had the cell walls broken down, especially meats that have been heated to 190°F and above, like pulled pork or brisket. Thus, there is little damage that can be done by freezing.

    Also, I freeze fresh meats all the time and then cook them, and notice very little degradation. The reason for this is that I put them in a very cold (-10°F) freezer, and I refrigerate them before I freeze them. I also vacuum pack them. The reason this turns out so well is that the faster you freeze something the less damage (hence the "flash freeze" technique), and by vacuum packing them I completely eliminate freezer burn.
    chef jimmyj and Burgi57Chevy like this.
  7. indaswamp

    indaswamp Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    It is possible, but as pops has mentioned, freezing will affect the cells of the meat. Also, there are some volatile flavor compounds in smoke that dissipate very easily. Though it will be good after freezing, it will not be the same as it was hot off the grill after smoking.
  8. smokerjim

    smokerjim Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I don't have a vac pac, I actually freeze my stuff in zip loc bags and it comes out good, I don't freeze for very long times though maybe 2-3 month's has been the longest'
  9. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Epic Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Johnmeyer Nailed It! It is better to Freeze 8, one pound packs than 1, eight pound pack.
    The more cooked, the less Purge. A Slice of Ham, cooked to 145, will Purge more than Pulled Pork taken to 205. Besides, with pulled meat, you mix all the Juices and sauces in so no loss...JJ
    indaswamp likes this.
  10. phathead69

    phathead69 Smoking Fanatic

    I generally smoke three whole yard birds. Allow them to cool and pull them making 5 to 6 vac bags that wife uses in dishes later
    Last edited: May 12, 2019