Can I freeze uncooked bacon, and if yes, for how long?

tradewind_64November 21, 2008

Has anyone here ever frozen raw bacon? I ordered some lovely expensive free range/pastured nitrate-free bacon online and would like to use it sparingly as flavoring rather than use it up quickly over a week or so.

I don't own a food saver, but I was thinking I could wrap individual slices in press-and-seal wrap and then place in freezer bags? Is there any reason why this wouldn't work? How long could it keep in the freezer?

On a related note, how long does Prosciutto keep? :-)

Any advice is much appreciated!

Joanna

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wizardnm

I freeze bacon all the time. When I catch a good sale at the grocery, I will buy extra to freeze. I order some really good bacon that arrives frozen from the farm and I pop that into the freezer too.
Your idea to freeze separated slices makes sense. I usually thaw a lb, use what I need and then freeze extra that has been cooked already, I feel like that makes it easier and more economical since it saves on both the cooking and cleaning.
I've kept bacon in the freezer up to a year.

Once opened, I wouldn't keep Prosciutto in the refrigerator longer than 7 days, freeze for longer storage.

Nancy

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 6:10AM
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ilene_in_neok

I freeze bacon by the slice, too. I separate each slice and roll it into a roll, and set them on a cookie sheet to freeze, then transfer them into a zip-lock bag. I can then take out as many as I need. They thaw pretty quickly.

I've also frozen cooked bacon. They are nice to pop into the microwave for a quick BLT or egg & bacon sandwich. --Ilene

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 6:33AM
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tradewind_64

Ilene and wizard, I am glad to hear that it works just fine for you both. No complaints about the taste/texture of the cooked bacon after having been frozen?

Joanna

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 6:58AM
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teresa_nc7

It is recommended that bacon be frozen for no longer than 6 weeks - as with all smoked or processed meats like your prosciutto from the deli. Longer storage might not make you sick, but the quality of the bacon might be lessened.

Teresa

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 7:03AM
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chase_gw

I freeze bacon all the time and for a lot longer than 6 weeks. I have not noticed any negative impact on taste or texture.

Deli meats like prosciutto etc are another matter . I find they don't freeze well at all.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 8:13AM
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lindac

If you have ever had a hog butchered and the bacon and hams smoked you would know that you sure can freeze bacon....and it stays for lots longer than 6 weeks...but I do begin to taste an off taste after about 3 to 4 months. I guess I have a really sensitive taster for "rancid".
Linda C

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 8:56AM
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cloudy_christine

I fold a big piece of foil into accordion pleats, and put three or four slices into each pleat. Push the pleats together and wrap the whole thing for freezing. When you want some, you just take out the serving in each pleat, and it thaws very quickly.
I wish I could claim this idea as my own, but I read it somewhere.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 10:48AM
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BeverlyAL

I freeze bacon all of the time. To keep them really well and keep moisture out I take two or three slices and wrap then in a plastic wrap first, then I wrap in foil. They will keep very well for many months like this.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 11:02AM
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terri_pacnw

I agree with LindaC..I bought a half hog last spring...it comes frozen in 1lb packages from the Butcher.
I freeze bacon all the time. I have found the thinner the slices the faster you want to use it though.
I just bought 10lbs of bulk nitrate free bacon from Hemplers, and packaged in 1lb packages wrapped in saran then into a zip loc..but we use about a pound a week..so that will go fast.
Hemplers recommends that you freeze in butcher paper for longer storage though..
When I get it from the butcher directly it's wrapped in a plastic sheet(thicker than saran wrap type), then in the paper.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 11:19AM
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annie1992

I also freeze bacon for months. We sometimes raise our own pigs and when you have a whole pig that's a lot of bacon. My meat cutter shrink wraps everything and it's as good 6 months from now as it is the day I put it in the freezer.

Mine seldom lasts more than 6 or 8 months, but I've got some of last year's jowl bacon in the freezer and some smoked hocks and they will both be used in soup where I wouldn't notice if they are a bit stale.

Annie

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 11:24AM
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Marigene

I am another that keeps bacon in the freezer at all times.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 12:33PM
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tradewind_64

Thanks for your advice and tips everyone. I appreciate having kind of a ballpark figure based on everyone's combined experience with it.

If I don't freeze it, then DH will think it is to be consumed daily, and in large quantities. That man LOVES bacon. Which would be fine if he was a landscaper or lumberjack maybe, but he works at a computer all day :-)

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 7:41PM
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antiquesilver

I wrap individual thick slices in deli paper (2 to a sheet), put 3 of these packs in a gallon ziplock, & freeze flat. The paper peels right off when removed from the freezer. 3 months is about the longest I've kept it frozen but that's because my DH is like yours!

    Bookmark   November 22, 2008 at 1:23AM
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plantnut65

how long can I keep bacon in the refrigerator?

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 3:13PM
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rob333

plantnut, you're actually better off keeping it in the freezer if you don't cook it all the time. It's a really fast thaw. In the fridge? Dunno, couple or three weeks? It's really not all that long. If you keep it in its pacakge that helps. Just as long as it smells right and doesn't look funky (that discolored shiny film), you're probably ok.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 3:50PM
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sleevendog

Once the package is open it gets funky after about a week in the fridge. I'm always a bit surprised. The pink starts to turn grey. In the sealed package i've had it look fresh up to two weeks but it really depends on the manufacturers process.
It really is one of the foods we have that tells you by a visual. And smell. Could even be ok to eat? For a short time, but just doesn't look good.
Best to freeze it.

Here is a link that might be useful: EatByDate

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 8:42PM
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annie1992

I agree, it's better frozen. I cure and smoke my own, and package it in FoodSaver packages, just a few slices, enough for a meal, maybe two. That way I can leave the bulk of it frozen, and just use the stuff in the refrigerator within a couple of days. I've kept it up to a week, though.

Annie

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 9:14PM
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justsaying

Just 2 of us here so I always freeze the bacon. I don't freeze it in one lump, though, I freeze it in 2 strips "each." I take a large sheet of parchment paper and put 2 slices of bacon near the bottom, then roll once and slap another 2 slices of bacon on the parchment paper - and I continue this (takes about 6 or 7 rolls) until my pound package of bacon is all encased in the parchment. Then I slide it into a Ziploc freezer bag. Using the parchment (it doesn't stick to itself) makes it very easy to remove what I need (usually 2 strips for soups, 4 strips for breakfast) and just throw the rest back in the freezer.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 10:34PM
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