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Looking for input on freezing chicken. Come late September or early October we will be having a get together with about 50-60 people. I would like to do some yardbirds ahead of time, freeze them and thaw and serve as needed. I have some questions and am open to other suggestions as well.

1. How long will chicken keep in a freezer and not get freezer burn or taste/odor? I plan to wrap in plastic wrap and double ˜freezer Zip-Loc" bag em.

2. Thaw naturally (in the fridge) or toss them in boiling water to reheat? Want to stay away from the danger zone!

3. Should I smoke pieces or whole birds?

Any other suggestions?

TIA for your help! Big Grin

PS The reason I will not be smoking the birds just before the get together is that I will probably be doing butts and/or briskest a few days before. This is a 2-3 day event.
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I always point to FSIS for these questions. Read about "freezer" safety for the official answer.

FSIS Freeze safety

My thoughts.

If you're doing chicken parts, they don't freeze well after cooking and then reheat (did you say boil?) Big Grin The taste and texture just aren't the same.

If I'm doing that, I would do whole chicken breasts, smoke them, take them and slice them and seal them not in storage bags but a food safer. I pre-cut only because of time savings.

I would do them the day of or the day before and chill them only. You could freeze the butts or briskets and have a better reheat than poultry parts.

If you have to freeze them, whole birds need to be parted out.

I do take chicken, debone it and freeze it, but we make chicken and dumplings or chicken tacos or other stuff with shredded chicken.
I regularly freeze smoked chickens (cut in half) and then reheat-they work fine for the family, but, like Smokin says, they won't taste as good as one that just came out of the smoker.

If you do have to freeze them, one thing you might want to look into is dry ice-I saw a Good eats episode where Alton used dry ice to freeze strawberries-the reason is, the quicker the freeze, the fresher the food will taste. I've never used it, however.

I usualy reheat the chickens in the oven at 350

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