How to Cook and Freeze Chicken Breast

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How to Cook and Freeze Chicken Breast

Many frugal recipes call for cooked chicken breast. Having to cook chicken as needed can really put a drain on your dinner time prep and buying canned chicken, well…we’ll just leave that alone.

My favorite thing to do to save time and money is to cook and freeze my chicken breast ahead of time. It thaws really fast when needed, especially if you pop it in the microwave for a few minutes. And if you’re throwing it in a soup or the slow cooker, there’s no reason to thaw at all.

Although we seldom see coupons for chicken, you can still practice The Pantry Principle by stocking up when it reaches it’s lowest price per pound. My buy price for chicken has to be under $2/lb and it must be fresh! Trust me on this, there is a HUGE difference between fresh and previously frozen chicken. That’s why I buy the majority of my chicken breast from Zaycon Fresh.

When I first started freezing cooked chicken, I cooked it in the slow cooker, however, I wasn’t too fond of the texture that resulted. Now I prepare chicken breast for the freezer by baking it in the oven. There’s also a perk…you get chicken broth out of the deal too!

How to Cook and Freeze Chicken Breast


raw chicken breast prepped for the oven

Rinse, trim and then lay chicken breasts in a single layer in large baking dish or roasting pan.

cover chicken breast tightly with foil

Cover tightly with foil and bake the chicken breast at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until done. Remove from oven and let cool completely with foil still intact. This will ensure moister meat.

chicken breast baked in the oven

Once the chicken is completely cooked, transfer the breasts to another container, cover and place in refrigerator for a couple of hours. Cooling the chicken way down makes chopping it a much simpler task. If you try to chop it up when it’s still warm, your chicken will start to shred* and fall apart.

*Note: If you need shredded chicken for a recipe, this is the ideal time to do it.

strain chicken broth through sieve

Next, pour the broth from the baking dish through a sieve (to remove particles) and into a glass container. I like to use a big glass measuring cup, but I’ve also poured it directly into mason jars before. Once this cools down, place it in the refrigerator for a few hours.

refrigerate chicken broth

While in the refrigerator, the excess fat will rise to the top and solidify. Simply scrape the fat from the top and discard. Pour the broth into glass mason jars or the freezer container of your choice. Label and freeze for up to one year.

Be sure to freeze broth in different sizes so you have a variety available. It’s not safe to thaw and refreeze poultry broth, so you’ll want to make sure you have the right amount on hand to avoid waste. You might consider the following:

Ice Cube Trays – each cube =  approximately 2 tablespoons

Pint Size Mason Jars = 1 1/2 cups

Quart Size Mason Jars = 3 1/2 cups*

*Perfect size for making soups or boiling pasta

pour broth into freezer container and chop chicken breast

Last, remove the chicken breast from the refrigerator and chop into bite size pieces. Transfer to resealable freezer bags or containers and freeze for 3-4 months.

Now you you’re prepared for anytime a recipe calls for cooked chicken or chicken broth.

How to Cook and Freeze Chicken Breast

Zaycon Fresh Zaycon Fresh Chicken

Zaycon Fresh – Great Prices on FRESH Chicken Delivered to Your Area
I love having my Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast delivered by Zaycon Foods. By cutting out the middle man, Zaycon Fresh brings you the highest quality meat products at the lowest prices. They used to have just a few drop off points, but they’ve gained so much popularity over the past few years, that locations nationwide are able to take advantage of the freshness and super savings.

Register with Zaycon Fresh and they’ll let you know when a sales event is coming to your area. They sell lots of other products too, like Lean Ground Beef, Bacon, Ham, and more!

find more in : In the Kitchen, Kitchen Tips and Tools, Skip the Deals

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Mary from Mission to Save March 27, 2015, 6:07 am

    I do something similar and use my crock pot to cook the chicken. And thanks for the tip about cooling it down before cutting! Mine would always shred, so know I know why!

    • Amanda March 27, 2015, 10:18 am

      You’re welcome, Mary! A friend passed that little tip down to me. Works great for whole chicken that you want to debone also!

  • Linda May 13, 2015, 7:53 am

    Can’t wait to do this. I’m in full time classes and about to start a full time job. Thank you for this!

    • Amanda Brackney May 23, 2015, 6:29 pm

      Happy to help, Linda! Let me know what you think!

  • Sam Eaton May 19, 2015, 10:37 pm

    Great post! Very clear instructions and easy to follow pictures! Hmm… this would be a great thing to have on hand for those rushed, after work days. Thank you!

    • Amanda Brackney May 23, 2015, 6:28 pm

      Exactly, Sam! Having precooked chicken on hand saves a ton of prep time in the kitchen. Thanks for commenting!

  • Marie May 21, 2015, 12:44 pm

    I love doing this but instead of heating up the kitchen in the summer time, I typically use the crockpot. in the winter using the oven is good because it helps heat our home.


    • Amanda Brackney May 23, 2015, 6:28 pm

      Yep, we use the crock pot sometimes too, but really don’t like the texture as much as ovenbaked. :)