How to: Divide and Freeze Chicken

Written by Beth - Budget Bytes

There is one thing I really, really hate and that’s touching raw chicken. I won’t go into details, but I’ll just say that I try to do it as little as possible.

If you’re a regular reader of the blog you know that I always have really low prices listed for my boneless, skinless chicken breast. That’s because I pretty much only buy it when it is on sale. After I buy the chicken I immediately divide, individually wrap, and freeze the pieces for later use so that I can defrost one at a time as needed. When I first started doing this I absolutely hated the chore of wrapping and freezing the chicken… until I discovered this little trick!

This simple technique allows you to wrap each piece of chicken quickly and cleanly, with barely any chicken-skin contact. Woot! Prepare to have your eyes opened.

How to Divide and Freeze Chicken

Supplies to freeze chicken (package of chicken breast, zip lock baggies, pen to mark date)

Step 1: Get your supplies out. You’ll need fold-top sandwich bags and one gallon sized freezer bag (or two if you’re prepping a lot of chicken). Label the freezer bag with the contents and date so that if the chicken ever gets lost in the freezer you’ll at least know what it is when you find it.

Zip lock bags with top folded down to put chicken breast in

Step 2: Get ready. I like to fold back the opening of the freezer bag so that I can just slide the wrapped chicken breasts in without touching the outside of the bag (I’m trying to spread as little raw chicken juice as possible). I also take out the number of fold-top sandwich bags needed (one per chicken breast), so that I won’t be reaching into the box of sandwich bags with sticky chicken hands.

hand put inside baggie and grabbing chicken breast

Step 3: Protect your hand. Take one of the sandwich bags and invert it over your hand so that it is inside out and covering your hand. Open the chicken package and use the covered hand to grab one of the breasts…

Flip bag rightside in to cover breast and remove your hand

Step 4: Now simply flip the sandwich bag right side out and around the chicken breast. Fold the flap in to enclose the chicken breast. Now it’s neatly wrapped in its own little package and you’ve had minimal contact with the chicken. Yay!

Slide individually wrapped chicken breasts into large zip lock bag and seal

Step 5: Slide the wrapped chicken breast into the freezer bag and repeat the process with the rest of the chicken. The thin sandwich bag keeps frost from building up on the surface of the chicken and the thick freezer bag keeps air out and prevents freezer burn. Now you have a freezer full of chicken ready to be defrosted whenever you need it! And that whole process only took about five minutes.

Note: Even though this process is virtually mess-free, you’ll want to wash your hands well and disinfect your countertops afterward. Salmonella is not fun and you don’t want to chance small amounts of it contaminating other foods.

Got any cool tips for freezing your food? Share them in the comments below!