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How to Freeze a Whole Chicken

author image Heather Topham Wood
Heather Topham Wood is a seasoned writer whose work has appeared in numerous publications, including USA Today, Gadgetell, Feel Rich and Step in Style. Heather is a published novelist with six Amazon bestsellers and a contract through Crescent Moon Press. She holds a bachelor's degree in English from TCNJ.
How to Freeze a Whole Chicken
A roast chicken with lemons, herbs and spices. Photo Credit: bhofack2/iStock/Getty Images

A whole chicken can be frozen if purchased raw or fully cooked. Frozen raw chickens should be used within 12 months, according to the United States Department of Agriculture. A fully-cooked whole chickens must be consumed within four months. When you plan to cook the chicken, thaw it in the refrigerator for one to two days, depending on the size of the bird. For faster thawing, place the chicken in a tub of cold water several hours before cooking.

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Step 1

Wrap the whole chicken in several layers of heavy-duty foil or freezer paper. Do not remove the original wrapping, if there is one, if you plan to cook a frozen chicken within two months.

Step 2

Squeeze out excess air from the packaging to prevent freezer burn.

Step 3

Write the date you are freezing the chicken on a label, and place the label on the chicken.

Step 4

Leave the chicken on its own shelf until it freezes, so air can circulate around it. According to the Real Simple website, once food is frozen, it can be stacked along with other frozen items.

Step 5

Freeze at a temperature of 0 degrees Fahrenheit. To avoid the potential of food-borne illnesses, avoid adjusting the temperature in your freezer.

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