Freezing meat and poultry

There are several advantages for freezing raw meat and poultry:

Freezing reduces enzyme activity in meat and poultry and stops the growth of bacteria and molds. It does not tenderize nor sterilize meat.

Knowing how much meat or poultry to buy depends on several factors:

If a large amount of meat is planned for freezing, it is best to have the market or butcher cut, wrap and freeze it, because slow home freezing can cause large ice crystals to form in the meat. This process contributes to freezer burn and causes meat juices to be lost during thawing.

Freeze meat or poultry in portions they will be used; smaller packages freeze and thaw more rapidly. For quality results, use the following recommendations.

Helpful Hints for Freezing Meat


Recommended freezer storage times for meat
Ground and stew meat
Roasts and steaks
2 to 3 months
6 to 12 months
Ground sausage
Roasts and chops
Pork & ham, smoked
Ham, fully cooked
Bacon, sliced
1 to 2 months
3 to 6 months
1 to 3 months
1 to 2 months
Up to 1 month
Whole bird
3 months
6 to 12 months

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Helpful Hints for Freezing Poultry

Freezer Wrapping Techniques

To Drugstore wrap:

To Butcher wrap:

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