Scallops are shellfish that are popular for their delicate texture and taste. It is also very versatile and can be used in soups, salads, stir-fry, or eating them fresh. If you bought fresh scallops from the seafood market, you may wonder if it’s possible to freeze them.
So, can you freeze scallops? Yes, you can freeze scallops, both cooked and uncooked. If you want to preserve them for a longer period of time, they require proper storage. Scallops will ensure the scallops will stay fresh for up to 3 months.
Do Scallops Freeze Well?
Scallops freeze very well due to their high content of water. This seafood will freeze for a very long time if it’s properly stored.
To keep them fresh for a long time, always store them in an airtight container or freezer bag. These storage containers can withstand extremely cold temperatures without cracking or breaking.
How Long Can You Freeze Scallops?
Scallops that are stored in the freezer will for up to 3 months. This is possible if the scallops are properly stored.
After 3 months, the scallops will still be safe to eat, but the quality of it will deteriorate. You may notice the scallops lost some of their flavors and it will be tougher.
Cooked scallops will have a shorter shelf life in the freezer. They will last for about 1-2 months. It’s best to try to consume them within a month after it’s been frozen for the best result.
For scallops that are vacuum-sealed, they can last for much longer. Since there is almost no air in the bag, the scallops will last for up to 1 year.
How to Freeze Scallops
When buying scallops from the seafood market or grocery stores, you’ll have a choice to either buy them frozen or fresh.
If you bought them frozen, there is no prepping needed. Once you get home, simply place the entire bag of frozen scallops into the freezer. If you know you won’t get home within 2 hours, ask for some ice to keep the scallops frozen.
For fresh scallops, once you have bought some, make sure there is plenty of ice to keep them cold while it’s in transit home.
Freezing Fresh Scallops
- Start by cleaning the scallops. You can rinse them if you want.
- Place the scallops into a freezer bag or an airtight container.
- If using a freezer bag, press on it to remove as much air as you can before sealing it. For an airtight container, make sure there are no leaks in the lid before sealing it.
- Label the container or bag with a freezing date and place them into the freezer.
Freezing Cooked Scallops
- Let the scallops cool down to room temperature. Make sure not to leave them out too long as it can be contaminated with harmful bacteria.
- Place them into an airtight container.
- Seal the airtight lid tightly.
- Label it with a freezing date and place them into the freezer.
How Do You Defrost Scallops?
There are a couple of different ways to defrost scallops. You can defrost them in the microwave, using warm water, or thawing them in the fridge.
The best method to use is to thaw the scallops in the refrigerator. Simply remove the number of scallops you need from the freezer and place them into a bowl. Then cover it with a cling wrapper and place it into the fridge. Let it sit in the fridge overnight to thaw or for at least 6 hours.
If you’re press for time, you can either thaw them in the microwave or warm water. Below are the methods for thawing them:
Thawing Scallops Using Warm Water
- Remove the number of scallops from the freezer.
- Place them into a resealable plastic bag.
- Fill a bowl with warm water. The water needs to be about 50 °F (10 °C). This will prevent it from cooking the scallops and changing the texture.
- Put the bag of scallops into the bowl.
- Let it sit for about 10 minutes and change the water with warm water again. Repeat the process once or twice more and it should completely thaw. For large scallops, you may need to repeat the process 3-4 times.
- Once it’s completely thawed, you can use them for cooking.
Thawing scallops using warm water will thaw them quickly, but you’ll end up with scallops that are tough when it’s cooked.
Thawing Scallops In the Microwave
- Remove the number of scallops you need from the freezer.
- Place them into a microwave-safe bowl.
- Cover the bowl with a paper towel. This will prevent the risk of the scallops from getting cooked. Also, it will absorb the moisture that could change the texture of the scallops.
- Place them into the microwave and set it at the defrost setting.
- Defrost them at 30 seconds interval.
- After 30 seconds, check to see it has thawed. If not, repeat the process until it’s completely thawed.
Using the microwave to thaw the scallops is the quickest method, but it can be tougher and chewy when it’s cooked.
Using Scallops After Freezing
Scallops are very versatile and can be prepared in many different ways. This seafood can be baked, broiled, grilled, sauteed, or cook in oil.
These are some of the most popular ways to prepare scallops. However, there are many other different ways to prepare scallops.
Below are some delicious ways to prepare and serve scallops:
- Lemon garlic butter
- Garlic basil butter
- Scallop risotto
- Scallops in pasta
- Grilled Scallops with Creamed Corn
- Pan-Seared Scallops with Chorizo and Corn
- Grilled Scallops with Lemony Salsa Verde
- Leche de Tigre
- Grilled scallop tacos
- Scallops Salad
- Scallop Aguachile
- Scallops with Nori Brown Butter and Dill
- Seared Scallops with Avocado and Daikon
- Scallops with Herbed Brown Butter
- Hazelnut crusted scallops
- Sweet and sour grilled scallops
- Scallops with Apple Pan Sauce
- Pistachio-Crusted Scallops
- Scallops with Spice Oil
- Scallop Crudo
- Pea Puree with Shrimp and Scallops
As you can see, there are plenty of different ways to prepare scallops. There are many other foods that you can make with scallops.
Can You Refreeze Scallops?
Yes, you can refreeze scallops, only under two conditions. The scallops are being thawed in the refrigerator and it has not completely thawed yet.
It’s important to thaw scallops in the fridge and not on the countertop or warm water if you’re planning to refreeze them again. Bacteria grow quickly at room temperature and will make the scallops unsafe to eat. If you do refreeze them again, the bacteria will get frozen along with the scallops.
For that reason, always thaw scallops in the fridge if you have the intention of freezing them once more.
As it is thawed in the fridge, don’t allow the scallops to completely thaw. When it does, a lot of the moisture has leaked from the scallop already. Most of the flavor will be in the water.
When you refreeze the scallops again, they will lose most of their flavor.
Can you freeze scallop roe?
Scallop roe cannot be frozen. The roe is very delicate and softens when frozen. As it thaws, it will become mushy and watery.
Can you freeze fried scallop?
Yes, you can freeze fried scallops. However, it’s not recommended that you do so. By freezing fried scallops, they will become soggy and lose their flavor. The reason for that is when it’s being frozen, the oil tends to seep through the scallops.
Can you freeze scallop wrapped in bacon?
Yes, you can freeze bacon-wrapped scallops. It can either be frozen before they are cooked or afterward. Make sure to store them in an airtight container or freezer bag before placing them into the freezer.