Smoked sausage is a type of sausage, usually made from ground meat and pork, which has been seasoned and cured so that it can be kept without refrigeration. Often, the seasoning will include salt and pepper or other spices.
Smoked sausages are typically cooked by grilling, pan-frying, or broiling. They can also be baked in an oven, although this takes longer than the other methods and requires more attention to prevent burning.
Smoked sausages take quite a long time to cook. For that reason, after it’s cooked, you will want to store them for later use. Would freezing smoked sausage be an option for storage?
Can you freeze smoked sausage? Yes, you can freeze smoked sausage. Smoked sausage freeze quite well if it’s stored in an airtight container or freezer bag. Properly stored, the sausage will stay fresh for about 2-3 months.
This article is a comprehensive guide to freezing smoked sausage.
Does Smoked Sausage Freeze Well?
Yes, smoked sausage freezes very well. I recommend that you do not freeze it for more than two months, but other than that it will maintain its quality and taste for a long time.
Remember to take it out of the freezer at least a day before you plan on eating it so that it can thaw without any negative impact on the flavor or texture. If you don’t have enough time to thaw your sausage beforehand, you can cook part of it from frozen by either cutting off the end where it’s been sitting in the cold and cooking a small portion.
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How To Freeze Smoked Sausage
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Smoking sausage is a great way to preserve meat for consumption throughout the year. Smoking can be done on any grill or smoker, but it is best to use one specifically designed for the task. Freezing smoked sausage does not require special packaging, however, proper storage of frozen smoked sausage will help maintain its quality and flavor.
Below are the steps to freezing smoked sausage:
Step 1: Allow to Cool Down
After the sausage is smoked, allow it to cool down first. Freezing the sausage while it’s still warm will cause condensation, which the moisture from it will damage the sausage. Also, the heat from the sausage will cause other foods around it to thaw prematurely.
The smoked sausage should be cooled down to room temperature within 30 minutes.
Step 2: Prepare an Airtight Container or Bag
For smoked sausages, it’s best to either use an airtight container or freezer bag. Both items do a good job of keeping the sausage fresh. It will prevent air and moisture from leaking in and destroying the sausages.
Step 3: Portion the Sausage
Once the smoked sausage is cooled completely, place them into an airtight container or freezer bag. For small meals, it’s best to cut them into small pieces. This way, you won’t need to refreeze any leftovers that you have after it’s thawed.
For larger meals, you can freeze the entire sausage or cut them into smaller pieces. Just make sure the container or bag is large enough to accommodate them.
Step 4: Seal the Container or Bag
If you’re using an airtight container, before sealing it, check the seal on the lid. Make sure there are no cracks or damages to the seal. Just a small crack will allow the air to leak in and cause freezer burn to the sausage. Replace the seal if it’s damaged or the entire lid. Then secure the lid to the container.
For freezer bag usage, press on the bag to remove any excess air before sealing it.
Step 5: Label and Freeze
With a marker, write the date of freezing on the freezer bag. This will help you keep track of when you’ve frozen it and when to use it by. Then place the smoked sausage into the freezer for storage.
How Long Can You Freeze Smoked Sausage?
You can freeze smoked sausage for up to 3 months. After that, the quality of the sausage will start to deteriorate. That’s because smoked sausage contains nitrates and nitrates are unstable when frozen.
The longer it’s in the freezer, the more that deep woody smokey aroma will be lost.
However, the smoked sausage will still be safe to eat after that time, but you may not enjoy the taste of it that much.
How Do You Defrost Smoked Sausage?
To defrost smoked sausage, remove it from the freezer and put it in the refrigerator overnight or for at least 6 hours before you use them.
Smoked sausage is essentially cooked, so you don’t have to worry about killing any bacteria or food-borne illness issues if you leave them out at room temperature. Just make sure to not keep it for longer than 2 hours.
Can You Refreeze Smoked Sausage?
Yes, you can refreeze smoked sausage. You can refreeze almost any kind of meat for that matter. As long as the sausage has not thawed completely, you can freeze it again. There will be no changes in the texture or flavor of the sausage.
However, if the smoke sausage has thawed completely, it isn’t a good idea to refreeze it. Freezing and thawing them more than once will cause the sausage to deteriorate even more. After thawing for the second time, you may notice that the sausage is soggy.
To avoid having to refreeze smoke sausage, you should freeze them in portions. This way, you’ll only need to remove what you need without having to worry about any leftovers and refreezing the sausages.
Other Questions about Smoked Sausage
Can you eat smoked sausage without cooking it?
Yes, you can eat smoked sausage straight out of the package. However, if it’s an uncooked smoked sausage made from pork, lamb, or beef, it should be cooked to 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Sausages that contain chicken or turkey should be cooked to 165 degrees Fahrenheit before consuming.