Can You Freeze Cooked Pork Ribs? (Must-Read Tips)

Can You Freeze Cooked Pork Ribs
Foods Questions

Have you ever wanted to make a crazy large batch of ribs and then freeze them for later?

I know I have. It’s not always practical or possible, but if you’re in the mood for some delicious BBQ, it might be worth considering!

Do not worry about the leftovers because you can freeze them.

Yes, you can freeze cooked pork ribs. Just make sure that they are placed in an airtight container to make them last in the freezer.

The key is proper storage. Cooked meat can last for months in the freezer if properly stored.

How to properly freeze cooked pork ribs?

I personally like to cook my ribs in an oven, but if you prefer to use a slow cooker, go for it.

The main thing is that the meat should be fully cooked before freezing.

In order to freeze pork ribs properly, place them on a baking sheet or aluminum foil and allow them to cool off at room temperature.

Now wrap the cooled ribs tightly in an airtight container, followed by creating two layers of plastic wrap over the container lid/top.

This ensures that there will be no moisture, odors, or freezer burn affecting the cooked ribs.

How long can you freeze cooked pork ribs?

Frozen cooked pork ribs can last in the freezer for about one year.

Do not forget to label the container with a clearly written date of freezing and thawing.

Otherwise, you will forget when they were actually date frozen.

It’s tough to judge exactly when your ribs have been in the freezer for about 12 months, so best be safe by labeling them!

You can cook fresh or frozen ribs. Just make sure that you adjust baking time accordingly (steaks are better baked from a previously frozen state).

However, freezing cooked ribs may alter their texture and appearance a bit.

That’s not necessarily bad, but it can become problematic if you’re planning on serving the frozen ribs for a fancy dinner with friends or family.

This means that although freezing is the best way to store cooked pork ribs, you still need to be careful.

I suggest that you consume the meat as soon as possible to freezer burn and other issues that could compromise the quality of the meat.

How to thaw frozen pork ribs?

The best way to thaw your frozen pork ribs is to transfer them into the refrigerator prior to cooking (better late than never).

It will take about 4-5 hours at 40°F for 10 pounds of meat to be fully thawed.

The safe method is placing the container in the sink and running cool water over it until it is no longer cold.

This takes about 20 minutes per pound of meat.

If you want to speed up this process, opt for thawing in the refrigerator or running warm water over a sealed bag of frozen ribs in your sink.

Always remember to cook frozen pork ribs immediately after they have been removed from the freezer.

Otherwise, you may end up with a less-than-desirable texture and appearance.

Can you freeze reheated pork spare ribs?

You can safely store reheated ribs by transferring them into an airtight container and putting them in the freezer.

Simply reheat on a pan or in an oven once thawed.

You can also refreeze them when they have been fully thawed.

But please make sure that you label them properly because it’s easy to forget about those after a few weeks.

Be sure you have a label and a date clearly visible for each container.

How long can you freeze reheated pork spare ribs?

Reheated frozen pork spare ribs will last in the freezer for about 1-2 months, but this depends on their original quality.

Always make sure that they are stored properly to avoid them from releasing moisture or becoming affected by freezer burn.

As far as appearance is concerned, it’s not an issue.

You can place reheated frozen pork spare ribs directly from your freezer into hot water (for example, if you plan to boil them).

They will thaw quickly enough.

What about freezing cooked pork ribs after thawing?

The best way to reheat previously frozen and thawed ribs are to bake them in a preheated oven at 350°F for about an hour.

Flip every 20 minutes or so during cooking until you achieve desired consistency.

You can also reheat them on a pan over medium heat, flipping constantly, just like while grilling ribs.

Just be sure not to burn or dry out the reheated meat.

Once they are fully cooked, transfer the cooked pork ribs into a new airtight container (prevents freezer burn).

Freezer-friendly containers include various aluminum foil containers with tightly secured lids or plastic containers with tight-fitting lids.

Labels are crucial for storing cooked ribs in the freezer because it’s easy to forget about them after a month or so.

You can also cook frozen pork ribs, just make sure that you adjust cooking time accordingly (steaks will be ready sooner than bone-in cuts).

Final thoughts

If properly stored and handled, cooked pork ribs should be good for consumption up to 1 year after being placed into the freezer.

This may be hard to determine when exactly they were frozen because people tend to remember the best more recent events.

But don’t worry, simply use the label.

Freezing cooked pork ribs does not affect their taste or texture in a bad way, but it’s best to avoid storing them for long periods of time because they tend to dry out with every passing day in the freezer.

If you are planning on serving frozen cooked pork ribs at a fancy dinner party, make sure that they have been properly defrosted prior to cooking.

Reheating frozen cooked pork ribs does not alter their taste or texture from what they were like before freezing.

Just remember to wrap your food tightly and store it in airtight containers to prevent freezer burn!

Learn more about freezing foods here.