The best way to preserve scallops is to freeze them. You can thaw them and cook them anytime.
However, there are some instances when you feel you need to refreeze them (due to some urgent errands) instead of cooking them.
Now, the question is, can you refreeze scallops? If you are a beginner, this is something that you might want to know.
The truth is that you can refreeze scallops as long as they are thawed in the refrigerator and not at room temperature. The scallops should not have been totally thawed yet when you refreeze them.
There are important reasons why you should not refreeze scallops thawed at room temperature.
I will explain further the reasons below. If you want to learn more, just keep reading.
Why thawing scallops in the fridge is important?
The safest thawing technique is refrigeration. This means that the frozen goods are placed in the fridge to thaw.
This is the safest of all thawing techniques because it prevents bacteria from contaminating the frozen food.
This is also true in scallops. Thawing the scallops in the fridge will keep them safe from contaminants making them safe to eat.
Thawing in the fridge is important especially if you want to refreeze the remaining thawed scallops. Because thawing in the fridge keeps the scallops from bacterial contamination, they will be safe to be refrozen for future use.
The only drawback of this thawing technique is that it requires ample time. In most cases, frozen goods are needed to be thawed in the fridge overnight.
If you are in a hurry, obviously, this is might not be your best option.
Why you should not thaw scallops at room temperature?
Thawing at room temperature is another common thawing method that most people do. However, this is not the safest one.
The main reason is that when frozen goods are thawed at room temperature, they are prone to bacterial contamination.
The USDA states that frozen foods should not be left at room temperature for more than 2 hours. Longer than 2 hours, the bacteria and airborne pathogens can quickly grow and contaminate the food.
In other words, if scallops are thawed at room temperature, they are not safe to refreeze because they might have exposed to bacteria.
If you are planning to refreeze thawed scallops, make sure that they are thawed in the fridge.
To keep the quality of scallops intact, make sure that they are not totally thawed when you refreeze them.
Freezing and thawing are two sequential processes. Reversing it can have a negative impact on the frozen goods.
This is the main reason why you only refreeze scallops that have not been completely thawed in the fridge.
Can I refreeze half frozen scallops?
Although freezing is the safest way to store scallops, sometimes, you still encounter problems.
One of the challenges is a power outage. Power interruption can definitely affect the overall quality of scallops especially if it lasts for several hours.
In this case, scallops should be cooked immediately. Remember that sea foods spoil pretty quickly when not frozen.
But if the power outage only lasts for a short period of time and the scallops are half frozen, you can still refreeze them.
When do scallops safe to refreeze?
Like other frozen foods, it is safe for scallops to be refrozen if they are not totally thawed yet. Also, they should be thawed in the fridge.
If you have left scallops at room temperature and completely thawed, they are not safe to be refrozen.
Your only feasible option is to cook the scallops. Once they are exposed to room temperature for more than 2 hours, bacterial may have been grown in them.
Refreezing will not kill the bacteria. The freezing temperature in the freezer will only prevent the bacteria from multiplying rapidly.
As you can see, freezing will not save the scallops that have been thawed at room temperature making them unsafe to eat.
Can previously frozen scallops be refrozen?
In most cases, you can’t buy fresh scallops. We usually buy them from the sea food market frozen.
When you got home, you wonder whether you can refreeze scallops previously frozen. Well, based on my own experience, you can refreeze scallops that are previously frozen.
I have been doing this for many years now and found no problem. The only thing you need to remember is that quality may suffer a bit if scallops are frozen for too long.
How long do frozen scallops last?
There are many factors that could affect how long they can last in the freezer. Therefore, the answer to this question depends on those factors.
But if properly stored, scallops can last for about 12 months assuming that the temperature is maintained at 0 degrees Fahrenheit.
If a long power outage occurs along the way, I recommend that you cook the scallops especially if they are already thawed in the freezer.
Check the frozen foods if they still have ice crystals in them. If so, they can be refrozen.
But if power interruption lasts for hours, it will not be safe for the scallops to remain in the freezer.
Cooking can be the best thing you can do.
How long will frozen scallops remain safe to eat?
As mentioned, scallops can last in the freezer and safe for about 12 months. However, this is only possible if the scallops are stored properly.
If kept at 0 degrees Fahrenheit, scallops are safe to eat even after 12 months. But if a power outage occurs pretty constantly, scallops may not last long in the freezer.
It is very important that you check the frozen goods when power interruptions occur.
Remember that the temperature in the freezer should be maintained at 0 degrees Fahrenheit.
Are frozen scallops safe to eat after the expiration date on the package?
Frozen scallops are safe to eat after the expiration date. The date indicated on the package is only the manufacture’s estimate on how long the scallops remain in their best quality.
In other words, it will still be safe to eat frozen scallops after the expiration date. But remember to freeze the scallops properly to prolong their texture and flavor.
How to tell if frozen scallops are no longer good?
If scallops turn bad, they show many indicators. Some of the indicators are discolorations. This means that freezer burn has affected the frozen scallops.
Although freezer burn will make scallops unsafe to eat, it will definitely deteriorate the texture and flavor.
However, if you notice off odor, I recommend that you discard scallops. It is not worth taking the risk.
Always take the safety your first priority.
Can you refreeze cooked scallops?
You can refreeze cooked scallops. However, refreezing does not guarantee good quality. But it is safe for the cooked scallops to freeze and be eaten later.
But I am afraid scallops will not last long in the freezer if refreeze. If you want to keep the overall quality of scallops, it is better to freeze them uncooked.
Just make sure that they are handled properly. Do not leave them at room temperature for too long before freezing.
Remember that freezing will not kill the bacteria. Scallops that are left for more than 2 hours at room temperature will not be safe to freeze anymore.
The best thing you can do in this case is to cook the scallops instead.
Can you freeze scallops twice?
The answer to this question depends on how the frozen scallops are thawed. If thawed in the fridge, especially if they are not totally thawed yet, scallops can be refrozen.
But it is not possible to refreeze scallops thawed at room temperature. If this is your first time, this is something to consider
Does freezing scallops kill bacteria?
Because freezing keeps foods’ quality intact, many people (this may include you) believe that freezing kills bacteria, especially in scallops.
But the truth is that freezing will not kill bacteria in scallops. Freezing will only prevent the bacteria from spreading rapidly.
This is the main reason why you should not refreeze scallops that are thawed at room temperature.
Do I have to defrost scallops before cooking?
Frozen scallops needed to be thawed in the fridge before cooking. Thawing it in the fridge overnight is the best thing to do.
This requires enough time though but it is the safest way. However, if you do not have enough time, this may not be your best option.
The other thawing method that I usually use is running tap water. Just place them in the running tap water and wait until they are completely thawed.
If you are in a hurry, you can thaw frozen scallops at room temperature. But bear in mind that this is not the safest thawing method.
This is because thawing frozen foods at room temperature put them in the danger of bacterial contamination.
If you want to thaw frozen scallops at room temperature, make sure that you do not leave them on the counter top for more than 2 hours.
This is to prevent the bacteria from growing rapidly.
I hope this helps. If you want to learn more about freezing foods, do not hesitate to visit this page.