What is the healthy way to cook frozen chicken?

frozen chicken in instant pot

You may be in a rush to cook an urgent meal, but you have a frozen chicken. Fortunately, it is possible to save time and safely prepare frozen chicken. You can roast it whole if you have a large number of people to feed or cook the breasts or drumsticks if you only want to make a small meal. It is essential to take the safety rules for chicken preparation and make sure you follow them carefully, no matter how much meat you prepare. Also, remember to cook the meat well to avoid any foodborne illness. Follow our different methods to cook frozen chicken.

1.The important rules to follow while cooking frozen chicken

1.1 Roast a whole frozen chicken in the oven (roasted chicken)

1.1.1 Be careful when preparing frozen chicken:

Preparing any part of a frozen chicken always poses a high risk of food poisoning. To eliminate all pathogenic germs contained in the chicken, make sure that the meat’s internal temperature reaches at least 75 ° C during cooking. Always remember to use a stove or oven when you want to prepare frozen chicken. In most cases, it is better to cook it for a period of 50% longer than what you would need if you were preparing thawed meat.

– For example, to roast a 2.5 kg thawed chicken at 180 ° C, it takes approximately two hours. Prepared at the same temperature, frozen chicken of the same size will take about three hours to cook properly.

– Try to check the meat’s internal temperature by using a meat thermometer. Identify the thick parts of the chest, thighs, and wings and then successively introduce the thermometer. If the latter does not indicate 75 ° C, continue to cook your chicken.

– Never cook frozen chicken in a slow cooker. This appliance will not be able to produce the necessary heat to eliminate all the pathogens present in the meat. Besides, it will take you to cook the chicken for too long and at inappropriate temperatures.

1.1.2 Preheat the oven:

Preheat the oven at 180 ° C. Meanwhile, turn the frozen chicken upside down in a large roasting pan. This will ensure the well doneness of the thickest part of the chicken.

1.1.3 Prepare the chicken:

Prepare the frozen chicken. Put the seasoned chicken in the oven without covering and roast it for about 90 minutes. Then increase the oven’s temperature to 230 ° C. Let the frozen chicken cook for another 15 to 30 minutes. This will brown the skin. Remove the chicken from the oven and enjoy after inserting the thermometer into different parts of the meat and read 75 ° C.

These cooking times correspond to those of a 2 kg chicken. Remember to adjust the cooking time according to the weight of your chicken.

Before cutting the meat, allow it to cool for 10 to 15 minutes.

If you notice that part of the meat is red or pink, put the uncooked pieces or whole chicken back in the oven until it turns white, and the juice does not contain any traces of red.

It is better to put the chicken in the oven with oil or butter to keep it moist, prevent it from burning from the outside, and keep the inside raw.

1.2 Cooking frozen chicken in a frying pan

1.2.1 Cut the chicken breasts into cubes:

You can roast frozen chicken breasts and cook them over the entire stove, but it’s better to cut them into cubes or slices to cook them faster.

You can briefly melt chicken breasts in the microwave to make it easier to cut.

1.2.2 Season the chicken:

You can season chicken with a mixture of spices, sauce, salt, or pepper before freezing it or while thawing it during the cooking process.

Cook chicken in broth for rich flavor and prevent the meat from drying out.

Chicken does not absorb spices if frozen.

Put a tablespoon of cooking oil in a frying pan. Use olive oil, vegetable oil, or butter.

Place the pan over medium-high heat to heat the oil or melt the butter.

Add the frozen chicken or vegetable broth if you like, and cover the chicken pot to simmer.

Cook chicken breasts for two to four minutes. Try to lift the lid only to check the doneness of the chicken and to prevent the heat from leaking out.

Cooking frozen chicken takes 50% longer than melted chicken, just like in the oven.

Add any additional seasoning to the chicken after 2 to 4 minutes after cooking.

Turn the chicken breasts.

Lower the temperature and cover the pan. Set the timer to 15 minutes and allow the chicken to boil while avoiding raising the cap to check the chicken.

Turn off the heat and let the chicken breasts rest for 15 minutes. Allow the breasts to rest after cooking for 15 minutes.

Check the temperature of the chicken, using a meat thermometer. The temperature of the chicken should be at least 74 ° C.

Make sure there are no traces of pink in the chicken breasts.

Related: What are the common mistakes while cooking chicken breasts?

2. Other methods to cook frozen chicken

2.1 Cooking frozen chicken in a pressure cooker

If you are using the pressure cooker, you can cook frozen chicken quickly and in a healthy way at the same time. All you need to do is to cook the chicken for 7-10 minutes until the pieces are completely cooked. Nevertheless, avoid boiling a whole frozen chicken in a pressure cooker because this step may cause the meat to drop from the bone and consequently negatively affect the taste of your dish.

2.2 Cooking frozen chicken in a regular saucepan

The latest studies show that you can cook chicken by raising the heat and extending the cooking time by 50%. In this case, be sure to cook chicken on top of your favorite vegetable so that the steam can easily move around the chicken. But if you do not want to add vegetables to your plate, you can stir the chicken with a little vegetable oil, but make sure to cut it according to your desire before adding it to the pot and starting cooking.

3. Cooking tips

– Avoid using a slow cooker to cook frozen chicken. Health officials do not recommend cooking frozen chicken in a slow cooker because this type of slow cooking at a low temperature provides an ideal environment for bacteria to develop, even if the slow cooker cooks to the maximum. This is why you should always thaw your chicken before cooking it in the slow cooker.

– Do not cook frozen chicken in the microwave. Maintaining a stable microwave temperature is difficult, which is why this cooking method can potentially cause bacteria to multiply.

– If you need to quickly cook chicken, thaw it in the microwave, then cook it in the oven or in a pan right after.

– Do not let chicken thawed in the microwave, stay at room temperature for too long, as this can cause the bacteria it contains to multiply.

Originally published on Live Positively.