How to Cook Chicken Breasts from Frozen

How to Cook Chicken Breasts from Frozen

Looking for a fast way to cook frozen chicken? Today I’m sharing my foolproof recipe to bake chicken—no need to thaw chicken for this recipe. Learn how to safely oven-bake chicken, cook frozen chicken in your slow cooker, and get tips for cooking frozen chicken in your pressure cooker. Try these foolproof methods on your next meal plan.

If I had to point the finger at where I began to realize the beauty in make-ahead meals, it would be at this bag of frozen chicken that I cook each week for our family. 

This easy cooking tutorial is just what you need for your sandwiches and wraps. The best part is that you can prepare chicken in bulk for your week right from its frozen state with my easy technique.

How to Cook Chicken Breasts from FrozenFor our family of four, I prepare three pounds of chicken each week (one frozen bag of chicken breasts from ALDI, to be exact!), and we usually plow through these three pounds by Wednesday or Thursday of the week.

I can attest to the fact that we never have leftovers with this recipe.

I started making a habit of baking this chicken, on grocery day, as I put the rest of the food away.

For five minutes of prep work, it has saved us at least a hundred bucks a month. Just think how much I am saving by eating at home instead of a Panera visit!

Before we begin, here are a few commonly asked questions about cooking frozen chicken!

What are the guidelines for safely cooking frozen chicken?

It is essential to follow the USDA guidelines when preparing poultry. For example, the USDA states explicitly, “Do not cook frozen chicken in a slow cooker or the microwave; thaw it before cooking.”

Chicken can be cooked though from the frozen state in the oven or on the stove. Expect your cooking time to be about 50% longer if you do not thaw your chicken first.

Can you put frozen chicken in your crockpot?

The USDA advises NOT to put frozen chicken in your slow cooker because the internal temperature does not rise fast enough to meet food safety standards.

How long is frozen chicken good for?

A bag of frozen chicken from your supermarket should last approximately nine months, according to the USDA.

The prepared, cooked chicken, though, should be used within three months of freezing.

What is the safe internal temperature of chicken?

A safe internal temperature of 165° Fahrenheit (75° Celsius) is recommended by the USDA. An instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the chicken breast is always your best guide. This is my favorite meat thermometer.

How Can I Adjust this Cooking Technique for a Large Family or Gathering?

The best investment that I’ve made is buying two of these jumbo baking sheets! They fit perfectly in a standard oven! With these baking sheets, you can easily double this recipe.

How long can you keep cooked chicken in the refrigerator?

Properly stored, cooked chicken will last for 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator.

Glass containers with airtight lids are my favorite for storing. When taking to potlucks, I rely on these inexpensive plastic containers for transporting.

How to Cook Chicken Breasts from Frozen

How to Cook Chicken Breasts from Frozen

Here are 3 techniques to cook frozen chicken breasts!

How to Cook Chicken Breasts from FrozenHow to Cook Chicken Breasts from FrozenFrozen Chicken in the OvenBaked Frozen ChickenBaked Frozen Chicken

How to Bake Frozen Chicken

I have had people ask me at potlucks and gatherings how I bake my frozen chicken. After testing different temperatures of cooking frozen chicken and spice combinations, I am thrilled to share my favorite recipe.

This is the recipe I rely upon for topping salads, making chicken wraps, or as an accompaniment to a brown rice bowl.

Spread your frozen chicken breasts on two cookie sheets.

Don’t love the clean-up?

Consider lining the baking sheets with parchment paper or a nonstick heavy-duty aluminum foil.

I love these parchment squares because they make the whole clean-up process a little easier.

Brush or drizzle your chicken breasts with olive oil, salt generously, and finish with your favorite seasoning.

My secret ingredient (and this is no endorsement- just a HUGE fan!) is this Mrs. Dash Tomato Basil Garlic seasoning mix.

I found this seasoning mix in the spice aisle, and it makes such a fantastic dry rub on the chicken that it tastes as good as anything you would get in a restaurant.

Since it is salt-free, I layer on the salt just the way I like, which helps enhance the chicken’s flavor.

Baking frozen chicken is safe, according to the USDA.

Frozen Chicken Breast Baked and SlicedMy secret ingredient (and this is no endorsement- just a HUGE fan!) is this Mrs. Dash Tomato Basil Garlic seasoning mix.

I found this seasoning mix in the spice aisle, and it makes such a fantastic dry rub on the chicken that it tastes as good as anything you would get in a restaurant.

Since it is salt-free, I layer on the salt just the way I like, which helps enhance the chicken’s flavor.

Baking frozen chicken is safe, according to the USDA.

How to Boil Frozen Chicken

Boiling chicken is another safe and effective way to prepare shredded chicken for your recipes. Add a cup of chicken stock (or broth) and 4-5 frozen chicken breasts in a large pot.

Bring this all to a boil and then simmer for 20 minutes or until you have reached 165° Fahrenheit (75° Celsius).

Remember, if you are unsure if your chicken is done, a meat thermometer is a cook’s best friend. First, make sure the internal temperature of your chicken is 165 degrees.

Instant Pot Shredded Chicken from MomAdvice.com

 

How to Pressure Cook Frozen Chicken

You may recall my tutorial for preparing frozen chicken in your pressure cooker. My Instant Pot Shredded Chicken recipe is one of our most popular and is my favorite meal prep technique.

You can read a full tutorial on pressure cooking frozen chicken (or fresh chicken) in this post.

This recipe calls for 1 cup chicken broth on the bottom and resting seasoned frozen chicken on top.

Once again, the cooking time on frozen chicken varies based on the size of the breast.

If the chicken breasts are small, 12 minutes of cooking time at high pressure works great.

Average size chicken breasts will take about 14 minutes. That means, in less than 30 minutes of effort, you will have chicken for a week’s worth of meals.

Large pieces are best at 16 minutes.

Instant Pot Shredded Chicken from MomAdvice.com

click on pictures or click here for tutorial

Be sure to visit the entire tutorial to learn more.

Once the Instant Pot beeps, make sure your pressure cooker turns off (and doesn’t start the, “keep warm,” setting. Allow it to release naturally for ten minutes.

Once the ten minutes of pressure release are done, you can open the pot and shred your chicken.

I like to pour a bit of the chicken broth (or stock) on top to help the meat retain its moisture.

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Bake Chicken Breasts From Frozen
Author: 
Recipe type: Main Dish
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 servings
 
An easy way to prepare frozen chicken in bulk for salads, wraps, and as the main attraction for your family's week.
Ingredients
  • 3 pounds frozen boneless chicken breasts
  • Mrs. Dash Tomato Basil Seasoning
  • Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • Kosher Salt & Pepper
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven for 375 degrees and spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray.
  2. Spread the frozen chicken breasts out over one or two cookie sheets.
  3. Drizzle a little olive oil over the chicken breasts and then sprinkle liberally with the seasoning mix, kosher salt and fresh black pepper.
  4. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.
  5. Allow the chicken to rest ten to fifteen minutes (to allow the juices to redistribute within the meat). Dice or shred for your recipes for the week.

 

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Looking for recipes that use shredded chicken? Check out these ideas!

Use shredded chicken for enchiladasuse shredded chicken in enchiladas

chicken pesto frittatause shredded chicken in a chicken pesto frittata

chicken caesar pasta saladuse roasted or shredded chicken in a chicken caesar pasta salad

Happy cooking!

How to Cook Chicken Breasts from Frozen

Published August 12, 2021 by:

Amy Allen Clark is the founder of MomAdvice.com. You can read all about her here.

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