If you’re a fish lover, you know that tilapia is a delicious option. It’s milder and lighter in flavor than other fish, which makes it perfect for cooking with herbs and spices. You can also use the fish plain or pair it with other ingredients to create a tasty dish. But what if you have leftover cooked tilapia? Can you freeze cooked tilapia?
Can You Freeze Cooked Tilapia?
Yes, you can freeze cooked tilapia and it is a great way to save money and time. You can freeze the whole fish or cut it into small pieces. Store them in an airtight container or freezer bag, which will keep them fresh for up to four months.
How to Freeze Cooked Tilapia
Freezing cooked tilapia is an ideal way to preserve your fish for later use. You can either freeze the whole fish or cut them into smaller pieces.
Step 1: Allow To Cool Down
After the tilapia has been cooked, allow it to cool down to room temperature. If you try to freeze it while it’s still warm, the heat will cause condensation in the freezer bag. This will make the fish become soggy, which is something you don’t want.
Never allow tilapia to sit out for longer than 2 hours. Keeping them out at room temperature for longer than that could cause them to be contaminated with bacteria.
Step 2: Place Into Storage Container
Place the whole fish or cut pieces of fish in freezer bags or containers, leaving about an inch at the top for expanding air when frozen (you can also use foil if you’re freezing it).
You can also add spices or other flavorings at this point if you wish (such as lemon juice or cilantro).
Step 3: Seal Tightly
Seal up your bag tightly and place it inside another bag before placing it in your freezer. This will keep odors from contaminating other foods in your freezer while still allowing them room for expansion during freezing (if using bags).
Step 3: Label and Freeze
Make sure that when freezing cooked tilapia (or any other food item), everything is properly labeled with date and contents so that you can use them at a later date without worrying about whether they’re still safe to eat and how long they’ve been stored there.
After you’ve labeled the bag or container, place them into the freezer for storage.
How Long Does Cooked Tilapia Last In the Freezer?
You can freeze cooked tilapia for up to four months.
However, the longer it stays in the freezer, the more likely it is that your fish will get freezer burn. To prevent this, make sure the fish is sealed tightly in an airtight container or freezer bag before placing it in your freezer.
How To Defrost Cooked Tilapia
One of the easiest ways to defrost cooked tilapia is to place it in the refrigerator overnight. The cold temperatures will cause the fish to defrost slowly and evenly, which minimizes the risk of bacteria growing while the meat thaws.
If you need your tilapia sooner than that, try one of these methods:
Defrost Cooked Tilapia in Cold Water
To defrost cooked tilapia, place it in a container and cover it with cold water. Leave the tilapia in the cold water until it is completely thawed.
Defrosting Cooked Tilapia in the Microwave
The microwave is one of the easiest ways to defrost frozen foods like cooked tilapia. The microwave method is fast and works well if you only need to partially thaw a small amount of food.
Place the cooked tilapia on a microwave-safe plate and cover it with plastic wrap.
Cover the wrapped tilapia with another plate, upside down, to keep it from drying out while it defrosts.
Microwave on high for 30 seconds per ounce of tilapia (about 2 ounces). Let stand for 5 minutes before removing it from the microwave. This will ensure that all parts of your fish are completely thawed.
Can You Refreeze Cooked Tilapia?
Yes, you can refreeze cooked tilapia. The main concern is whether or not it has been thawed, and if so, how long it’s been thawed. If you have cooked tilapia in your refrigerator that has been thawed for more than two days, you should discard it.
If it’s been less than a day, you can refreeze your fish. Simply put them back into the airtight container or freezer bag, seal it tightly, and place them back into the freezer.
When freezing cooked tilapia for the second time, the quality of the fish will deteriorate. Once you’ve thawed them again, the flesh will break apart and may lose some of its flavor.
Does Cooked Tilapia Freeze Well?
Cooked tilapia freezes well, but not as well as other types of fish. Freezing cooked tilapia works best when you freeze it immediately after cooking so it retains its texture and flavor.
However, this isn’t always possible if you don’t plan ahead or aren’t sure how much cooked tilapia you will need later on. In these cases, freezing cooked tilapia in an airtight container is still a good option because it keeps the fish from drying out during storage.
Instead of throwing away any tilapia leftovers, you can freeze them. This will help preserve them for another 4 months until you’re ready to eat them again.
Kate has been in the food business for over 20 years. Worked as a cook at several buffets which include Old Country Buffet, Five Star Buffet, and Ichiban Buffet. Now, I’m mostly at home cooking for my family, caring for chickens and ducks, and tending the garden.