So what can you do with freezer burnt chicken? Let’s rehydrate them in broth then make Mexican shredded chicken for a variety of uses.
Editor’s Note: Originally published July 19, 2010. Last Updated June 1, 2018, with updated text and re-edited photos. And a couple of dog pictures.
I’m so guilty. I’m sure nobody out there has ever had a full bag of freezer burnt skinless boneless chicken breast. But in the unlikely event this would happen to your stupid brother (my brothers are smarter than this), let’s see if we can do something with this.
****SEE ANOTHER OPTION CHICKEN TORTILLA SOUP ****
I found a bag of those wholesale club chicken breast in the back of the garage refrigerator freezer we replaced last week. So this poor meat is dehydrated, tough and tasteless. In other words, it is already hockey pucks.
So I need to add moisture, texture, and taste. A job ideal for Mexican. I love to have shredded chicken for burritos and enchiladas so on with the rescue.
1) Simmer in chicken broth with some spices and onion for an hour. I brought it to a boil in a large dutch oven then move to a preheated 300-degree oven with a tight lid. I did not trim any fat since it may help moisturize things.
2) Shred by hand so I could feel the texture and get rid any tough areas. There were none.
3) After re-hydration and shredding, spice it up well to cover any taste issues. I don’t think there was any.
A high 3 or low 4 will do here. Amazingly good especially considering I would have tossed them.
Recipe Notes for Freezer Burnt Chicken Breasts Rescue – Shredded Mexican
A” freezer burnt” chicken breast is really just dehydrated. It has to do with the water in the meat freezing and escaping the cells. So most methods of cooking will also pull water out of the cells.
You could try to “cut off” the burnt area, but the “good” area is also damaged. Not a good plan. The meat to too far gone for brining to work so just cooking in liquid (braising without the searing part) is the only reasonable plan. I took it as a personal challenge.
Honestly, the texture is off slightly, but most people won’t notice. And Mexican dishes with all that cheese, great sauces, etc. are great at hiding that mild shortfall.
Preheat oven to 300 convection.
Add onion, two cans chicken broth, 1 T crushed garlic, 1 t cumin, and 1 t salt to a Dutch oven over high heat. Mix well, add chicken and bring to boil. Cover with lid and move to oven for 1 hour.
Remove from oven and move breast to a plate to cool for 15 minutes then shred by hand. Move broth to a separate container.
Add chicken and all part two ingredients back into Dutch oven and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat and use in burritos, enchiladas, etc.
Freezer Burnt Chicken Breasts Rescue - Shredded Mexican
- 5 thawed freezer burnt skinless boneless chicken breast
- 28 oz chicken broth
- 2 onions - chopped medium
- 1 tablespoon garlic - crushed
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 15 oz tomato sauce
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 cup broth - from step one
- onion - most of the onion from step one
- ) Preheat oven to 300 convection
- ) Chop onions. Add onion, 2 cans chicken broth,1 T crushed garlic, 1 t cumin, and 1 t salt to Dutch oven over high heat. Mix well, add chicken and bring to boil.
- Cover with lid and move to oven for 1 hour.
- Remove from oven and move breast to a plate to cool for 15 minutes then shred by hand. Move broth to a separate container.
- Add chicken and all of part two ingredients back into Dutch oven and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes.6) Remove from heat and use in burritos, enchiladas, etc.
Nutrition is generally for one serving. Number of servings is stated above and is my estimate of normal serving size for this recipe.
All nutritional information are estimates and may vary from your actual results. This is home cooking, and there are many variables. To taste ingredients such as salt will be my estimate of the average used.
Originally published July 19, 2010.