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Sous Vide Frozen Chicken Breast is one of the best features of a sous vide machine. It’s easy, convenient, healthy and the sous vide chicken always turns out tender and juicy EVERY TIME! I almost never take the time to thaw chicken again after I discovered this method.
Every sous vide lover needs to have this frozen chicken recipe in their back pocket. Got fresh ones? Try our Sous Vide Chicken Breast Recipe.
What Is Sous Vide?
Sous vide is a French cooking technique where the food is vacuum-sealed in a bag, and then cooked for a long time to a precise temperature in a warm water bath.
Cooking Frozen Chicken Sous Vide Without Thawing
If you’re wondering whether you can sous vide frozen chicken, you’re in luck. You’ll never need to take out the meat ahead of the time, waiting for it to thaw before cooking. Cooking frozen chicken has never been easier and simpler. It’s completely a game changer!
We are back on the Sous Vide bandwagon again today with one of my favorite recipes: Sous Vide Frozen Chicken Breast. This is my go-to recipe as it’s versatile and you can use the cooked chicken for sandwiches, tacos, salads, casseroles, or quesadillas.
Benefits Of Sous Vide Frozen Chicken Breasts
You’ll be amazed at how well your chicken breasts come out of that magic sous vide water bath – especially straight from the freezer! It’s tender, juicy, and perfectly cooked edge-to-edge! That’s why I rarely take chicken out of freezer to thaw before cooking.
I’m totally obsessed with the Sous Vide Method like so many other people, as it guarantees the result, producing restaurant-quality food. If you’re looking for more sous vide chicken recipes, try our Sous Vide Shredded Chicken and Sous Vide Fried Chicken, from fresh or frozen!
How To Sous Vide Frozen Chicken Breast (Step-by-Step Instructions)
- Preheat the sous vide circulator to 149°F (65°C).
- Place the frozen chicken in a zip-top bag.
- Arrange in a single layer and vacuum seal the bag using the water displacement method.
- Cook for 1.5 hours.
- Remove the chicken breasts from the bag and enjoy!
Tips And Tricks For Sous Vide Chicken
- Prepare the chicken before freezing: After you bring the fresh chicken breasts home, season them with your favorite spices, and arranging them in one single layer in a zip-top bag. Vacuum seal using water displacement method and then store them in the freezer. This allows you to drop the bag into the sous vide water bath directly without any preparation later! (It also helps to avoid the freezer burn.)
- Make sure your chicken is arranged in one single layer in the vacuum-sealed bag. I cannot stress enough how important it is to place them in a single layer. If your frozen breasts are frozen on top of each other, they cannot get cooked properly. (You won’t have this problem if you freeze them in a single layer as mentioned above, but if you do need to separate them, you can place them under running water).
- Don’t discard the juices in the bag. They’re great for making soup.
- If you want to jazz up your chicken, try this Sous Vide Teriyaki Chicken recipe – you won’t regret it!
- Looking for an easy side dish to go along with it? Try this Sous Vide Mashed Potatoes – so easy and delicious!
What Temperature Should I Sous Vide Frozen Chicken Breasts?
I recommend cooking them at 149°F (65°C), which produces super tender and juicy meat. If you’d like to try another doneness, below are the guidelines:
|140°F / 60°C||Very soft, tender and juicy|
|149°F / 65°C||Tender and juicy|
|165°F / 74°C||Traditional tender and slightly chewy|
How Long Does It Take To Sous Vide Chicken Breasts From Frozen?
The chicken breasts are ready after 1.5 hours, but it’s ok for you to leave them in the sous vide water bath for as long as 4 hours. (They can get mushy if you cook them longer than that.)
How To Seal The Bag Without A Vacuum Sealer?
If you don’t have a vacuum-sealer, you can seal the bag using the the water displacement technique: just seal all but one corner of the bag, and then slowly place it into a large pot of cold water. Make sure everything below the zip-line is covered by water, then seal the rest of the bag.
If your vacuum-sealed chicken tends to float, you can use a heavy kitchen item to weigh it down. Make sure all the meat is fully submerged while the seams of the zip-top bag are above the water.
Best Way To Sous Vide Frozen Chicken: Add Seasoning Before Freezing
If you are going to sous vide frozen chicken, you want to rub seasonings all over the meat before placing into a sous vide bag and freezing. Why? You’ll get far better flavor penetration than trying to do so when the meat is frozen hard. Then you can proceed to sous vide directly from the freezer.
How To Finish Sous Vide Chicken Breasts (Searing Vs Grilling)
After the sous vide process, you’ll want to sear the chicken breasts to develop caramelized flavors on the outside and create an attractive serving presentation. You can do this in a skillet or on the grill.
More Sous Vide Chicken Recipes
- Sous Vide Boneless Chicken Breasts
- Sous Vide Chicken Wings
- Sous Vide Chicken Drumsticks
- Sous Vide Chicken Thighs
Will my chicken come out less delicious if I cook it from frozen?
Not at all! Your chicken will taste the same as the ones cooked from fresh. Just make sure it doesn’t get freezer burn.
Do I need to add seasonings?
You can add the seasoning before you freeze the chicken, or it’s ok to cook it unseasoned, especially when you are going to add it to other dishes.
How long does frozen chicken breast last in the freezer?
Raw chicken breasts can last up to 9 months in the freezer, but it depends on how well wrapped they are. You can get the full 9 months when properly vacuum-sealed, but perhaps only 6 months in a ziptop freezer bag.
Can I sous vide other frozen chicken parts (wings, thighs, or whole chicken)?
Yes, sous vide works well for any kind of frozen chicken including wings, thighs and an entire chicken. Note that for a whole chicken, you will need larger sous vide bags than for chicken pieces.
Sous Vide Frozen Chicken Breast Recipe
- 1 ½ lb chicken breasts (frozen, you can use skinless boneless, or bone-in skin-on)
- Optional seasoning such as salt pepper, and garlic powder
- Fill a large container or pot with water. Attach the sous vide precision cooker and set the temperature to 149°F (65°C). If you’d like to try other temperatures, see the temperature guide in the post.
- Place frozen chicken breasts to a zip-top bag in a single layer. (If they’re stuck on top of each other, you’ll need to separate them first.)
- Season with optional spices if using any.
- Seal the bag using the “water displacement” technique: seal all but one corner of the bag, and slowly place it in cold water. Make sure everything below the zip-line is covered by water. Then seal the rest of the bag. (You can use a vacuum sealer if you have one).
- Place the bag in the water bath and cook for 1.5 hours. (Make sure the meat is fully submerged while the seams of the bag are above water.)
- When the timer goes off, remove the chicken from the bag. They’re ready for salads, sandwiches, tacos, etc.
- Save the juices for soup.
- Store: refrigerate in an airtight container and they can last for 4-5 days.
Editor note: Originally published May 18, 2020 and updated Feb 3, 2021.