Can You Refreeze Peameal Bacon? A Guide to Proper Storage

Peameal bacon, also known as Canadian bacon, is a beloved breakfast meat praised for its lean yet robust flavor. Its texture is slightly chewy, and it has a signature sweet and salty taste from the cornmeal coating. But what if you don’t use up all the peameal bacon after defrosting it? Is it safe to refreeze this cured pork product?

An Overview of Peameal Bacon

Before diving into proper storage methods, let’s first understand what exactly peameal bacon is:

  • Peameal bacon comes from the pork loin It is cured in a brine solution

  • The meat is rolled in ground yellow cornmeal which gives it its signature crust.

  • It is leaner than regular bacon with less fat around 75% lean meat.

  • Peameal bacon is the Canadian version of American back bacon.

  • It has a sweet, salty, smoky flavor that is less overpowering than regular bacon.

  • The cornmeal crust provides great texture, adding crunch and chew.

  • Common ways to enjoy peameal bacon are pan-fried, grilled, or baked.

  • It works wonderfully in breakfast dishes, sandwiches, soups, baked beans, etc.

Now that you know the basics, let’s look at the best practices for storing peameal bacon.

Freezing Peameal Bacon

Freezing is the optimal long-term storage method for peameal bacon. Here are some tips:

  • Wrap tightly: Secure the bacon in freezer wrap or foil, squeezing out excess air. This prevents freezer burn.

  • Portion properly: Slice the slab into smaller portions based on recipe needs before freezing.

  • Use freezer bags: For ultimate convenience, place pre-portioned packets in freezer bags. Press out air.

  • Label and date: Note quantity, type of meat and freeze date on packages. Use oldest first.

  • Freeze when fresh: Only freeze factory-sealed bacon before the “best by” date.

  • Optimal freezer temp: Store peameal bacon at 0°F or below for maximum shelf life.

Properly frozen peameal bacon keeps well for 4-6 months before quality is compromised. Maintaining constant freezer temperature is key.

Thawing Peameal Bacon Safely

Always thaw frozen meat safely using one of these methods:

  • Refrigerator: Place frozen bacon on a plate to thaw in the fridge. Takes 24 hours for a 1-lb package.

  • Cold water: Submerge sealed bacon in cold tap water, changing water every 30 mins. About 1 hour thaw time.

  • Microwave: Use the “defrost” setting in short bursts, flipping occasionally. Then cook immediately.

Never leave peameal bacon to thaw on the counter at room temperature. The “danger zone” between 40-140°F allows rapid bacteria growth.

Once thawed, use peameal bacon within 3-5 days. Do not refreeze meat that has completely defrosted.

Can You Refreeze Thawed Peameal Bacon?

The USDA does not recommend refreezing raw meat products after they have been fully defrosted. However, peameal bacon may be an exception if handled properly. Here are tips for refreezing:

  • Refreeze immediately after thawing, within 1-2 days max. Do not store refrozen bacon above 0°F.

  • Do not refreeze bacon left at room temperature for over 2 hours. Discard if left out too long.

  • Cook thawed bacon immediately, then refreeze cooked leftovers in portions, wrapped airtight.

  • Check for off smells, colors, or slimy texture. Refreezing questionable bacon is not worth the risk.

  • Know that texture and moisture will degrade with each freeze-thaw cycle.

The verdict? You can likely safely refreeze thawed peameal bacon if done carefully, but freezing previously cooked portions is best. Thaw only what you plan to use immediately.

Storing Thawed Peameal Bacon in the Fridge

Once thawed either in the refrigerator, cold water or microwave, peameal bacon should be used quickly:

  • Keep thawed bacon tightly wrapped in fridge to prevent drying out.

  • Use within 3-5 days for best quality.

  • Do not refreeze bacon after it’s been refrigerated this long. Discard it.

  • Bacon kept longer than 7 days in the fridge may pose food safety risks. Always check for off odors.

The key is limiting time in the “danger zone” above 40°F as bacteria multiply rapidly at these warmer temperatures.

Cooked Peameal Bacon Storage

For storing cooked peameal bacon:

  • Let cool completely, then refrigerate in airtight containers.

  • Use within 3-4 days for optimal freshness and flavor.

  • Freeze cooked bacon for longer storage. Portion in freezer bags or containers.

  • Frozen cooked bacon keeps well for 2-3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator before using.

  • Reheat cooked frozen peameal bacon gently on the stovetop, in the microwave or oven before serving.

Proper storage of both raw and cooked peameal bacon comes down to temperature control and limiting exposure to air and bacteria.

Signs Peameal Bacon Has Spoiled

Watch for the following signs that peameal bacon has gone bad:

  • Change in color from pink to grey, green or black

  • Slime formation

  • Strange odor that is sour or rancid

  • Dry, white freezer burn patches

  • Mold growth

  • Weird soft or slimy textures

When in doubt, remember the old adage “when in doubt, throw it out” applies to suspect bacon too. Don’t risk getting sick from eating spoiled peameal bacon.

Safely Enjoy This Canadian Classic

When handled properly, peameal bacon is very forgiving and can be refrozen without too much quality loss. Use the freezer as your friend. Portioning packages for recipes prevents waste. Thaw only what you’ll use immediately, and cook thawed peameal bacon right away.

With its signature sweet, salty, smoky flavor and hearty texture, peameal bacon is a cherished Canadian recipe ingredient. Learn how to store both raw and cooked bacon, and incorporate this delicious cured pork into more of your cooking!

can you refreeze peameal bacon

Refreezing Bacon

To keep the bacon from getting freezer burn, just wrap it well (a freezer bag works well) and put it back in the freezer within three days of letting it thaw. Freezer burn is mostly caused by air, so let out all the air in the freezer bag before you close the top.

Cooked bacon and casseroles and other dishes with bacon can also be frozen again, as long as the other ingredients are also safe to freeze.

can you refreeze peameal bacon

Freezing Bacon

Pack the bacon again when you get home from the store if you only need a few pieces at a time. Then pop the individual servings in the freezer. You can even cook the bacon first, so itll be easy to add to sandwiches.

Flash-freeze your cooked bacon on a cookie sheet. Then, transfer it to a freezer bag when its fully frozen. This will keep the pieces from sticking together, making them easy to take out when you need to. Plus, you won’t have to worry about packing each one separately. Label all of your packages of bacon, so you dont confuse them with other foods in your freezer.

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