Can you freeze pepperoni? Yes, it can be frozen, whether as a step in prepping it (making it easier to grate) or extending its shelf life.
And since bacterial and fungal can easily attack and spoil it when exposed to air for long, you may want to consider freezing them.
It is the most effective way to keep the integrity of those sliced pepperonis intact for more than 3 months with little or no change in taste and freshness – that’s if stored properly.
And that is what I’m about to share with you on this page.
Table of Contents
- What is Pepperoni?
- What Happens If You Don’t Freeze Leftover Pepperoni?
- 3 Telltale Signs Your Pepperoni Is Going Bad
- 1. Slimy and sticky pepperoni
- 2. Developing Unusual smells
- 3. Changes in the taste
- How To Freeze Pepperoni In 3 Simple Steps
- Step 1: Slice and divide in batches
- Step 2: Place it in a sealed container
- Step 3: Label the package
- Step 4: Put in the freeze
- Conclusion | Can You Freeze Pepperoni?
What is Pepperoni?
What makes pepperoni so unique are the spices: the paprika and chili pepper, which gives it this smoky aroma and taste, as well as the bright red color.
Furthermore, pepperoni is also a type of salami often used as a topping in pizzas, but it’s versatile than you thought.
Whether it is a stick of hard pepperoni or a pre-sliced package, there are tons of delicious ways to use this palatable meat — ways that go far beyond putting it on top of pizza.
You can use pepperoni in casseroles, omelets, sandwiches, cheese plates, as well as bread.
Read Also: Can You Freeze Hollandaise Sauce?
What Happens If You Don’t Freeze Leftover Pepperoni?
There’s no denying that pepperoni is a cured meat –which means sodium nitrates and salt are added as curing agents to slow spoilage and prevent the growth of unwanted microorganisms.
Therefore, it doesn’t need to be frozen — as merely keeping it in the refrigerator will preserve it for long.
But the harsh truth is: not for so long.
The worst-case scenario is when opened and kept at room temperature the shelf life is threatened.
Moreover, pepperoni isn’t as straightforward when it comes to storage, spoilage, and shelf life as one would like it to.
But if you ask me, freezing is the most effective way to maintain your pepperoni taste and freshness for a considerable period.
Whether it’s a whole stick, wrapped in plastic, or the slices, sealed in a container or freezer bags, it is much better than putting it in the fridge.
And if you’re a first-time pepperoni buyer, you’re probably wondering for how long it will last once opened.
Well, sliced pepperoni will survive in the refrigerator for only a few weeks, if not longer. Whereas, in the freezer, it will last for at least 8 months and conceivably up to a year.
However, there is no 100‰ guaranteed time frame.
But among all, the biggest spoilage is not storing it at all. Over time the fat can turn rancid if exposed to oxygen, heat, or light.
3 Telltale Signs Your Pepperoni Is Going Bad
Watch out for any signs of going bad specific to any deli meat – specifically sliced pepperoni.
1. Slimy and sticky pepperoni
If your pepperoni looks or feels sticky, slimy, or spot a glimpse of discolorations, it indicates that bacteria have attacked it.
In this situation, it is best to get rid of the pepperoni.
2. Developing Unusual smells
Also, check for any distinctive odor. If it smells putrid or rancid (rotten), then it’s time to chuck your pepperoni away.
Any rancid odor indicates the fats in your pepperoni have been oxidized by the air.
3. Changes in the taste
Now you can cut a pepperoni slice and give it a try. If it tastes good, it is okay to use. Otherwise, toss it into the trash can.
And this usually occurs whenever the pepperoni is not well wrapped and left open.
Although in this situation, many may cut the dry part and enjoy the rest. But it’s up to you, though.
How To Freeze Pepperoni In 3 Simple Steps
Step 1: Slice and divide in batches
It’s always ideal to slice and divide your remaining pepperoni so you can use your freezer’s space more efficiently and store it conveniently.
Furthermore, this also allows you to portion your usage. You don’t have to thaw out the whole batches whenever you intend to use just a small portion.
Step 2: Place it in a sealed container
Use sealable containers. It can be airtight food packs or boxes. If you don’t have one of those, you can as well use reusable and resealable plastic bags like Ziplocs.
The reason will recommend any of these sealed containers is because they prevent moisture from coming in contact with your stick. SO it can preserve much longer.
Step 3: Label the package
It is always better to monitor the sausage from time to time.
So, Ensure to label the package with two dates: the date when you opened the packaging and the best before date.
Step 4: Put in the freeze
After all said and done, you can now put your sealed pepperoni in the freezer.
Want to refreeze pepperoni afterward?
Here is how:
Step 1: Choose the freezing bag you will use: When choosing a bag, we recommend picking the one that is closest to the expiration date.
Step 2: Defrost by removing the freezer bag from the freezer in the fridge at least one day or two nights before the day of cooking it.
Step 3: Remove it from the fridge. Leave it out in the open.
Step 4: You can now cook it.
Conclusion | Can You Freeze Pepperoni?
Also, you may be tempted to refreeze any remaining thawed pepperoni. But it is not ideal.
The reason is that even if it has been frozen and unfrozen correctly and is still edible, refreezing them the taste and texture will suffer.
Even after freezing them one time you may notice a slight difference. So to enjoy the pepperoni at the best quality, avoid refreezing.
Read Also: Can You Freeze Serrano Peppers?