Freezer-burnt pork chops, while safe to eat, may taste dry or have an off flavor. Picky kids can instantly detect these differences and will turn up their noses. Freezer burn occurs when meat has been stored too long or wasn't wrapped tightly enough. Moisture in the meat evaporates out of the meat, which dehydrates causing white patches and a dry appearance. Pork chops and other small cuts of meat are more likely to become freezer burnt than larger cuts. Small cuts should be stored in the freezer no longer than four to six months. To salvage freezer burnt pork chops, cook them using a slow, moist method and season them with your favorite kid-friendly herbs and seasonings.
1 Thaw the pork chops in the refrigerator overnight if they're not already defrosted.
2 Cut off the white or discolored patches on the surface of the pork chops. These areas are the most freezer burnt.
3 Salt the pork chops generously four to six hours before cooking them. Put the salted pork chops back in the refrigerator. Salting meat ahead of time adds flavor and moisture, critical for improving the texture of freezer burnt meat.
4 Place the pork chops in a slow cooker and add some apple juice or chicken broth. Season the pork chops well with rosemary, pepper, thyme or the seasonings of your choice.
5 Slow cook the pork chops for six to eight hours, or until the meat is tender.
Items you will need
- Apple juice or chicken broth
- Rosemary, thyme or other herbs
- You can also bake the pork chops in the oven in a casserole dish filled with apple juice or chicken broth, but avoid dry methods of cooking, such as grilling or roasting. These methods work best for high-quality meat that is already juicy and moist. Freezer-burnt pork chops are too dry.
- Another option is to marinate the pork chops in juice, broth, seasonings and a bit of oil. Marinating adds flavor and moisture.
- Eising/Photodisc/Getty Images