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Old 02-10-2009, 06:03 PM   #1
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Safe to reheat frozen then refrigerated chicken stock?

I made some chicken stock about a year ago then made vegetable soup out of it a couple days ago. I ate some then refrigerated the leftover soup. Is it safe to reheat the soup from the refrigerator? Reheating the soup would be reheating the stock a second time. I've learned to be careful with the chicken soup I make because I've gotten food poisoning at least twice from it. The first time I let the frozen chicken thaw too long until the water it was thawing in became warm, but the last time I cooked the chicken on low heat for a long time after thawing the chicken in the refrigerator a couple days. Could the temperature have been too low to kill the bacteria e.g. can making chicken soup in a crockpot be dangerous? Thanks for any replies.

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Old 02-10-2009, 06:29 PM   #2
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Hmmm, I've not had any trouble but then again I've always used boxed stock. As long as the soup doesn't stay out at room temp and is refrigerated, I'm sure it would be fine - just make sure that you heat it up good before you eat it :o)
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Old 02-10-2009, 07:22 PM   #3
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Reheating the soup is not what would make you sick. Improper heat and cold management is the issue as you suggested.

If you thawed the frozen stock in the fridge or in a hot pan then made soup and cooled and refrigerated the soup promptly, there should be no issue. Reheat it and enjoy.
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Old 02-11-2009, 02:04 AM   #4
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Should be fine to eat as long as it was not left out for an extremely long time before refrigerating. I always thaw meats in the fridge so there is no room for error. Basically, cold inhibits growth and heat is said to kill MOST microorganisms. If something in the chicken is already toxic before cooking, there is no guarantee that any temperature of heat will completely rid the meat of it. Also note, pan frying meat at high temperatures for long periods of time can also produce toxins.
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Old 02-11-2009, 06:52 AM   #5
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If you are making a large quantity of stock or soup then

you may need to split it into smaller amounts so it chills quickly. It can even spoil in the refrigerator if the amount is so large that it stays warm (in the danger zone) for several hours.
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Old 02-11-2009, 08:07 AM   #6
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Make sure when you reheat it to get it to at least 165 degrees for 15 seconds. I doubt you'll need the thermometer. "Really hot" should do it
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Old 02-11-2009, 08:17 AM   #7
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I made soup from homemade chicken stock regularly, freeze the stock, defrost in the kitchen overnight, (usually most has defrosted by morning) & the heating is turned off overnight, so no warm temperature for the bacteria to grow. Make the soup, re freeze any left over, then defrost as before. The only thing is I use the chicken stock & soup within a few months, I wouldn't use after say 4-5 months, but that's just me probably being ultra careful. ;0)
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Old 02-11-2009, 08:56 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenG View Post
Also note, pan frying meat at high temperatures for long periods of time can also produce toxins.
This will make for dry, tough and overcooked meat but it will not produce toxins.

Cooking chuicken at low temperatures for long periods of time is also not a good idea. First, it will dry out and be unappetizing. Second, depending on how low the temperature is, it could be unsafe and could cause food poisoning (as you suspect).
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Old 02-11-2009, 11:54 PM   #9
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This will make for dry, tough and overcooked meat but it will not produce toxins.

When certain meats are cooked at high temperatures toxic chemicals that are not found in uncooked meat, such as heterocyclic amines, are produced. Heterocyclic amines are carcinogenic chemicals produced when cooking meats such as beef, chicken, pork, or fish at high temperatures. When the amino acids (proteins) in the meat react with creatine (chemical found in muscle) at high temperatures the heterocyclic amines are produced. There are several different types of heterocyclic amines which can increase the risk of cancer. So no, you will not get a form of food poisoning from cooking at high temperatures, but it is important to alternate cooking methods to reduce the build up of those toxins.
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Old 02-12-2009, 01:43 AM   #10
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Technically - jennyema is right ... a carcinogen is not a toxin. A toxin is a poisonous substance that is a specific product of the metabolic activities of a living organism and is usually very unstable, notably toxic when introduced into the tissues, and typically capable of inducing antibody formation. E. Coli and salmonella are toxins sometimes found in undercooked meats - cooking to a temp of 160-165F kills both bacteria.

Carcinogens work by attacking, and altering, cellular DNA ... changing the cell structure and replication controls.

But, you do make a good point for not overcooking meats until they turn into inedible shoe leather!

Back to the original question ...

If the stock/soup has been handled properly - it should be just fine for 3-5 days. After that, I would toss it.

RE: Crockpot .... it depends. The older crockpots could be a food safety problem when people put frozen food in them in the morning and went merrily off to work knowing they would have a hot meal ready when they got home. The problem was that the food sat for too long in the danger zone (between 40F and 140F) for too long - and although the food was "seemingly" hot - it never got hot enough. The new crockpots cook hotter than the old ones did for that reason.
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