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How Long Does Frozen Fish Last? [Shelf Life Guide]

Frozen fish can last for a long time when it is stored correctly.

Fish should be frozen as soon as possible after being caught or purchased and should always be kept at 0 degrees Fahrenheit or colder to prevent spoilage.

It’s easy, it saves you money, and it tastes good.

To learn how long frozen fish lasts, read on.

A Complete Guide to Freezing Fish

a complete guide to freezing fish

Let’s face it, not all of us are great cooks or chefs.

It can be not easy to keep your freezer stocked with various fresh fish and seafood that you know how to cook.

This is where freezing comes in handy.

Fish freezes very well so long as they are bled out first, frozen immediately after being caught (or bought), then stored properly at 0 degrees Fahrenheit for 24 hours before thawing and cooking them again later on down the line.

Here’s what you need:

  • A sharp fillet knife for precision cuts.
  • A plastic bag large enough to hold uncooked fish.
  • Ice cubes from your ice maker machine OR ice packs.
  • .


  • Gather the items you need for your first catch of the day. Make sure to set everything out and ready before starting. You want to complete this process as quickly as possible to have minimal time between catching fish and freezing it.
  • Prepare a large ice bath by filling up a big bowl with icy cold water, then adding in enough ice cubes or packs from your freezer until they’re floating on top of the surface (about 400 lbs).
  • You’ll need room for at least double that amount if you plan on filleting more than one type of fish during today’s hunt.
  • Use tongs when removing excess pieces because any dripping will melt into unfrozen bits below.
  • Layout your plastic bag. Place a layer of ice atop the bottom to keep it cold and ensure there’s enough for each fish you’re going to be filleting – at least 400 lbs worth, if not more.
  • Remove any guts from the insides by making one long cut along both sides that goes all the way up near their heads, but leave behind as much scales or skin as possible so they won’t stick together during cooking later down the line.
  • Slice off fins carefully using an upward motion, then cut off the tail as close to its spine without messing with anything else.
  • Remove any innards by making one long cut along both sides that goes all the way up near their heads but leave behind scales or skin, so they don’t stick together during cooking later down the line.
  • Slice off fins carefully using an upward motion, then slice off tails close to spines without touching anything else. If you are unsure about how to do this, please use the internet for guidance or ask a more experienced person.
  • Place each fish in your freezer bag with ice cubes already inside it (or buy some new ones if necessary).
  • Seal shut tightly and store at 0 degrees Fahrenheit until needed again.

How Long Does Frozen Fish Last?

how long does frozen fish last

Frozen fish has very little risk of foodborne illness as long as you keep them stored at 0 degrees Fahrenheit but don’t leave them there too long.

And they’re easy to prepare by just thawing overnight then simply cooking according to the recipe instructions.

You’ll save money on fresh seafood every time you shop.

Fish that were frozen at 0 degrees Fahrenheit can typically last up from 6 months to 12 months, but it will depend on how well you store them.

However, the longer you keep them, the more likely it is that your fish will start to lose some of its quality.

Below are general guidelines on how different long types of seafood should last in the freezer:

  • Red snapper, shrimp, and scallops – 3 – 6 Months.
  • Codfish fillets – 4 – 6 Months.
  • Sea bass filets – 4 – 6 Months.
  • Salmon filets – 6 Months.
  • Tuna fillets, codfish steaks, and halibut steaks – 2 – 3 Months.
  • Fish sticks and other fish-shaped pieces of fish products (like smoked salmon) – 6 months.

If they are stored properly, they should last longer (up to 12 months).

And if you find yourself with an expired bag of shrimp or other seafood items, remember that this food is still safe so long as it’s thawed first.

Tips for Storing Frozen Fish Properly

tips for storing frozen fish properly

Here are some tips to help you store frozen fish properly:

  • Keep fish frozen or just below freezing if you plan to store it for more than a day.
  • Store on the bottom shelf of the freezer to keep the temperature constant.
  • Using moisture-vapor-proof containers such as a resealable plastic bag or hard-sided container with an airtight lid is necessary to prevent the food from absorbing freezer odors.
  • Make sure you label and date each package of fish before putting it into the freezer.
  • If you’re not going to be using frozen fish for a while, divide up the packages in order so that they can freeze individually without touching other foods, which may cause them to thaw more quickly than desired.
  • When you plan to cook frozen fish, take it out of the freezer several hours before cooking to give it time to thaw completely and for the meat’s natural juices to flow back into place.
  • If using a whole package of frozen seafood such as crab or shrimp that is packed without any liquid, be sure to replace its lost moisture by adding some water and vegetables (such as onions) while defrosting.
does frozen fish go bad

How Long Does Frozen Fish Last? Does Frozen Fish Go Bad?

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Shelf Life
Servings 1 Serving


  • Frozen fish
  • Air-tight containers or Ziplock bags
  • Labels and markers


  • Read the guide thoroughly to learn how long it lasts.
  • Label your container with the content and date and keep track of how much youu0026#x27;re using!
  • Make sure to store in an airtight container.
  • If frozen, thaw in the fridge before use. Always check for signs of spoilage before using.
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