Scallops taste heavenly when freshly pan-seared. However, if you have ended up with leftover scallops, by no means should you let this delicious seafood go to waste.
Instead, store leftover scallops properly and reheat them whenever you want to have a nice dinner ready within a few minutes.
But how do you reheat scallops? The best way to reheat scallops is in the oven. The oven gets the scallops evenly heated within 10-15 minutes without drying them out. You can also reheat scallops on the stovetop, using a non-stick pan or skillet. It is not recommended to reheat scallops in the microwave.
This article is your guide to reheating leftover scallops. Continue reading for step-by-step instructions for reheating scallops in the oven and on the stovetop, as well as why microwaving scallops is not a good idea.
You can certainly reheat scallops. However, there are two things you should keep in mind. First off, if you want to keep leftover scallops for later use, make sure to store them properly. Check out this article on how to freeze and store scallops.
There are two ways to store cooked scallops in the fridge. You can store them in an airtight container.
When doing this, make sure the container isn’t too big for the number of scallops you are storing in it. Otherwise, the contact of the scallops with air locked in the container will cause them to deteriorate.
Alternatively, you can wrap scallops tightly in aluminum foil and a layer of cling wrap to make them airtight and then put them in an airtight container for extra protection.
Scallops stored properly in the fridge can be reheated and consumed within 3-4 days.
Secondly, choose the right reheating method. Scallops are tricky to get right when cooking them in the first place, let alone reheating cooked scallops without affecting their texture and flavor.
Scallops reheated using poor techniques can become rubbery or dry. Additionally, failing to reach the right internal temperature may even make scallops dangerous for consumption.
When reheating scallops, their internal temperature should be 125-140 °F.
Another problem is overcooking the scallops. And if you know anything about cooking scallops, it is probably that you should never overcook them. Overcooked scallops are chewy and rather unenjoyable.
What Is the Best Way to Reheat Scallops?
Getting scallops evenly heated is not as easy as it seems, as the outside may burn if you keep the scallops on the heat for too long. For this reason, the best way to reheat scallops is in the oven.
The temperature within the oven is even, meaning that the food gets evenly heated. It is also one of the methods that is least likely to dry your scallops out, or make them rubbery.
Here are step-by-step instructions for reheating scallops in the oven:
- Before you place scallops in the oven, take them out of the fridge and let them come to room temperature. Otherwise, the center of the scallops may remain cold even when the sides start burning. In this case, however, make sure to not leave the scallops out longer than 2 hours for safety reasons.
- Preheat the oven to 275°F.
- Put the scallops on the pan or any other oven-safe dish.
- Splash some water on the scallops. Water droplets will create steam and contribute to the scallops heating evenly without losing moisture.
- Cover the dish with aluminum foil. It will lock in the heat as well as prevent the top part of the scallops from getting burnt.
- Put the scallops into the oven for up to 15 minutes. Check after 10 minutes to see if the scallops are properly heated. If so, take them out. If you have a thermometer, it would be wise to check the internal temperature of the scallops, making sure it has reached 125°F.
- Once properly heated, take the scallops out of the oven and serve with your favorite sides.
The stovetop is the second-best reheating method for scallops. It allows you to avoid burnt edges and a cold center.
Reheating scallops in a pan or skillet may save you a few minutes. However, when using this reheating method, stay close to the stovetop, as it will only take a matter of minutes for the scallops to get burnt.
Here’s how to reheat scallops on the stovetop:
- Take the scallops out of the fridge and allow them to come to room temperature.
- Put the scallops in a non-stick pan.
- The heat on the stovetop should be low to medium. Don’t use high heat, as the outside of the scallops will quickly get burnt while the inside stays ice cold.
- Add a splash of water into the pan.
- Cover the pan with the lid to lock in the steam and get the scallops evenly heated.
- Flip the scallops after a few minutes to get a nice color on both sides, as well as make sure they are heated evenly.
- Check the internal temperature of the scallops to see if it is within the range of 125-140°F. If yes, take the scallops out of the pan and serve.
Tip: Scallops can be luxurious even when reheated. And the best way to make reheated scallops taste as if they are freshly seared is by topping them with delicious lemon sauce.
To make a lemon sauce for scallops, melt a few cubes of butter on low heat. Once the butter reaches the point of browning and acquires a nutty aroma, add some finely chopped shallots.
Remove the sauce from heat and add chopped parsley and thyme. Add the key ingredient of the sauce – freshly squeezed lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Can You Reheat Scallops in the Microwave?
Microwaving is a great reheating method for many foods and dishes, but not for seafood.
Avoid reheating scallops in the microwave if you have other options to go for. When microwaving scallops, keep your expectations low, as the microwave oven will overcook the outside of the scallops while leaving the center cold.
Additionally, microwaving scallops can cause them to become dry and rubbery, the exact opposite of what you need the scallops to be.
If you do decide to reheat scallops in the microwave, don’t forget to add a few drops of water to them. Cover the microwave-safe bowl with cling wrap to lock the steam in the bowl.
This will help you reheat the scallops as evenly as possible.
How to Reheat Frozen Scallops?
If 3-4 days isn’t enough for you to eat leftover scallops, you can freeze scallops for safe storage and a much longer shelf life.
If the temperature of the freezer is constantly 0°F, scallops will remain safe for consumption for 3-6 months. However, we recommend thawing and reheating them within the first 2 to 3 months.
The longer you keep the scallops in the freezer the less flavorful they may become.
Freeze scallops tightly wrapped in foil and food wrap. Or use an airtight container to freeze scallops. Whenever you decide to reheat frozen cooked scallops, transfer them from the freezer into the fridge the previous day.
You can reheat defrosted scallops the same way you do scallops stored in the fridge. However, it is recommended to use previously frozen cooked scallops in watery dishes, such as stews and casseroles.
How to Reheat Pasta With Scallops?
If you have leftover pasta with scallops and want to reheat it for lunch or dinner, there is a quick and easy method you can use.
Here’s how to reheat pasta with scallops:
- Take the scallops out of the pasta.
- Transfer the pasta onto a microwave-safe plate and add a splash of water.
- Reheat the paste in the microwave for a minute or longer until it is warm. In the meantime, the scallops will come to room temperature.
- Take the pasta out of the microwave and add in the scallops.
- Stir everything up to get the scallops warm, and voila! You have perfectly heated pasta with scallops.
You don’t always have to use the microwave. Reheat the pasta in your preferred way. The key is adding in the scallops when you have just turned the heat off and the pasta is still hot.
In fact, you can use this reheating method not only for pasta but other foods too, such as rice and newly seared vegetables.
How to Reheat Bacon-Wrapped Scallops?
Scallops wrapped in bacon are one of the most popular and well-loved scallop dishes. If you have bacon-wrapped scallop leftovers, reheat them in the oven for the best results. The key is not letting the bacon burn.
Here’s how to reheat bacon-wrapped scallops:
- Put the bacon-wrapped scallops in a greased pan.
- Put the pan on the highest shelf of the oven and turn on medium to high heat.
- Heat the scallops in the oven for around 25 minutes. Keep an eye on the scallops, as you need to get the scallops hot without burning the bacon.
If you decide to reheat bacon-wrapped scallops on the stovetop, use a non-stick pan. Use medium to high heat to reheat the scallops and get the bacon wrapping crispy without burning it.
Reheating bacon-wrapped scallops on the stove will take you 3-4 minutes.