The Meat Guy Trial Set

Thaw frozen beef, thaw frozen steak, thaw beef quickly, quick thaw steak… Don’t worry ‘bout it! Here’s how to defrost meat so you don’t ruin it!

last update date 2023-09-19 | release date 2020-05-26

How to defrost meat so you don’t ruin it!

How do you usually defrost frozen beef? Do you have a go-to method or do you just wing it? I know it may be tough to hear but you may be ruining your meat by not doing it correctly right from the start! The journey to getting delicious meat results every time starts right from the beginning: thawing meat correctly. In an ideal world, we would all be born knowing how to defrost frozen steak the right way... but... sometimes we just need to learn things the hard way, don’t we? Not to worry! We got your back on this one. We’ll be giving you some tips and tricks so you too can feel like a meat pro!

The key to thawing meat is to minimize the “drip”

These tips are not just limited to beef. It may also apply to other meat and fish as well! The key is to thaw slowly at the lowest temperature possible. That’s the mantra: low and slow...

For the purpose of this article, we’ll be calling the liquid that comes out of the meat when being thawed “drip”. Simply put, that liquid is the result of broken meat cells when exposing frozen meat to sudden high temperatures. SCIENCE. This “drip” may seem harmless, but it isn’t just water in there. The umami and nutrients of the meat also get flushed away in that drip when exposed to high temperatures reducing the quality and flavor of your meats. Nobody wants that! By thawing your meats slowly, you’re giving the individual cells time to reabsorb the water and lessen the drip resulting in delicious and nutritious meats!

The easiest way to thaw frozen meat is to leave it alone in the fridge

If you take into account all this drip talk, you may get overwhelmed. But really, thawing meat safely is as simple as transferring it from the freezer to the refrigerator and leaving it alone to contemplate its last days on Earth. Give the meat some space. It’s the least you could do, really.

The internal temperature of refrigerators varies depending on the manufacturer, but it usually ranges from 2-6 degrees. For some refrigerators, different compartments/levels mean different temperatures. Some even have designated “chillers”. Try and make sure to thaw your meat in the compartment with the lowest temperature. Refrigerators with built-in chillers will have that compartment set to ranges close to 0 degrees making it the perfect place for your meat to ruminate.

The easiest way to thaw frozen meat is to leave it alone in the fridge

The original bag that your meat comes in may have been damaged during shipping. Placing it as-is in the fridge may lead to some unwanted leakage which may be tough to clean afterwards. To avoid this, make sure to double-bag your meat before placing it in the fridge to thaw.

The easiest way to thaw frozen meat is to leave it alone in the fridge

Bigger blocks of beef take longer to loosen up

It goes without saying that the bigger the meat blocks or chunks, the longer it’ll take to thaw. Here’s the estimated thawing time for different sizes of meat.

Ground/minced meat – about 4 hours
Sliced meat – about 4 hours
1cm-thick steaks – about 8 hours
4cm-thick steaks – about 14 hours
10cm-thick meat blocks – about 36 hours

Steak meat that is roughly 1cm-thick can be thawed overnight in the refrigerator. Simply transfer it from the freezer to the refrigerator before going to bed, and you’ll wake up to a steak that’s ready to sizzle! If you’re going to thaw it in a chiller, it may take twice as long to completely thaw out. Be prepared to wait around 2-3 days for bulkier blocks of meat.

Bigger blocks of beef take longer to loosen up

How to defrost beef quickly

Good things come to those who wait! We’ll always recommend thawing meat low and slow. BUT! Some of us just don’t have the time or patience to wait that long. Not to worry. There’s another method that we recommend for those busy bees out there: thawing under running water.

Double-bag the meat and make sure there are no holes on the plastic bag. Let out as much air as you can, then tie that bag tightly. Submerge the bag in a bowl or tray filled with water, then turn the faucet on and let the water run over it.

How to defrost beef quickly

This method will result in more “drip”, but will also cut the thawing time in half! Your call.

Thawing at room temperature and refreezing = NOPE

It may be tempting to just leave your meat at room temperature and have it thawed out in record time, but doing this also exposes the meat to more bacteria and the risk of food poisoning!

We also don’t recommend refreezing meat that’s already been thawed out. Most of these frozen meats use a special freezing method during processing to reduce the damage to the meat cells. Refreezing will lead to a lot of flavor-loss. SO, make sure to consume your thawed-out meat immediately or store in the fridge and consume within 2-3 days to make sure you’re not gnawing on some bacteria-infested cardboard disguised as meat.

Do it right, and enjoy the benefits!

Do it right, and enjoy the benefits!

If you’re going to be using these meats for parties or events, make sure to plan ahead! Allot enough time for thawing so you’re not panicking at the last minute. If you’re dealing with less chunkier steaks or cuts of meat, then transferring it from the freezer to the fridge and leaving overnight should be enough time. Do it correctly right from the start, and you’ll have yourself some delicious meats!



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