We’re all aware that purchasing frozen meat at the local store is a lot easier on the pocketbook, but there’s definitely a reason why it’s cheaper. You see, not everyone has the time to endure the defrosting and thawing process, especially if you want to sink your teeth into that delicious ribeye right away.
So, what do we all do when we want to defrost our meat quickly? Some pretty dangerous stuff, to be honest. Don’t think you’re part of this group? Answer us this question, then: Have you ever left a piece of frozen meat to defrost on the side? If you have, then you have unknowingly exposed yourself and your family to some potentially deadly bacteria.
Below are 8 common meat defrosting mistakes that you need to stop making right now!
1. You’re Defrosting Your Meat in Hot water
Believe it or not, but defrosting that primo ground beef in hot water can actually get you in hot water. The high temperatures in this meat bath serve as a ripe breeding ground for dangerous bacteria. Instead, place your packaged meat in a vat of ice-cold water to speed up the thawing process safely.
2. You Defrost Your Meat near its Garnishing and Spices
If the meat is still thawing and you place it near garnishes and spices, then it could make a lot of people really sick. Therefore, you should take extra care to ensure that your meat is fully defrosted before you introduce it to any other ingredients.
3. You Place Your Meat on the Counter to Defrost
Many of us aren’t away that thawing at room temperature invites a ton of incredibly dangerous bacteria to breed on the meat. Instead, thaw in the fridge or ice-cold water, or, if you’re in a hurry, the microwave works well, too!
4. You Wash Unpackaged Meat to Speed up the Thawing Process
There is no reason to wash frozen or thawed meat. Doing so will only spread bacteria to your sinks, countertops, and sponges.
5. You Refreeze a Piece of Meat That Has Been Thawed at Room Temperature
If you’ve been playing close attention, then you should already know that you should never ever thaw something at room temperature, right. Therefore, it makes sense that you wouldn’t refreeze it, just to let it thaw on the counter again.
6. You Defrost Your Frozen Turkey with a Blowdryer
Yes, apparently this is a thing. We cannot believe that we have to tell you this, but please don’t do it! Not only is this thawing method way too time-consuming for our liking, but the meat will not defrost evenly, which can make for increased bacteria production.
7. You Defrost Thick Cuts of Meat on the Skillet
Sure, you can get away with cooking ground and thinly-sliced frozen meats right on the skillet, but it won’t work out too well if your cut is a thick one. In the best case, it will turn out tough, and in the worst case, it could be severely undercooked at its center.
8. You Don’t Wash Your Hands after Handling Defrosting Meat
Just because the meat is frozen it doesn’t mean that there isn’t plenty of bacteria on its surface that can be spread all over your home later. Always wash your hands after handling defrosting meat.