5

votes

Grass fed beef thawing

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created November 14, 2011 at 11:02 PM

Hello! I may be the most cautious food prep girl in the world, but I am REALLY hoping I havent completely ruined two pounds of grass fed beef (ground). So, I am going to ask this in hopes of somebody making me feel confident that all is well and I dont have to throw it out. I took (2) 1lb. packages of beef straight out of the freezer at 1:30pm and put them into a pan full of cold water. I had to run some errands which took much longer than anticipated. The beef sat in the water until I returned at 5pm. By the time I got to it, it was 5:15 and the beef was cool, not room temperature but certainly not cold. I immediately put it into a skillet and browned it because I am making chili out of it, but as it cooked I kept freaking myself out and am now at a screeching hault with what to do. It smelled fine, if that helps? Thanks for any input.

D12142c8cafb16d9af10b3362cb8fb62

(1590)

on November 30, 2011
at 10:43 AM

I guess; didn't look particually good. Amazing how good HCl acid is hm? :-)

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on November 30, 2011
at 09:12 AM

I've read that there is a huge difference food poisening-wise between grass fed and corn fed beef. Corn fed beef can harbor acid resistant ecoli bacteria, whereas the strains of ecoli you find in grass fed (this, of course, is barring outside contamination during grinding) don't survive digestion in the human gut well, and at most you'll get a mild case of diarrhea.

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on November 30, 2011
at 09:08 AM

Sounds like you aged the beef in your fridge, supposedly that makes it much tastier.

C56baa1b4f39839c018180bf63226f7d

(3499)

on November 30, 2011
at 06:05 AM

While you should throw it out if it smells bad, most of the major foodborne illness microbes don't cause foul odors. It's not a perfect system.

C56baa1b4f39839c018180bf63226f7d

(3499)

on November 30, 2011
at 06:03 AM

Cold water is the next best thing to the fridge for defrosting while not promoting bacterial growth, and it takes far less time.

48b2a8e6d223d996957e1adaf8877eff

on November 15, 2011
at 05:41 PM

Question was not what your opinion is on thawing ground beef.

B4e1fa6a8cf43d2b69d97a99dfca262c

(10255)

on November 15, 2011
at 04:42 AM

i don't think letting ground beef come to room temp would be recommended as there is so much surface area; but i doubt you will have a problem from the description above.

0bc6cbb653cdc5e82400f6da920f11eb

(19235)

on November 15, 2011
at 12:59 AM

Not overhyped, just missunderstood.

0bc6cbb653cdc5e82400f6da920f11eb

(19235)

on November 15, 2011
at 12:37 AM

I am curious though why you put it in cold water to defrost?

0bc6cbb653cdc5e82400f6da920f11eb

(19235)

on November 15, 2011
at 12:37 AM

It is fine, don't worry about eating it.

4cef3e34563d751268a800eb9c110594

(273)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:16 PM

True! It probably took an hour to defrost and then another hour to slowly warm up.. it was probably 50 degrees or so when I got to it.

4cef3e34563d751268a800eb9c110594

(273)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:15 PM

Youre right! haha, I am so paranoid after only three hours in water. The reassurance does help though, thank you. :)

4cef3e34563d751268a800eb9c110594

(273)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:14 PM

good point, I gave it a sniff before I started to brown it and it smelled pretty neutral.

4cef3e34563d751268a800eb9c110594

(273)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:12 PM

I already browned the beef to "well done" crumbles and yes, I will be simmering it for a few hours this evening. I am traditionally a better safe than sorry kind of person, but in this case, I would hate to waste such good meat if there really isnt any harm done. I have also read that grass fed beef should theoretically be brought to room temp anyway, like you do. However, I wasnt sure if ground meat was included or just steaks.

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12 Answers

4
072fd69647b0e765bb4b11532569f16d

(3717)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:25 PM

I've gone a LOT longer than that (usually on accident) and have never suffered ill effects.

4
4b97e3bb2ee4a9588783f5d56d687da1

on November 14, 2011
at 11:10 PM

Noses are amazing. Plus cooking kills bacteria. If you cooked it, no worries, I you didn't, 99.9% most likely no worries

4cef3e34563d751268a800eb9c110594

(273)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:14 PM

good point, I gave it a sniff before I started to brown it and it smelled pretty neutral.

C56baa1b4f39839c018180bf63226f7d

(3499)

on November 30, 2011
at 06:05 AM

While you should throw it out if it smells bad, most of the major foodborne illness microbes don't cause foul odors. It's not a perfect system.

4
B4e1fa6a8cf43d2b69d97a99dfca262c

(10255)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:09 PM

i let my steaks come to room temp before i grill them rare and i have always done this and i eat a lot of steak and i am 50....nearly.

you are making chili as in long simmer time?

B4e1fa6a8cf43d2b69d97a99dfca262c

(10255)

on November 15, 2011
at 04:42 AM

i don't think letting ground beef come to room temp would be recommended as there is so much surface area; but i doubt you will have a problem from the description above.

4cef3e34563d751268a800eb9c110594

(273)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:12 PM

I already browned the beef to "well done" crumbles and yes, I will be simmering it for a few hours this evening. I am traditionally a better safe than sorry kind of person, but in this case, I would hate to waste such good meat if there really isnt any harm done. I have also read that grass fed beef should theoretically be brought to room temp anyway, like you do. However, I wasnt sure if ground meat was included or just steaks.

2
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41757)

on November 15, 2011
at 02:24 AM

Minimal bacterial growth going on coming out of a freeze. Do though, be cautious. This is ground meat, any surface contamination that was there prior to grinding the meat is homogenized ans spread throughout the ground meat. Of course, you must always question your source as well. I wouldn't touch anything but well done ground meat, unless I did the grinding.

Maybe that's why I eat very little raw food unless I control it it from field/pasture to plate.

2
E65fbf7cf9f3febf0f6bfbbd6530e87d

on November 15, 2011
at 12:16 AM

The question is not whether food should be brought to room temperature before preparing. That is obvious, if the food is too cold, you will not get the Maillard reaction which gives us that delicious complex flavor on the outside.

People offering anecdotal 'not sick' stories aren't exactly helping. Ground meats are the riskiest and ought to be thawed with some consideration. The still water is the biggest possible issue. You want to leave the water running or at least change it every thirty minutes.

http://nchfp.uga.edu/how/freeze/thawing.html

Also I would say there is as near as no difference between grass fed beef food safety and corn fed, so this is not a paleo issue per se.

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on November 30, 2011
at 09:12 AM

I've read that there is a huge difference food poisening-wise between grass fed and corn fed beef. Corn fed beef can harbor acid resistant ecoli bacteria, whereas the strains of ecoli you find in grass fed (this, of course, is barring outside contamination during grinding) don't survive digestion in the human gut well, and at most you'll get a mild case of diarrhea.

1
4cef3e34563d751268a800eb9c110594

(273)

on November 30, 2011
at 03:45 AM

Update: Chili turned out to be yummy and had no problems at all with the meat. Thanks for all of your input!

1
D12142c8cafb16d9af10b3362cb8fb62

(1590)

on November 15, 2011
at 12:56 AM

Food poisoning is overhyped in my opinion.

A healthy immune system will fight off most things; I've eaten week old, open in the fridge, past use by date beef steak... it was fine.

0bc6cbb653cdc5e82400f6da920f11eb

(19235)

on November 15, 2011
at 12:59 AM

Not overhyped, just missunderstood.

D12142c8cafb16d9af10b3362cb8fb62

(1590)

on November 30, 2011
at 10:43 AM

I guess; didn't look particually good. Amazing how good HCl acid is hm? :-)

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on November 30, 2011
at 09:08 AM

Sounds like you aged the beef in your fridge, supposedly that makes it much tastier.

1
Ed33691404d94afdc45aea0af89b7185

on November 15, 2011
at 12:01 AM

Send it to me, I'll eat it!

1
219f558c6fb724423033d983cca96d1a

(258)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:43 PM

You're fine. I've been told from the place I buy my grass fed that it should be brought to room temperature prior to cooking. It does include the ground beef.

0
13a44ea00b0c9af0b6d0f3d5f5c2cfca

(7223)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:13 PM

I also set my burgers, steaks, and roasts out for a while before cooking to let them come to room temperature--up to an hour if I'm using a dry rub on a roast.

I'm usually more of a better-safe-than-sorry kind of person, but if it was frozen when you left it couldn't have been sitting there defrosted for more than 1-2 hours, so I'm sure it's fine.

4cef3e34563d751268a800eb9c110594

(273)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:16 PM

True! It probably took an hour to defrost and then another hour to slowly warm up.. it was probably 50 degrees or so when I got to it.

0
363d0a0277a8b61ada3a24ab3ad85d5a

(4642)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:12 PM

I agree with the noses comment - give it a smell, but I am sure it is fine... it's not like you left it out for a day or something!

4cef3e34563d751268a800eb9c110594

(273)

on November 14, 2011
at 11:15 PM

Youre right! haha, I am so paranoid after only three hours in water. The reassurance does help though, thank you. :)

-1
Medium avatar

on November 15, 2011
at 04:56 AM

"Grass fed beef thawing"

Put frozen GFB in your microwave at the lowest level ("1" on mine) and go for 2 minutes. Check meat at that point, as it will continue to cook even with heat off. Perhaps go another 30-40 seconds, at same level.

BTW: I understand health concerns vis-a-vis microwaves. Thus I didn't say: stand near microwave during this process.

48b2a8e6d223d996957e1adaf8877eff

on November 15, 2011
at 05:41 PM

Question was not what your opinion is on thawing ground beef.

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