How long can steak stay in the fridge after thawing?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “How long can steak stay in the fridge after thawing” with an in-depth analysis of the shelf life of thawed steak. Moreover, we are going to discuss the different ways to spot spoiled steak.

So without much ado, let’s dive in and figure out more about it.

How long can steak stay in the fridge after thawing?

If you have thawed steak in the fridge then it can be stored in the refrigerator for an additional 3-5 days.

On the other hand, if you have thawed steak in a bowl of cold water or the microwave, it is best to cook it right away.

Furthermore, cooked frozen steak can be kept in the refrigerator for 3-4 days after being thawed. On the other hand, cooked steak that has been thawed in a bowl of cold water or the microwave should be reheated and eaten right away.

How to defrost frozen steak?

When it comes to thawing steak, there are a few options available, and you can choose any of them based on your preferences.

  1. The best approach to thaw frozen steak is to put it in the refrigerator overnight and let it thaw. The thawed steak can be stored in the refrigerator for 3-5 days before cooking and eating.
  1. You can thaw the frozen steak in a dish of cold water, but it must be cooked right away.
  1. Furthermore, if you’re thawing the steak in the oven or microwave, it’s best to cook it right away.

Why is it necessary to cook a steak right away if thawed in a microwave?

The reason for cooking the steak right after thawing it in a cold water bowl or microwave is that when you do so, the temperature at the surface of the steak rises above 40 degrees Fahrenheit before the core temperature rises to 40 degrees Fahrenheit and the steak get thawed completely, which is when bacteria can start to grow on the surface quickly.

As a result, such thawed steak should be cooked as soon as possible until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Because the bacteria can only be entirely eliminated by thoroughly cooking the steak.

It’s worth noting that once the frozen steak has thawed, it should not be refrozen.

Is it possible to refrigerate the reheated steak?

Once the previously cooked refrigerated/frozen steak has been reheated, it should never be refrigerated again. Because the temperature of the steak goes above 40 degrees Fahrenheit when reheated and we know that bacteria develops rapidly between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit. 

As a result, bacteria will make their way into your steak. Thus, the reheated steak should never be refrigerated, rather it is better to consume it completely or otherwise discard the reheated leftovers properly.

How long does fresh steak stay in the fridge?

Fresh raw steak lasts in the fridge for 3-5 days if kept at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. It should be kept in plastic zipper bags on one of the refrigerator’s shelves. On the other hand, cooked steak lasts for about 3-4 days if refrigerated properly. Steak should be stored in shallow compact containers to allow it to cool quickly.

It’s worth noting that the values given above are for the steak’s expected shelf life.

How long does steak last in the freezer?

Steak lasts for 3 months in the freezer if wrapped in cling film and stored in an airtight plastic freezer bag, although it is best consumed within 1-2 months for the best quality and taste.

As a result, freezing the steak extends its shelf life significantly due to the freezer’s low temperature, which inhibits bacterial growth on the steak.

What is the best temperature to keep steak at?

Steak should be kept at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or lower at all times. Bacterial development is more rapid between the temperatures of 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit, therefore it’s best to keep your steak at a lower temperature to keep it fresh for longer.

How long does steak last at room temperature?

When kept at room temperature, steak lasts for around 2 hours.

Because bacterial growth occurs at a quicker rate between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit, steak left out for more than 2 hours should be discarded.

Furthermore, if the surrounding temperature is around 90 degrees Fahrenheit, the rotting process is accelerated, and steak left out in the open for more than an hour at such temperature should be discarded.

How to vacuum seal steak? 

You may vacuum seal your steak at home to extend its shelf life. It involves placing the steak in a plastic zipper bag, eliminating the air, then nearly sealing the bag with a small amount of space remaining while lowering it into water.

After that, start pressing out the bubbles starting from the bag’s bottom and work your way up to the sealed end, closing the bag’s seal. 

A vacuum sealer pump can also be used to easily vacuum seal steak at home.

What are different ways to spot spoiled steak?

There are a few clear indicators that indicate if your steak has gone bad. To determine if steak has gone bad, look at its appearance, texture, and smell.

Appearance

If you see mold or other organic growth on your steak or if it is discolored (brown, gray, or green), it’s time to throw it out.

It’s worth noting that you should avoid smelling moldy steak since molds can produce mycotoxins, which can disturb your gut microflora and damage your immune system if they enter your body by inhalation.

Texture

If you touch the steak and it feels sticky, slimy, or gooey, it’s time to throw it out.

Smell

If you smell something sour or ammonia-like while sniffing your steak, it’s time to throw it out.

Lastly, I do not recommend tasting cooked steak with a foul odor, but if you are brave (and silly) enough, you will notice a significant change in the texture and mouthfeel of the spoiled steak. It will have an off-flavor.

Thus, if the microbes have somehow gotten into your steak and spoiled it, the best thing you can do is throw it out.

You can read how to make steak here.

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we answered the question “how long can steak stay in the fridge after thawing” with an in-depth analysis of the shelf life of thawed steak. Moreover, we discussed the different ways to spot spoiled steak.

Citations

https://ask.usda.gov/s/article/How-long-can-meat-and-poultry-remain-in-the-refrigerator-once-thawed#:~:text=While%20foods%20are%20in%20the,within%20three%20to%20five%20days.
https://www.stilltasty.com/questions/index/184
https://web.extension.illinois.edu/meatsafety/thawing.cfm

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