Is It Safe to Refreeze Raw Meat?

Have you been told never to refreeze raw meat after it has been defrosted once?? I have, and I generally live by that principle. But did you ever notice that sometimes in the grocery store, the meat in the refrigerator case is obviously half-frozen??

I have always wondered how they got away with that, but evidently, it’s okay to refreeze raw meat IF it has been defrosted IN THE FRIDGE — NOT on the counter, and not even in cold water.

I found this infographic from the USDA interesting.

Food Myths

(click to view full size)

You know never to leave your meat on the counter to thaw, right?? It actually defrosts just as fast if you put it in a pan of cold water, and it is safer to thaw it that way too.

The other one that I was glad to see was the lettuce one. Not that I advocate buying bagged lettuce. I would prefer to get it from the garden or from a local farm so I know it’s fresh. But when I’m in a pinch, I admit that I will still pick up one of those bags from time to time.

I never wash it, and according to this, that is A-OK.

However, I rarely use a meat thermometer. So sue me.

As for the microwave, I think cooking anything in the microwave is disgusting. I use it to heat things up from time to time, but never to cook food from raw. Bleh.

Do any of these food myths surprise you?

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8 Responses

  1. YEAH!!! I am soooo glad you posted this!! I have always abided by the don’t “refreeze” meat thing. And I don’t thaw it on the counter, I used to though. But I know better now!! I also don’t wash bagged lettuce and don’t use a meat thermometer. This is useful because there’s been times when I cooked something only to refreeze it and could’ve just popped it back in the freezer.

  2. Great post.. yes I refreeze cold thawed meats… but OY! my 82 year old mother to this day counter defrosts. I have sworn off her cooking!

  3. First time I’ve read that you can actually re-freeze raw meat. Good to know!

    Describing cooking food from raw in the microwave as ‘disgusting’ sounds a little harsh or judgemental, though…(at least to the ears of a busy mom who works outside the home).

    1. I’m not sure why my opinion about the microwave would sound judgmental. I also think Burger King and oysters and sweet tea are disgusting. It doesn’t mean I pass judgement on anyone who chooses to partake.

      All moms are busy. Let’s not go down that road…

  4. my refrigerator freezer started acting up…freezing everything on the refrig side as well…so we decided to unplug it ….and sure as can be…we forgot to plug it back in…. until 2 days later! I was concerned because of the amount of raw meat products we had stored in the freezer side….they had started to defrost but not completely….I was ready to toss it all when I decided to check once and for all about the defrosted/refrozen meat myth…thank you for saving my raw meat products…..as for the chicken..it was totally defrosted…so without risk…we’re having a rather large chicken dinner tonight.

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