How long can defrosted ground beef stay in the fridge?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “how long can defrosted ground beef stay in the fridge” with an in-depth analysis of the time for which defrosted ground beef stays good in the fridge. Moreover, we are going to discuss the proper way to freeze and thaw ground beef.

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

How long can defrosted ground beef stay in the fridge?

The ground beef that has been defrosted in the fridge can stay good for about 1-2 days before cooking it.

On the other hand, if you have defrosted ground beef in a bowl of cold water or the microwave then it is recommended to cook the ground beef immediately.

Moreover, when it comes to cooked ground beef it can stay good for about 3-4 days when thawed in the fridge. On the other hand, it is recommended to reheat and eat the cooked ground beef immediately that has been thawed in a bowl of cold water or microwave.

The proper way to store ground beef in the freezer

You can easily store the ground beef in a plastic freezer bag or heavy-duty freezer container in the freezer. 

Ground beef belongs to the meat group that is a highly perishable commodity therefore care should be taken while handling, storing, and cooking ground beef. 

Check How long can defrosted meat stay in the fridge.

Moreover, to preserve the quality of the ground beef for quite a long time you can opt for vacuum sealing it which is quite effective in prolonging its shelf life.

Vacuum sealing involves the process of putting the ground beef in a plastic zipper bag, removing air from it, and almost sealing the bag with a little space left while lowering it into water. Afterward, press out the bubbles from the bag starting from the bottom of the bag and once you reach the sealed end, you should press the seal closed. 

The reason behind doing vacuum sealing is to ensure that there is minimum air present in the plastic zipper bag with the ground beef. As air has moisture and oxygen in it that favors bacterial growth, so by removing air, ground beef can retain its freshness for a long time.

It is a good practice to divide the ground beef into portions or serving sizes that you generally need. By doing so you will be able to just thaw the quantity of ground beef that you need while the rest of the ground beef can stay in the freezer untouched.

Thus keeping the ground beef in the freezer will increase its shelf life considerably owing to the cool temperature of the freezer that halts the bacterial growth on the ground beef.

Different ways to thaw ground beef

When it comes to thawing ground beef, there are a couple of ways to do so and you can choose any of them depending upon your choice.

In the fridge

The recommended way to thaw the frozen ground beef is to leave it in the refrigerator overnight and let it thaw there. The ground beef thawed this way can be kept in the fridge for 1-2 days before cooking and eating it.

In a bowl of cold water

You can thaw the frozen ground beef in a bowl of cold water but you should cook it immediately after thawing. 

In microwave

Moreover, if you are thawing the ground beef in the oven or microwave it is recommended to cook it immediately. 

The reason behind cooking the ground beef immediately after thawing it in a cold water bowl or microwave is that when you warm the ground beef using these methods, the temperature at the surface of the ground beef gets higher than that of 40 degrees Fahrenheit before the core temperature can become 40 degrees Fahrenheit and it can thaw completely and that’s when the bacteria can start to grow on the surface rapidly.

Therefore it is advised to cook such thawed ground beef immediately until its internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Because it is only by cooking the ground beef properly that we can get rid of the bacteria completely.

It is worth mentioning that once you have thawed the frozen ground beef, you should not refreeze it.

Other FAQs about Beef which you may be interested in.

How to boil beef ribs?

How to boil beef liver?

How long can cooked ground beef sit out?

Can I refrigerate the reheated ground beef?

So once you have reheated the ground beef, you should never refrigerate it. As when you reheat the ground beef, its temperature rises more than 40 degrees Fahrenheit and we know that bacteria grows at a faster rate between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit. So the bacteria will find their way to your ground beef and you should never refrigerate the reheated ground beef.

You can read how to make hamburgers here.

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we answered the question “how long can defrosted ground beef stay in the fridge” with an in-depth analysis of the time for which defrosted ground beef stays good in the fridge. Moreover, we discussed the proper way to freeze and thaw ground beef.

Citations

https://www.stilltasty.com/questions/index/151/page:1#:~:text=Ground%20beef%20that’s%20been%20defrosted,same%20timeframe%2C%20says%20the%20USDA.
https://ask.usda.gov/s/article/How-long-can-meat-and-poultry-remain-in-the-refrigerator-once-thawed
https://web.extension.illinois.edu/meatsafety/thawing.cfm

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.