Steak is a popular dish across the world. May it be a nice dinner for your family or a fancy meal for a date night, steak is an excellent idea. It is natural to go overboard with the amount of best you cook; nobody wants to risk being short! Nobody has the heart to throw away some nice juicy meat. And now, you don’t have to either!
Can you freeze cooked steak?
Yes, you can freeze cooked steak. If you freeze it right, you can preserve its taste and texture. Steak meat stays good in the freezer for up to 3 months. Using frozen cooked steak anytime post this period isn’t a good idea.
Okay, cooked steak freezes well; that’s not all that is important while freezing it. The key to keeping your cooked steak fresh is by following the correct procedures for freezing, thawing, and reheating it. This may sound slightly intimidating now but really, it’s pretty simple. Continue reading the article to know-how!
How to Freeze Cooked Steak
It’s essential to know how to freeze cooked steak the right way. We know that it’s safe for the freezer but it all comes down to how you store it. Here’s a step by step guide that you can follow while freezing cooked steak:
Step 1: Allow your steak to Cook
The first step is to allow your meat to cool down after you it is finished being cooked. Please bring it down to room temperature before you start preparing it for the freezer. Freezing the steak while it is still warm is not recommended as it results in condensation in the container or bag. This accumulated moisture is harmful to the quality of the steak and may affect its taste or texture. Freezing it warm may also affect the quality of the surrounding food in the freezer.
An important thing to remember is that the steak should be brought down to room temperature should be cooled within two hours. Keeping it out any longer is not a good idea as it increases the chances of bacterial manifestation in your meat.
Step 2: Wrapping the steak
The next step is wrapping the cooked steak. You can use aluminum foil or plastic wrap to secure the steak. It is essential to wrap the steak tightly and Not leave any part of it exposed As it saves your meat from freezer burns.
If you are planning to store a large portion of steak, we recommend you cut it down to smaller pieces if you are planning to use it in future recipes. This way you do not have to thaw the entire portion of meat and only defrost the amount you need.
Step 3: Getting it ready for the freezer
Now, place the wrapped steak in airtight containers or freezer bags. Your cooked steak is ready for the freezer. We advise you to store the steak on the lowest shelf of your freezer. This way, The fluids that are made drip from this steak will not reach the surrounding food items and contaminate them. Please make sure that you have maintained enough space between the steaks to promote uniform air circulation between them.
You can place more than one steak in your airtight container or freezer bag. Just make sure that you haven’t stuffed them in. Before you pop them in the freezer please make sure that you’ve taken out all the air from the airtight containers. If you are using freezer bags, Please ensure that you have squeezed out as much air as possible. It is essential to keep your meat from being oxidized and suffering freezer burns as this greatly alters the texture and even taste of the meat.
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Step 4: Label and store
Before storing the containers or bags in the freezer, we recommend you label the meat And note down the date of freezing. This helps you keep track of how much longer your cooked steak will stay good in the freezer. Cooked steak can be frozen for up to 3 months without its taste or texture being deteriorated.
Tip: foods that freeze tend to lose a significant amount of moisture that ultimately affects their taste. One way you can keep your cooked steak from losing moisture is to store it with some of the juices you have cooked it with. This will keep your steak moist and also add some flavor.
How to Thaw Cooked Steak
You can eat your frozen cooked steak any time during 3 months of freezer storage. Getting your steak ready to eat involved thawing and reheating the frozen meat. Let’s look at some ways you can that frozen cooked steak:
In the refrigerator
This is the best way to thaw frozen cooked steak. This method allows your steak to retain its original taste and texture. Transfer the steak from the freezer to the refrigerator and leave it there overnight to let it thaw. If you’re thawing it during the day, please make sure you let it sit in the refrigerator for at least 5 hours before taking it out.
In a bowl of water
In a bind? Don’t worry. Another way you can thaw frozen cooked steak that helps you save time is by immersing it in a bowl of water.
Take the steak out from the freezer. Fill a bowl with room temperature water and place the steak in it. Keep changing the water every 10-15 minutes until it fully thaws.
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In the microwave
Microwaving your steak is another way you can thaw it. However, it is not recommended to employ this technique. Since your steak is already cooked, popping it in the microwave increases its risk of being overcooked and losing moisture. If you choose to your meat in a microwave, make sure you keep an extra set of eyes there.
How to Reheat Cooked Steak
Once you have your steak is done thawing, you can get it ready to eat by reheating it. Thawed cooked steak must be reheated properly to preserve the quality of your steak. It is essential to know what ways you can reheat cooked steak without compromising its taste, texture, or moisture content.
Here are ways you can reheat cooked steak:
In the Oven
Reheating cooked steak in the oven is recommended the most. Since the oven reheats your steak slowly, the result will be as juice and tender as possible!
Preheat the oven at 275 degrees F. Next, place the steak on a wire rack to promote even air circulation around the steak. Leave it in there for about 25-30 minutes. Use a thermometer to measure the steak’s internal temperature to see whether it’s done. The ideal internal temperature should be about 110 degrees F.
Now, prepare a skillet on the stovetop and add about a tablespoon of olive oil. Next, place the meat from the oven to the skillet and cook it on a high flame. Flip the steak every minute until you’re happy with the way it looks.
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On the Stove
If you are tight on time, don’t worry. You can take your steak directly to the stove to reheat it. This is a faster-reheating method, however, it requires your constant attention throughout.
Heat the most skillet at medium heat on the stovetop. Add about a tablespoon of olive oil and cook the steak in it. Everyone has different preferences regarding how they want their steak done. So, keep flipping every minute until you’re satisfied with the result. If you like a medium-rare, reheating generally just takes about 3 minutes.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How does freezing cooked steak affect its taste?
That’s the best part, you’ll hardly notice a difference in taste or texture in the first 3 months of storing it! Cooked steak freezes well. So, the deciding factor as to how well it’s going to do in the freezer depends on how well you’ve packed it.
Freezing isn’t the only process that could affect the taste of your steak. How you reheat it is just as important. Please avoid microwaving your cooked steak to have it ready to eat. This will reduce the level of moisture in the steak significantly. Instead, using a stove or an oven is a better way you can reheat steak without compromising its original moisture content.
How to tell if the frozen cooked steak has gone bad?
You can tell if you’re cooked steak has gone bad by checking its texture and the way it smells. Spoiled meat has a slippery, slimy texture and an unpleasant smell. If there is a sour, pungent smell coming from your steak, don’t even bother trying it; it’s a clear sign that it has gone bad.
Can you refreeze cooked steak?
Yes, you can refreeze cooked steak. Cooked steak is safe to refreeze as long as it hasn’t been fully thawed yet. Please make sure you haven’t kept it in the fridge for too long after thawing it the first time. This way, most of it is still frozen, and refreezing will not affect its quality in taste or texture.
However, if you’ve your cooked steak has thawed enough, it is not safe to pop it in the freezer again. Freezing thawed cooked steak is not a good idea as you will observe a considerable change in taste and texture when you heat it to eat again.
We hope this article helped you save all that extra steak from your big dinner. You can use this leftover steak as a whole main course or add it as an ingredient in other dishes. Its versatility is one of the main reasons why you should freeze it. You can have delicious meat to heat up and enjoy anytime you want for up to three months.
So, don’t worry about the taste or texture of your meat Getting altered in the freezer. Cooked steak freezes very well and retains its original quality upon heating. All you need to make sure is that you follow the freezing, thawing, and reheating procedures correctly and you are good to go!