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The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s guidelines regarding thawing beef entail three methods: A natural cool-down on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator, a quick-thaw in the microwave or defrosting with the assistance of cold water. Of these three procedures, the cold-water method is best – microwaves heat food unevenly, and the steak must be cooked immediately afterward; the refrigerator method, although ideal, takes approximately 3 to 4 hours per pound, minimum; the cold-water method, however, thaws steaks safely in as little as 15 minutes per pound in a uniform manner.

Place each steak in a sealable plastic storage bag. Remove as much air as possible from the bag.

Fill a container large enough to hold the steaks with cold water and submerge them.

Refresh the water every 30 minutes until thawed.

About the Author

A.J. Andrews

A.J. Andrews' work has appeared in Food and Wine, Fricote and "BBC Good Food." He lives in Europe where he bakes with wild yeast, milks goats for cheese and prepares for the Court of Master Sommeliers level II exam. Andrews received formal training at Le Cordon Bleu.