How to Thaw Burgers/Beef Patties Quickly

How to Thaw Beef Patties/Burgers - 3 Best Methods to Use
Guide to Thawing Beef Patties/Burgers

If you live in the Western world, burgers are a fan favorite for many people. Burger patties come frozen, as this is the best way to preserve the meat and ensure its flavor remains intact.

If you’re in the mood for a burger meal, then you will need to defrost beef patties before you can get started.

But, what’s the best way to go about thawing burger patties?

Continue reading as we explore this below.

Things to Know Before Thawing Frozen Burgers

Never Thaw at Room Temperature –While it might be tempting to let the beef patties sit out and thaw at room temperature, that is actually not recommended.

As the patties thaw at room temperature, there is a high chance that it could enter what is known as the “Danger Zone”. The Danger zone is the temperature between 40 and 140 °F —where harmful bacteria multiplies rapidly.

This is why the methods we highlight below are recommended, as it keeps the burgers at a safe temperature as they thaw.

Never Thaw in Hot Water – Burger patties should not be thawed in hot water as this can cause the burger to break apart and leave you with minced beef instead. Hot water also raises the temperature of the meat, which increases the chance of it reaching the “Danger Zone”.

Burger Patties Can Be Cooked Without Thawing – You do not have to defrost beef patties before cooking them, as they can be cooked on the grill, in a skillet or in the oven from frozen. However, thawing the patties allows you to add seasoning and any other extras that might enhance the taste.

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How to Thaw Frozen Burger Patties: The 3 Best Methods to Use

The three most effective methods for thawing burgers are:

  • In the refrigerator preferably overnight
  • In cold water
  • Microwave

Thawing in the refrigerator is the longest of these methods, while the microwave is the quickest. Apart from the time, there are also other pros and cons for each method.

Let us take a more detailed look each of the methods below.

How to Thaw Burgers in the Refrigerator?

Letting beef patties thaw overnight in the refrigerator is one of the easiest defrosting methods, but it is also the most time consuming.

When using this method, it’s best to leave the burgers in the original package.


  1. Remove the burgers from the freezer and place them in a plate or in a container. If the package is torn or open, place the burgers in a resalable bag
  2. Place the plate or container on the bottom shelf in the refrigerator. This is for food safety reasons, as it reduces the chance of meat juices leaking on other foods.
  3. It’s best to leave them overnight, but at least five hours should be good if you’re pressed for time.
  4. Defrosted burger patties should not be kept in the refrigerator for more than two days.

How to Thaw Burger Patties in Cold-Water?

Cold water is another great method to use to defrost frozen burger patties. It is pretty quick and can have the burgers thawed and ready for use in 30 minutes or less.


  1. Remove the frozen patties from the freezer and transfer them into airtight plastic bags or Ziploc bags.
  2. Fill your sink or a large container with room temperature to cold water.
  3. Place the patties in the water and allow them to defrost.
  4. The water should be changed water every 10-15 minutes as this can help speed up the thawing process. This should be done until the burgers are fully defrosted (Usually 20-30 minutes).

How to Thaw Burgers in the Microwave?

The microwave will be the quickest way to thaw your frozen beef patties.

You should be cautious when using the microwave. If the wrong power setting is used or the burgers are left in too long, there is the possibility that you could end up cooking them.


  1. Separate the patties from each other and spread them on a microwave-safe plate. Ensure that there is space between each burger.
  2. Use the defrost option on the microwave and let it run for at least five minutes before checking the burgers. If they are still frozen, allow it to run for another two minutes for them to fully thaw
  3. If your microwave does not have the defrost option, then run a regular cook cycle in 1 minute intervals until the meat is soft to the touch.
  4. Once defrosted, the burgers should be cooked immediately.

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Wrapping it up

When it comes to thawing burgers/beef patties, it is best to let it defrost overnight in the refrigerator. If you are pressed for time, quicker options include a cold-water bath or the microwave.

For best results, use thawed patties as soon as possible and avoid refreezing as this can lead to a buildup of harmful bacteria.

Let me know in the comments which method you plan on using or used in the past?

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