How to Defrost Filet Mignon

Filet mignon is a pricey cut of beef, so don't throw your money away with improper thawing. Cut from the mild-tasting tenderloin, filet mignon is exceptionally tender despite being rather lean. There are three ways to defrost filet mignon, depending on your preference and time constraints. Refrigerator defrosting takes the longest, but the slow, gentle thawing preserves the meat's silky texture. Microwave defrosting requires only a few minutes, but it can sometimes cause meat to become tough and stringy. Cold water defrosting is less harsh than the microwave but works quickly thanks to filet mignon's small size.

A grilled filet mignon on with spices. Credit: VankaD/iStock/Getty Images

Refrigerator Method

Step 1

Place the filet mignon in its original packaging on a plate in a single layer.

Step 2

Store the filet mignon in the refrigerator.

Step 3

Allow the filet mignon to defrost until is it soft and pliable, about 12 hours. Cook the filet mignon within three to five days.

Cold Water Method

Step 1

Place the filet mignon in a large bowl. If the meat's original packaging isn't waterproof, seal it in a zip-top plastic bag before thawing.

Step 2

Fill the bowl with cold tap water. If necessary, place a glass or bowl on top of the meat to weigh it down so it remains submerged.

Step 3

Change the water every 30 minutes until the meat is thawed completely, about 1 hour. Always cook meat thawed in cold water right away.

Microwave Method

Step 1

Remove the filet mignon from its original packaging and transfer it to a microwave-safe dish.

Step 2

Place the filet mignon in the microwave.

Step 3

Microwave the meat on the "defrost" setting until it is soft and thawed, about 3 to 4 minutes. Check the meat's progress regularly to prevent overcooking. Always cook meat thawed in the microwave immediately.

Things You'll Need

  • Plate

  • Large bowl

  • Zip-top plastic bag

  • Glass or bowl heavy enough to use as weight

  • Microwave-safe dish

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