How to Defrost Chicken Fast for a Quick Dinner (2020)

What's better than a nice chicken dinner? It's easy to prepare if you've got the right equipment, and delicious too. The only problem is when you've stored your chicken in the freezer, and need it defrosted ASAP. You might think it's impossible to do, and that you've got to put it in the fridge overnight to let it defrost, but that's not entirely true! In fact, that's only one method of defrosting chicken - and not the fast one.

So we've put together a handy guide for how to defrost chicken fast, for a quick and easy dinner. We're all busy sometimes and don't have a lot of time to prepare meals, but that doesn't mean you can't still eat well! All you need are a few tips and tricks to get you started, and voila! You're golden.

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Health first!

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If it’s almost time for dinner and your chicken is still in the freezer, all is not lost! Just remember that food safety comes first—you don’t want to speed things up too much and risk improperly cooking the chicken. Now, on to the different methods of thawing chicken.

Use cold water (2 hours).

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First, you’ll want to place the chicken in a leakproof plastic bag. That way, the water won’t damage the meat tissue! 

Then, grab a large bowl.

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Fill it up with water and submerge the bagged chicken. Make sure you change out the water every 30 minutes, and in a couple of hours, your chicken will be ready.

While it’s in the sink, you can also use a thaw claw.

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 If you’re really in a hurry, this handy gadget will make your meat thaw out even faster than just water alone! There’s no assembly required, and it’s super easy to use, too.

Need an even faster method?

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You could always use hot water instead. This method should take 30 minutes or less!

Grab that large bowl.

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Run hot tap water into it. Put your bagged chicken into the bowl, stirring the water every once in a while, and it should be thawed in no time!

You’ll want to keep track of things with a meat thermometer.

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While your chicken is submerged, you’ll want to monitor its temperature with a meat thermometer like this one, to make sure that it’s defrosting the way you want it to, and doesn’t get too hot!

There’s always the microwave.

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This is easily the fastest method, of course, so it’s also the one you should use if you’ve really got no other option. Your chicken will need to be cooked right away after being in the microwave, but it’ll work!

You could also use a defrosting tray.

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This defrosting tray is designed to naturally thaw out your meat way faster than normal! There’s no microwave involved, yet the tray generates heat and thaws out the chicken.

No time at all? Don’t thaw the chicken.

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Yep, you read that right. If you’ve really got no time to spare, your chicken doesn’t have to be thawed first. It’ll just take about 50% more time to cook than it would if it was thawed.