Robert Irvine Wants You To Know This Before Thawing Meat With Hot Water

Robert Irvine — celebrity chef and Food Network host — is perhaps best known for his series "Restaurant: Impossible," on which he comes to the aid of struggling restaurants across the United States, attempting to right the ship with a $10,000, two-day makeover. The show is now in its 19th season, having premiered on May 21 with an episode set in Louisville, Tennessee's The Anchor (via Food Network Gossip). When he's not busy saving failing restaurants, Irvine maintains active Instagram and Twitter accounts, where he's been known to respond directly to fan inquiries.

Recently, the chef did just that when a viewer tweeted him asking advice on how to thaw meat. If you've ever undertaken this endeavor, you know that it's not always self-explanatory. For instance, just leaving frozen meat out on the counter until it defrosts might seem to be a good idea, but in reality it's an invitation for dangerous bacteria to move in and have a party (via Kitchn). And how about thawing frozen meat in hot water? Irvine had some valuable insights on that point.

Thawing meat in hot water is a no-no, according to Irvine

Celebrity chef Robert Irvine knows a thing or two about food, including meat. Recently he answered a question via Twitter from @TommyBrownIII1, asking about proper procedure for thawing frozen meat.

"During my time in the meat dept we used cold water thawing. @RobertIrvine is either warm or cold alright to use?" the user asked. Irvine responded that warm or cold are A-OK, but that frozen meat should never be defrosted in hot water.

"Yes Tommy, you can use either as long as it's constantly running. Problem using hot is it starts to cook the meat and you have to be very careful," the chef responded.

Irvine was on the money with his response. According to the American Meat Science Association, frozen meat will start to cook when placed in hot water, as parts of it go above 40 degrees Fahrenheit — which is also the temperature at which bacteria can start to grow. Like Irvine, the association recommends thawing frozen meat in cold water (which, contrary to what Irvine states, does not need to be constantly running — a plain old bowl of cold water, swapped out a couple times, works just fine). So there you have it: To keep your stomach bacteria happy, resist the urge to thaw frozen meat in hot water.