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6 Tips For Thawing Pork Shoulder

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If you’re a grill master, you may already know about how to quickly dethaw pork when you want to. However, if you are just starting out grilling, you may need some information about pork shoulder and the best ways to thaw it out.

Quickest Way to Thaw Pork Shoulder

Some chefs will actually place the pork under running water at tepid temperatures, leaving room around the drain to the sink to allow the flowing water to go down.

This is one good way to do it however the preferred way to do it is to place the entire package of pork in a large container such as a bowl or bucket full of cold water.

If you thaw the pork in this way, you will need to keep the pork in the water for about 30 minutes per pound of meat in order for the pork to fully thaw.

Why you Would Want to Quickly Dethaw a Pork Shoulder

There are a variety of reasons why you may desire to thaw pork shoulder out quickly. You may have an unexpected change in your schedule and you need to eat soon.

Guests may arrive before they were supposed to, or any number of factors may require you to thaw pork quickly for consumption.

Should you Quickly Dethaw a Pork Shoulder

In most cases, it’s probably better if you don’t thaw out pork rapidly because of the airborne bacteria that can get into the pork.

However, thawing pork can be done quickly and safely if you are going to immediately use the pork and cook it.

And in no case, should you ever let pork thaw out on a counter or kitchen table at room temperature.

This only invites bacteria to settle into the pork, which can cause sickness and potentially even death.

Pork is one of those meats that can’t be exposed to bacteria, as it quickly develops the potential for the growth of these germs to get to the point of causing sickness or worse.

How to Defrost Pork Shoulder Overnight

There is no emergency and you are merely planning a meal or cookout. The best way that is also the safest is to thaw the pork shoulder out in the refrigerator overnight.

This is safer than thawing it out under running or cold water, as it will virtually assure that no bacteria will grow in the pork as you thaw it out.

In order to thaw out pork shoulder in the refrigerator overnight, you should place the pork package in its entirety unopened on a baking dish or large pan and line it with paper towels to absorb any liquids that may come from it. 

You will want to place the pork in the refrigerator well in advance of cooking, remembering that you will need at least 24 hours before for every 5 lb of meat.

You should want to put the pork on the bottom level of the refrigerator, in case of liquid spills from the pork and overflows into the pan or dish you have placed it in.

Can you Cook Pork Shoulder from Frozen?

You could very well cook pork in a frozen state. However, it’s going to take much longer than whatever recipe you are using would call for. There is also the danger that the pork will not cook completely on the inside and remain pink, which is also dangerous. 

Final Thoughts

You may be starving and in a hurry to eat or guests may be coming soon and you just need to thaw that pork out.

Using running water or a bowl or other container of cold water to just thaw the pork out quickly, this can be done safely if you cook the pork as soon as you possibly can and not expose it to the air.

The idea is to reduce the danger of serving up some potentially raw or undercooked bacteria-ridden pork.

If there is a question if pork has been exposed to bacteria or there is any delay after the pork has been thawed, it is better to err on the side of caution and dispose of the pork without cooking and serving it for the sake of safety.

A quick trip to the store is better than people becoming sick or dying, so make sure your pork is safe before serving it.