Ground beef is a protein packed food found in many household fridges and freezers. It is common to prepare a meal in bulk, and save the leftovers to reheat ground beef in the microwave as a hot and delicious meal prep.
Don’t let a hectic week filled with work, school and daily chores get in the way of a tasty and nutritious meal. Use a microwave to reheat leftover ground beef as a hearty meal when you need a quick fix.
How do you reheat ground beef in a microwave? To reheat ground beef in the microwave, place the cooked meat on a microwave safe plate with a loose lid. Nuke on medium heat for a minute, stir and then continue microwaving on high for another minute or until the internal temperature reaches 74°C or 165°F.
Ground beef is what many meat eaters have stockpiled in their freezer for a quick and easy meal. After defrosting ground beef and cooking a delicious meal, any leftovers should be properly stored so you can reheat ground beef in microwave to prevent the risk of any growth of bacteria.
Ground beef is a versatile ingredient that is useful in many recipes, stores well and can be reheated in the microwave quickly and easily. Reheating in a microwave saves money, time, and delicious leftover, but doing it right is essential to avoid any health hazards or food poisoning.
This article covers everything you need to know about using a microwave to reheat ground beef. Frequently asked questions are answered below along with microwave tips for the best way to reheat ground beef.
Can you reheat ground beef in a microwave?
Yes, you can reheat ground beef in the microwave safely and quickly.
Reheating ground beef in a microwave on a microwave-safe dish, with a splash of water and cover with a lid. Reheat on medium heat for 2 to minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 74°C or 165°F.
Sprinkle water, olive oil or sauce over the ground beef to reheat the ground beef and give it a bit of moisture so it doesn’t dry out.
A lif over the top really helps to lock in the steam and warm food evenly. Reheat by using a microwave safe lid or microwave cover to distribute heat more effectively.
Alternatively use a wet paper towel or microwaveable plastic wrap on top of it to cover the ground beef. This will trap the steam and prevent it from drying out.
Check-in between and stir the ground beef often for thorough and even reheating. Reheat on medium heat in a microwave to prevent overcooking.
Is it safe to reheat ground beef in the microwave?
Yes, it is safe to reheat ground beef in the microwave when done the right way. To safely reheat ground beef, it must be stored properly and warmed to an internal temperature of 74°C or 165°F.
Fully cooked beef should be stored in a fridge or freezer within an hour or two of cooking. The USDA recommended the cooked beef be covered and eaten within 3 to 4 days.
Reheated ground beef in the microwave is safe to eat when the internal temperature is heated to 74°C or 165°F, which need to be checked with a meat thermometer.
When handled and stored properly, cooked ground beef can be reheated without any dangerous outcomes for consumption. For best quality, taste, and texture, only reheat the amount going to be consumed in a single sitting.
How much time do you reheat ground beef in the microwave?
When reheating ground beef in the microwave, nuke for about 2 to 3 minutes until the meat is heated all the way through. Check periodically and stir for even distribution of heat to prevent hotspots.
Place the ground beef in a microwave-safe dish without overcrowding the plate or piling up in the center. Add a sprinkle of water and cover with a microwave-safe lid over it.
If you don’t a microwaveable lid on hand, then cover with a wet paper towel instead. Reheat the ground beef on medium heat for a minute, check and stir, then continue microwaving for another minute until fully reheated.
How do you know when ground beef is reheated in the microwave?
To know if the ground heat is reheated in the microwave, check the internal temperature using a meat thermometer. The temperature must register 74°C or 165°F to be safely reheated.
A properly calibrated meat thermometer is the best way to know if the ground beef is reheated all the way through.
However, you can tell when the ground beef is reheated by steam rising from the surface, the surface temperature is too hot to hold and by a noticeable smell of cooked beef aroma.
Reheating ground beef is simple in a microwave. When you place the beef on a microwave-safe dish, add a little splash of water over it, cover it to keep the moisture locked inside and nuke for 2 to 3 minutes with occasional stirring.
USDA suggests reheating on medium heat to prevent the beef from turning rubbery, chewy or dried out.
How to Store Cooked Ground Beef
Ground beef can be safely stored in the fridge for about 3 to 4 days after cooking. Most importantly, leftover ground meat must be refrigerated or frozen within an hour or two of being cooked.
To enhance its shelf life, it is suggested to refrigerate the cooked ground beef in shallow airtight containers. The other methods are by wrapping tightly in plastic wrap or using aluminum foil.
Perishable food like ground beef must not be left within the temperature danger zone of 40°F to 140°F for longer than two hours if you intend on keeping the leftovers. For safe food handling procedures, it is essential to store cooked ground beef in the fridge within two hours post-cooking.
Appropriately cooked and stored ground beef should easily last for three to four days in the fridge when stored in a meal prep container. Also, safely freeze the cooked ground beef by placing it in airtight containers or ziploc bags for up to 3 months.
Any signs of slime or sour smell indicate that the ground beef has gone bad. Discard it right away and do not try to reheat it.
Tips to reheat ground beef in the microwave
Ground beef can be reheated in the microwave safely, quickly, and easily when done right. Start with proper food handling and storage safety precautions, and if the meat is still fresh than proceed with microwave reheating.
Follow the below tips for safe reheating:
- Place the ground beef in a microwave-safe dish.
- Add a splash of liquid to avoid drying out the beef.
- Moisture can also be added by placing a cup of water next to the food while microwaving.
- Arrange the beef in a single layer without over-piling or crowding the plate.
- Cover the ground beef with a microwave-safe lid, paper towel or cling wrap to retain moisture.
- Set the microwave to medium heat
- Nuke for 1 minute increments.
- Check the food and stir the ground beef after each duration. This will avoid burning by reheating the beef evenly.
- Warm to an internal temperature of 74°C or 165°F
Best way to reheat ground beef in the microwave
After cooking and storing the ground beef properly, then you may proceed with safely reheating it in the microwave. It can be done safely, quickly and easily by following a few simple steps.
The best way to reheat ground beef in a microwave is by following these steps:
- Use a microwave-safe dish and place the ground beef on it.
- Add a tablespoon of water, oil or a favorite sauce for extra moisture.
- Cover it with a lid to retain moisture within.
- Reheat the ground beef for a minute on a medium heat setting.
- Check the doneness and mix the beef for even reheating.
- Increase the temperature to high and nuke for a minute.
- If necessary, stir and continue reheating for 30 second increments.
- Reheating is done when the internal temperature is 74°C or 165°F.
Reheating Ground Beef in Microwave: Final Thoughts
There is no doubt that microwaves can safely reheat ground beef. But, a few precautions must be taken to ensure proper food handling procedures are being followed.
Most importantly, leftover ground beef must be stored properly in an airtight container inside the fridge or freezer. Not only are there negative effects of atmosphere and air contact, but perishable food must not remain in the temperature danger zone for longer than two hours after being cooked.
Remove the cooked ground beef from cold storage and allow it to come to room temperature for 10 to 30 minutes before reheating in the microwave. The temperature transition from cold to hot will be slightly reduced, which makes it easier to warm the meat without overheating.
It is recommended to use a microwave safe container with a lid when reheating in the microwave. Glass and ceramic dishes are generally considered as safer to microwave than plastic, but stick with dish ware you are most comfortable with using in your appliance.
Nuke for a minute on medium heat, stir and continue reheating until the ground beef reaches an internal temperature of 74°C or 165°F. The cooked meat is a perishable food, therefore it is important to fully reheat before it is considered safe to eat.
When you reheat ground beef in microwave, ensure even reheating, handling, and storing of beef. This will avoid risks to your health without compromising on the taste, texture, and quality of the beef.
Storage and reheating are part of safe food handling procedures. Follow these microwave tips when reheating ground beef so that the leftovers turn out delicious every time.