How long can I leave an uncooked steak out?

  • This is similar to This Question, but hopefully different enough.

    I have 3 porterhouse steaks sitting in my refrigerator that I need to cook up tonight. I've been told leaving them out for an hour and salting them a half hour before cooking is the way to do it. However scheduling conflicts dictate that I either leave my steaks sitting out for an hour and a half to two hours, or eat at 9 o'clock at night.

    Will the steaks be ok being left out that long? or will I need to just suck it up and eat a late dinner?

    Note: my apartment is usually kept at around 70-75 degrees.

    Another option would be to use the Cooks Illustrated method -- put the steaks in the oven, and let them warm up to 90 degrees. Then sear the outside. This requires only 15 minutes out of the refrigerator.

  • Even if you just pull them out for about 30 minutes once you get home that will be better than not letting sit out at all. The main benefit is that it will cook easier and you'll have a natural gradation from brown to pink on the inside rather than the gray color that often occurs. I myself don't typically pull meat out an hour before cooking it.


    As long as they haven't previously been sitting out for an extended period of time, most likely you'll be ok for 1 1/2 hours since the steaks will be cold when set out. Make sure that they remain tightly wrapped/covered to minimize exposure to air.

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Content dated before 6/26/2020 9:53 AM