When thawing frozen food, thawing in the refrigerator is the best method, because the refrigerator remains at a safe, constant temperature — at 40 °F or below. But it needs about a full day, some items even need 2 or 3 days to be thawed, so planning ahead is the key to this method. Food thawed in the refrigerator can be refrozen without cooking, although there may be some loss of quality.
Thawing in cold or ice water is a good method too. This method is faster than refrigerator thawing but requires more attention. The food must be in a leak-proof package or plastic bag. If the bag leaks, bacteria from the air or surrounding environment could be introduced into the food. Also, the meat tissue may absorb water, resulting in a watery product. If the food can be thawed in 1°C ice water and the water is changed 3-4 times during the process, it can best ensure the balance of internal and external temperature. If thawed completely, the food must be cooked immediately.