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Apr 21, 2009 07:28 AM

chicken on counter overnight?

hey guys - I'm a moron. I took two boneless chicken thighs out of the freezer last night, tossed them on the counter and forgot about them until this morning.

they would have been out for 8 hours, defrosting time included.. Do you think they'd be okay to eat?

I can't even give them a smell test because I rubbed them down with Jerk seasoning before I froze them,

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    1. I agree - just toss them. Chicken is pretty cheap in general and though highly flavorful, thighs are pretty low in the $$$ department. Stop by the store on your way home and grab more.

      1. If I telll you what I would do and you get sick, then that wouldn't be a good thing, would it? So I will say only that disease-causing things have to be present (#1) and if they are then would have to not be killed in cooking which I assume would be done to a high enough degree of heat since few of us eat rare chicken. But I don't know your medical history so I won't tell you what I'd do :(

        3 Replies
        1. re: c oliver

          I think you're getting into too many variables here for something as cheap and as replaceable as a couple of chicken thighs. We're not talking about a Thanksgiving turkey or a Christmas Roast Beast... it's just not worth the risk for the $1.25 (or less) that the things cost.

          1. re: SQHD

            In order to decide whether the cost is worth the risk, you have to quantify the risk. The chicken started out frozen, so it took quite a while to get above 40F. It was presumably clean to start with. And it's going to be fully cooked, which will kill any bacteria present. So the risk posed by this chicken is pretty much nonexistent.

            Of course there are those who believe that even a tiny risk of food poisoning justifies wasting food. And they'll tell you about it at great length as they eat their salad (which poses a far greater threat than the chicken that sat out overnight).

            1. re: alanbarnes

              cooking the chicken through should kill whatever might be lurking. i think people are overly nervous about this sort of thing. truly.

          1. If it started frozen, and was in a sealed container, I'd still eat it. if it was left out on a plate, or was already kinda thawed, I'd toss.

            2 Replies
            1. re: turkishlamb

              Funny... when I first started cooking and asked my mom how long it takes to defrost a chicken she said "I just leave it out overnight and then put it in the fridge in the morning". Though I don't use this technique myself, I've never gotten sick from her food. Oh, and she's a doctor. However, note that she does this for a whole chicken that starts off frozen- might be different for the thighs... and with chicken I think the general rule is when in doubt, toss it.

              1. re: danielle

                I do this all the time. Have NEVER had a problem. In the morning, I put it in the fridge. The chicken is still cold, but thawed and ready to cook.