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06/07/2012 09:28 am ET Updated Aug 31, 2012

Defrosting Meat: How To Safely Thaw Chicken, Meat And Fish

Freezing food is pretty easy to do. You realize you're not going to eat something within the next couple of days, so rather than letting it spoil in the fridge, you just toss it in the freezer. It's a safe spot for foods to be. But bringing food back from that frozen state (and knowing what to do with it) is another issue all together.

There are three safe methods approved by the USDA for defrosting meat, poultry or seafood -- and leaving it out on the counter is not one of them. If this is how you deal with thawing, we advise you click through the slideshow to avoid accidentally giving yourself food poisoning. (Check out the other common food handling mistakes you should avoid.)

PHOTO GALLERIES
How To Thaw Food

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