3 ways to defrost scallops

3 ways to defrost scallops
3 ways to defrost scallops

Frozen scallops should be thawed properly to prevent their natural delicate texture from becoming rubbery and tender. The best way is to let them thaw in the refrigerator. If you don't have much time, you can run them under cold running water or put them in the microwave to speed up the thawing process.


Method 1 of 3: Defrost the scallops in the refrigerator

Defrost Scallops Step 1

Step 1. Let the scallops thaw in the refrigerator

This way you will have the best possible result. This method takes time, but you are guaranteed to have the best texture and taste. Since they will gradually thaw, the chances of them getting damaged or contaminated during the thawing process are very low.

Since they will need to be refrigerated for 24 hours, be sure to prepare ahead to make sure you have time to let them thaw completely before cooking

Defrost Scallops Step 2

Step 2. Set the refrigerator to a temperature of 3 ° C

The temperature of the refrigerator is a key component in the thawing process of scallops. For best results, the temperature should be around 3 ° C, so adjust your refrigerator accordingly.


the majority of standard type refrigerators are set at a temperature of 2 ° C. Make sure that there are no other foods in the refrigerator that could spoil at a temperature of 3 ° C. If necessary, transfer them to another suitable storage space while the scallops are being thawed.

Defrost Scallops Step 3

Step 3. Remove the scallops from their packaging

Then put them in a large bowl. The container to be used must be able to easily contain all the scallops. There must also be enough space for the water that will form when the ice covering them melts. Take them out of the packaging and place them in the bowl so that it is ¾ full.

If there are a lot of them, you can divide them among two bowls

Step 4. Make sure to cover the bowl with stretch wrap

Since they will thaw very slowly, they may become contaminated and deteriorate. Wrap the bowl with cling film to prevent them from coming into contact with other food particles in the refrigerator.

If the bowl has a cover, you can use it to protect them

Step 5. Place the bowl in a lower lower shelf of the refrigerator

After covering it with plastic wrap, make room on a shelf at the bottom of the refrigerator to prevent them from coming into contact with other foods.

Do not place the bowl in a drawer unless the internal temperature can be set to 3 ° C

Step 6. Let them thaw for a whole day in the refrigerator

Leave them like that before checking them. After 24 hours, take them out of the refrigerator and check if they are thawed by touching them in the center. They should be cold, but not frozen at all.

  • Keep in mind that if you cook them while they are not yet completely thawed, they may have a chewy and tender texture.
  • If after 24 hours they are still not completely thawed, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and put them back in the refrigerator for another 6 hours.

Method 2 of 3: Defrost the scallops in cold water

Defrost Scallops Step 7

Step 1. Use cold water to quickly thaw them

In case you don't have time to let them thaw gradually in the refrigerator, you can thaw them with cold water to speed up the defrosting process. Also, be aware that there is no risk that they will cook if you use cold water.

Scallops will thaw faster, but may be a bit softer when cooked

Step 2. Place them in a resealable plastic bag

It is necessary that they do not come into direct contact with water to avoid bacterial contamination. Remove them from their packaging, place them in a zippered bag that you will close.

Make sure the bag is properly closed so that water does not get inside


try to get as much air out of the bag as possible so that it does not float on the surface of the water.

Step 3. Place the bag with the scallops in a bowl

Use a large bowl that can easily hold not only the bag, but also plenty of water. You must make sure that the bowl is perfectly clean before putting the bag with the scallops in it to avoid any risk of contamination.

Defrost Scallops Step 10

Step 4. Put the bowl in the sink and fill it with cold tap water

Be sure to move the bag around a bit to keep it from sticking to the sides of the bowl as it fills. The water must be at a temperature of 10 ° C to thaw them without risking cooking or altering their consistency. Fill the bowl with enough water to cover the bag.

Leave the bowl in the sink to avoid wetting surrounding surfaces if the water overflows

Step 5. Change the water every 10 minutes 2 times

When the bowl is full, turn off the cold water tap and let them thaw undisturbed. After 10 minutes, empty the water bowl and fill it exactly as you did before. Leave for another 10 minutes, then drain the water and check their texture. Check that they have thawed by touching them. They should be cold, but soft, and there should be no frozen parts.

  • In total, it will take about 30 minutes for the scallops to thaw. If they are very big, it may take longer.
  • Be sure to close the bag securely after checking them.
  • Do not refreeze them after thawing them.

Method 3 of 3: Defrost the scallops in the microwave

Defrost Scallops Step 12

Step 1. Use the microwave to thaw them if you're in a hurry

It is essential that the microwave is equipped with the "defrost" function, as scallops are very fragile. If you use the standard setting, they will start to cook during the defrosting process. Consult the user manual to find out if your microwave has the "defrost" function.

Microwave thawed scallops tend to have a harder and more chewy texture than normal once cooked

Step 2. Place the frozen scallops in a bowl

Make sure the bowl is suitable for microwave use. Use a glass or ceramic bowl with high edges to contain the water that will form as the ice melts. Remove the scallops from their packaging and place them in the bowl.

Use a bowl large enough to easily hold the scallops you want to thaw

Step 3. Cover the bowl with a paper towel

Use a thick paper towel to cover the top of the bowl where you placed them to reduce the risk of them cooking when thawing in the microwave. The paper towels will help absorb any vapor or moisture that could change their texture.

It is best not to use thin paper towels, as they may get soggy and melt on contact with the scallops as they thaw. Use a thick 3-ply paper towel

Step 4. Defrost the scallops in the microwave

Do this for 30 seconds twice. If they start to cook, it will not be possible to go back, so it is best to be careful and thaw them for short periods of 30 seconds. After this time, take the bowl out of the oven and check if they are thawed by touching them with your finger. There should be no frozen parts.

  • If they are not yet completely thawed, put them back in the microwave for another 30 seconds, then check them again. Repeat the process until they are completely thawed.
  • Do not microwave them more than 4 times at 30 second intervals, otherwise they will start to cook and change in texture.


touch the thickest part in the center to confirm that all of the scallop is thawed.

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