How long will beef keep in the freezer?

trixietxDecember 19, 2008

I was looking in my freezer and on the very bottom was a whole beef tenderloin that has been in there since March, 2007. I cleaned out both freezers last August but I guess I didn't do a very good job.

It is in a vacuum sealed package. Do you think it would still be good?

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In a vacuum sealed package, it should be fine. You can usually tell if the meat is freezer burned (funny smell, changes in color). That's usually the only reason I throw it away (well, I give it to the cats). I find the fattier the meat, like pork, the quicker it gets freezer burned.

I just discovered some venison from 1999. (Talk about not doing a good job cleaning out the freezer!) DH made stock out of it, but the meat still tasted great.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2008 at 5:14PM
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It keeps forever......but may lose quality, depending on how well it was packaged.
Vecuum sealed in cryovac I am sure it will be fine.
However I might think about preparing a sauce to serve with it...just incase it has lost a bit of moisture.
Think bernaise or a creamy roquefort or perhaps Alexa's Steakside mushrooms.
Linda c

    Bookmark   December 19, 2008 at 6:15PM
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Absolutely, it's safe to eat.

As Linda says, it might be a bit compromised in texture, although I doubt it. Being prepared with a sauce certainly can't hurt,though.


    Bookmark   December 19, 2008 at 7:03PM
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Trixie I agree with the others that it will be just fine. I just wish that I would find a lost beef tenderloin in my freezer!:) Lucky you!

    Bookmark   December 19, 2008 at 7:32PM
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I'm glad you posted - I had pretty much the same question. I found some venison in the freezer that is probably 2 years old. (Unfortunately it is not vacuum sealed). Also found some ground deer meat, probably approaching 3 years old. All still safe to eat? I'm sure the quality has decreased, but might still make a good chili. Thanks!

    Bookmark   December 19, 2008 at 9:33PM
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If it's not been sitting around at 40 degrees, it's safe to eat.
Linda C

    Bookmark   December 19, 2008 at 9:46PM
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I agree with Linda C, if it's been frozen the entire time, it's safe to eat. It might not be GOOD to eat, if it's been sitting long enough, but safety is not an issue, only quality.


    Bookmark   December 19, 2008 at 10:06PM
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It is cryovaced. I thought it would be alright and it looks alright but wanted to make sure.

Thank you for your replies!

    Bookmark   December 19, 2008 at 10:26PM
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We raised meat chickens almost three years ago and still have some in the freezer. We vacuum-packed them and there is absolutely no freezer-burn and they taste completely fresh.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2008 at 10:39AM
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Trixie, if you are thinking of serving with a sauce as suggested above, you might like this recipe. One of my favourites to serve at a dinner party.

Home Cookin Chapter: Recipes From Thibeault's Table


2 to 3 pound beef tenderloin

Make a sauce using:
1-1/2 Cups red wine 1 1/2 cups beef
broth 1 clove of garlic minced 1
Tablespoon tomato paste pinch of thyme
Bring to a boil and simmer slowly
until reduced by half
Braise about 15 to 20 pearl onions
Saute 1/2 pound of sliced mushrooms
. Slice a beef tenderloin into 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch thick slices. Dry
well and brown on both sides in butter and oil. Add the onion and
mushrooms to the reduced wine sauce and thicken with 1 tablespoon of
flour blended with 1 tablespoon of butter. Add the beef to thicken
sauce. May be prepared up to this point and reheated later. Meat should
be rare to medium rare so be careful when you reheat. This is adjusted
from a Julia Child recipe.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2008 at 10:56AM
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I buy freezer beef a half at a time. With only 2-3 of us here, we have it, usually, 2 years. If it is vacuum packed, and that's the only way I will get it packaged, I have beef that tastes as fresh as the day we brought it home from the butcher. As long as the vacuum seal is still intact, it probably hasn't freezer burnt. In fact, I have found some dated 3 years before and it was fine.


    Bookmark   December 21, 2008 at 1:38PM
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