How to Wet Age Beef

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Serve the classic loaded baked potato with your steak.
Serve the classic loaded baked potato with your steak. (Image: Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

Since wet aged beef is more economical than dry aged beef, you're more likely to find it in restaurants and grocery stores. You can easily wet age cuts of beef at home if you own a vacuum-sealer. While it may lack the depth of flavor you'll find in dry-aged beef, this process tenderizes the meat without reducing its weight. Enzymes break down muscle tissue as the beef ages, resulting in a tender cut of meat.

Things You'll Need

  • Cut of meat
  • Refrigerator with precise temperature control
  • Vacuum sealer

Select a prime cut of beef, such as a filet or tenderloin. Use your vacuum sealer to enclose the meat in plastic.

Place the sealed bag in the coldest part of your refrigerator, usually the bottom shelf or a special meat drawer. The airtight seal will prevent the meat from absorbing odors.

Leave the sealed beef in the refrigerator for no longer than a week. Cut the meat out of the plastic when you're ready to cook it.

Tips & Warnings

  • Your butcher may vacuum seal the beef for a small cost if you don't own a vacuum sealer.
  • Don't age beef for more than a week. Beef that's wet aged for longer than seven days must be stored by professionals in a precisely controlled environment to prevent harmful bacteria from growing on the meat.

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