Summer is a great time to enjoy an outdoor barbeque with family and friends! However, as temperatures rise, so does the risk of foodborne illnesses. Harmful bacteria in food multiplies rapidly when food heats up with the summer temperatures. Enjoy a food safe summer with these food safety tips:
- Clean your hands, grill, food surfaces, and utensils before and after preparing food. Proper cleaning prevents the spread of illness-causing bacteria that can grow on these surfaces. Always pack soap and water or disposable wipes for your BBQs.
- Separate raw meats from produce and other pre-cooked foods. Never use the same plate for raw foods and cooked foods.
- Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. Store cold foods in coolers at or below 40°F and hot foods at or above 140°F until serving time. Do not leave food out for more than 2 hours, or 1 hour if outside temperature is above 90°F.
- Use a thermometer. Checking the color of food is unfortunately not an accurate way to know if food is cooked properly. Keep a food thermometer near your grill or in your picnic basket. Here are some safe cooking temperatures:
|Ground or Burgers of Beef, Pork, Veal, Lamb||160°F|
|Ground or Whole Poultry||165°F|
|Steaks, Chops, and Roasts of Beef, Pork, Lamb, Veal||145°F|
|Leftovers, Casseroles, and Fully Cooked Meats||165°F|
- Cancer–Safe Grilling. High-heat grilling of meats has been linked to the potential formation of cancer-causing substances known as carcinogens. Studies have shown marinating meat, trimming off the fat, cooking smaller portions of meat, and cutting off charred pieces can decrease carcinogen formation. Filling your grill and plate with more fruits and vegetables and less meat also reduced carcinogens because grilled fruits and vegetable do not create these carcinogens.
Keep these tips in mind to have a safe and healthy BBQ season!