Keeping Your Meals at Home Safe
When You Are Cooking
- Do not put metal in the microwave (foil, tin can, etc.).
- When using the microwave, cover food. Stir or turn the food halfway through cooking to heat evenly.
- Do not put items that can burn in the oven (plastic, paper, cotton, etc.).
- When using the oven, set the temperature to 325 degrees or higher.
- If you have a food thermometer, be sure foods are cooked to a safe internal
- Use your thermometer to check the temperature in 2-3 places, including the thickest part of the meat to make sure the food cooked
- Allow meat to sit for three minutes before carving or eating This will help the meat keep moisture and have better flavor.
- Here are safe temperatures for cooking certain foods:
- whole cuts of beef, pork, veal, and lamb - 145°F
- ground meats, such as beef and pork - 160°F
- poultry, including ground chicken and turkey - 165°F
- fresh ham (raw)-145°F
- fish - 145°F
- leftovers and casseroles - 165°F
- If you don't have a thermometer, cook raw meats until there is no blood and the meat is not pink
Keeping Things Cold
- After getting your food, refrigerate or freeze it in two hours or
- If it is above 90 degrees outside, refrigerate or freeze your food
- After cooking food, put in small containers and refrigerate leftovers in two hours or
- Keep your refrigerator at 40degrees or Freezers need to be at 0degrees or below.
- Thaw frozen food in the refrigerator or in the Never thaw food on the counter. Bacteria grows fast at room temperature.
Fruits and Vegetables
- Rinse all fruits and vegetables with water before eating them. This includes produce with skins like avocados, bananas, and melons.
- When fruits and vegetables are cut, bacteria from the skin can get into the part you eat.
- Do not use soap or bleach to wash your fruits and vegetables.
- Do not rinse packaged fruits and vegetables labeled "ready-to-eat" or "washed."
- Keep fruits and vegetables stored above and away from uncooked meat, seafood, chicken, eggs, or chemicals
- Wash your hands with soap and water for 20 If you do not have soap and water, use a hand sanitizer with 60% alcohol. Cover your hands with the sanitizer and rub them together until they feel dry.
- Wash your hands before and after touching food, after you sneeze, blow your nose, and use the bathroom.
- Wash and rinse dishes, knives, forks, and spoons with hot soapy water before and after eating food.
- Clean kitchen counters and tables with soap or disinfectant and use paper towels or dish towels. Wash dish towels often in hot water.
- Foods that spoil fast are called perishable. Eat those foods first.
- Foods like cooked chicken, cooked noodles or pasta, sandwiches, salads, milk, and fresh whole and cut fruit are perishable.
- Eat, freeze, or throw away perishable food within 7 days.
- Foods like nut butters (peanut, almond, soy), crackers, uncooked noodles or pasta, canned foods, and frozen foods stay fresh longer. Eat these last.
- Containers of milk that have not been opened are usually safe to drink for up to 1 week after the sell-by date. If you are not sure, smell it first. If it smells bad, do not drink it.
- If you are sick do not handle food.
More Food Safety Information:
- canr.msu.edu/eat_healthy be active/food-safety