These “hot-off-the grill” tips will keep you, and your family, safe at your Memorial Day gatherings.
Memorial Day weekend isn’t just the unofficial start of summer; the long weekend marks the official start of grilling season. Grilling fruits, vegetables, potatoes and meats can be a healthier alternative to some of our cooking methods, but we need to remember that grilling foods safely is just as important, too.
1.) Beware of Undercooked Foods
Undercooked foods from the grill are the most common dishes that cause food poisoning. Using a thermometer can help ensure that burgers, chicken, and other grilled favorites are thoroughly cooked. Chicken needs to reach a temperature of 165 degrees F, hamburgers to 160 degrees F, and pork chops should cook to 145 degrees F.
2.) Take Care of Your Leftovers
Leftovers after a picnic save on meal planning later in the week. Just remember to keep leftovers in a shallow container, no more than 3 inches deep. Grilled foods will lose their taste and quality quickly, so it is recommended to throw them out after 3 or 4 days. When reheating, be sure that the foods reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
3.) Watch out for Those Condiments
Don’t forget the Heinz 57! Condiment bacteria can be a culprit of picnic sicknesses. Condiments should not be left outside for more than two hours if it’s less than 90 degrees F.
In temperatures hotter than 90, be sure to refrigerate after one hour. Bring a cooler to your picnic or keep them in a bucket of ice. Also, prior to grilling, be sure to marinate meat in the refrigerator, and reheat any sauces to a boil before using them.
Develop your taste for safety, and enjoy the grill this Memorial Day weekend!