During Thanksgiving, most families prepare a traditional turkey meal with scrumptious sides. However, a holiday meal can be difficult to prepare with so many foods being cooked at different temperatures. It's easy to forget that food safety is the most important ingredient. Proper handling, cleaning, and cooking can make a healthy, safe, and delicious meal. Take a look at these Thanksgiving food safety tips below to have an enjoyable holiday with family and friends.
- When you go to the supermarket, check the quality of all products that you buy. Check the color, firmness and texture of the produce and meats, and check expiration dates.
- Overcrowding the freezer can raise temperatures dangerously high and spoil your food.
- Don't defrost your turkey at room temperature because bacteria might grow. Defrost your turkey in the fridge a few days before Thanksgiving.
- Make sure that the turkey is thawed before you place it in the oven. If you put a frozen turkey in the oven, the inside won't cook properly and the outside will burn.
- To ensure harmful bacteria are killed, the turkey should be cooked where its internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. The turkey stuffing should also be cooked until it reaches 165 degrees.
- While preparing food, wash your hands thoroughly to prevent the spread of bacteria.
- Raw turkey and fresh produce don't mix. When prepping, keep these foods on separate surfaces to prevent cross contamination.
Keep the food in the fridge or freezer until you need to use it. The longer food sits out, the more likely food bugs will appear.