Smoked Meats 101 - Safe Internal Cooking Temperatures


  • Team Blue Admin Walton's Employee

    Smoked Meat

    Smoked Meats 101 - Safe Internal Cooking Temperatures

    Attend this entry level class from Meatgistics University by watching the video, reading the article and post any questions you have!

    Slicer

    Why Cook To A Specific Temperature?

    Roughly 1 in 6 U.S. citizens will suffer from some form of a foodborne illness every year according to the CDC. There are many reasons for this but one good way to prevent this from happening is to cook your meats to the FDA recommended internal cooking temperature. Reaching this temperature will kill off harmful germs and spores associated with that meat type and form.

    What Are The Safe Internal Temperatures?

    For Beef, Pork, Veal and Lamb you want to cook entire pieces like steaks, chops or roasts up to 145° and cook any ground product like hamburger or ground beef up to 160°. The reasoning for this is that the center of something like a steak has been protected from being introduced to harmful bacteria by the meat on the outside, as soon as you grind that up you are potentially exposing all of it to the bacteria.

    For Poultry, like chicken and turkey, you want to cook your meat until the internal temperature is 165°. This includes all cuts of poultry including the breast, legs, wings, and ground meat. This is going to kill off a large number of harmful bacteria including E. Coli, Salmonella and Staphylococcus amongst other.

    For Fish, including shellfish, the safe internal temperature is also 145°. There are obviously some exceptions to this like sushi and sashimi but those are made safe in other ways, mostly freezing it to a temperature that will kill any parasites that are living within the fish.

    How Can You Monitor This?

    The best way to ensure you are cooking your meat to the correct internal temperature is to use a digital probe thermometer. The Grilleye Pro Plus Thermometer makes monitoring your foods internal temperature easy, with this system you leave the probe in the meat through the cooking process. It communicates the temperature back to the base of the unit that sits outside the smoker or grill and this one will communicate that information back to your smartphone so you don’t even have to be able to see the base unit to monitor the temperature.

    USDA Documentation

    Check out the USDA’s documentation on Safe Minumum Internal Temperatures and also check out the USDAs Appendix A specifically the bottom where it shows you the time and temp holds for lethality treatments.

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  • Hi Jonathon

    The USDA link is only posted on the YouTube site. You should consider posting on the pages in the Walton site as well.

    https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/food-safety-education/get-answers/food-safety-fact-sheets/safe-food-handling/safe-minimum-internal-temperature-chart/ct_index


  • Team Blue Admin Walton's Employee

    Masya That’s a good point and thanks for posting it in the comments, I will go ahead and add it to the article as well!


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