July 4th is known for fireworks, fun, and FOOD! Grilling is a great way to make extra delicious food in a healthy way, but it comes with its own set of unique food safety challenges. Make sure you follow these rules to keep everything food safe!
Start food safety at the grocery store
When shopping for a grilled meal, pick up meat last. Make sure it is far away from other fresh food items like fruits and vegetables. Once you are home, immediately refrigerate food at 40 degrees F or below. Rinsing meat is not recommended due to the splashing that occurs, but for an extra cleaning measure, dip meat in CitroBio Fresh Food Wash for 5-10 seconds before grilling. CitroBio does not alter the smell, taste, or texture of food, and helps reduce harmful pathogens like E. coli, Salmonella, and Listeria.
Use separate utensils and plates for raw and cooked food
After carrying raw food out to the grill, make sure you place the dirty plate in the sink or dishwasher to be sanitized before it is reused. A separate clean plate should be used to transport the food back inside once it has been cooked. Never reuse the same plate unless it has been properly cleaned in between. Once the food has been cooked, thoroughly wash your tongs or utensils or use different ones for serving cooked food.
Keep cold foods at the proper temperature
Food can quickly spoil when they’re outside in the sun. Be sure your grill is hot and ready before bringing food outside to be cooked. Raw food should go directly on the grill once it’s been brought outside.
Use a thermometer
You may think you know what “done” looks like, but sometimes in the outdoor lighting it can be hard to tell. Use a food thermometer to check that foods are at the proper temperature before they come off the grill, and give them the correct amount of time to rest before cutting and serving. You can view a chart of temperatures and resting times here.