Holiday Food Safety
This holiday season, it’s important to remember the importance of food safety when preparing foods to celebrate with friends and family.
Plan ahead. Thaw turkey in the refrigerator, and not at room temperature.
- Turkey will take approximately 24 hours for each 5 pounds
- Place the turkey in a container to prevent juices from dripping on other foods
- Do not prepare food when you are sick or not feeling well
- Wash hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and water as necessary during food preparation
- Bacteria on raw turkey can contaminate hands, utensils, cutting boards, and other kitchen surfaces. After working with raw turkey, wash your hands, utensils, and all surfaces before handling other food
- Check the internal temperature at the center of the stuffing and the center portions of the breast and thigh using a food thermometer. The food must reach a safe minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Leftovers should be cooled as quickly as possible using several shallow containers rather than one large container. This will help minimize food from being in the temperature danger zone - temperatures between 41F and 135F.
- Do not stack containers in refrigerator as this may trap heat.
- Leftovers should reach an internal temperature of 41F within four hours and can be kept for four days in the refrigerator. Be sure to reheat all leftovers to an internal temperature of 165F.