Cooking food

Food poisoning isn’t just something you get outside your home – the meals you prepare can be a source of food poisoning too.

Germs such as salmonella and E. coli can strike at any time, but the good news is you can kill them through cooking:

  • Always follow the instructions on the label.
  • Always check your food is steaming hot in the middle – there should be steam coming out.
  • Don't reheat food more than once.
  • When reheating, take extra care your food is cooked all the way through.

It's especially important to make sure poultry, pork, burgers and sausages are cooked all the way through. If there's any pink meat or the juices have any pink or red in them, germs could be lurking. Some meat, such as steaks and joints of beef or lamb, can be served rare as long as the outside has been properly cooked.

Food Standards Scotland strongly advises that burgers made at home are cooked properly, by checking there is no pink in the middle and the juices run clear, or preferably by using a meat thermometer to ensure that the internal temperature reaches 75 degrees C. Harmful bacteria including E. coli O157, can contaminate the surface of beef cuts and are mixed throughout the meat after mincing and forming into burgers. The only way these bacteria can be eliminated is by thorough cooking, and it is therefore really important to ensure the burger is cooked all the way through. Following this advice will you to provide a tasty, juicy burger which is also safe to eat.

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