Safety Food Tips For Cooking Your Thanksgiving Meal

This Thanksgiving as you prepare the dishes for your family to feast upon, be sure you are aware of vital safety tips that can protect you and your family from any food related illnesses. Although constantly overlooked, things such as using the proper cooking temperatures, and preventing cross-contamination are extremely important. Be sure the only tummy troubles your family experiences on Thanksgiving come from eating too much food! Check out these tips to a safe thanksgiving meal.

Choose your food carefully. As you shop in the store you may pick up your essential items without closely examining the labels, or noticing if there is something wrong with the packaging. Opening up a spoiled package while preparing your Thanksgiving dinner is disappointing and time consuming.


Avoid the need to have to run back to the grocery store, and shop early. This way you can properly open and check the texture, coloring, and packaging of your veggies, fruits, and meat.

Defrost your meat properly

Defrost your meat properly. Whether it’s turkey or ham, these large portions normally come frozen from the store and have to be defrosted. Avoid doing an overnight defrost on the counter. This can lead to meat juices contaminating the countertop, and excess bacteria. 

Instead, days before you plan on cooking, make room in your refrigerator and defrost your meat there. A well-known rule of thumb is to give your meat 24 hours of defrost time for every five pounds of meat. Be sure to place your meat on a pan to catch any juices that may drip.

Properly cook your turkey. In order to destroy harmful bacteria on the meat it must be cooked at the proper temperature. Although many people check the doneness by looking at the color of the meat, the best way to make sure your meat is done is to use a thermometer. 


Check the turkey in both thicker areas, and outer locations such as the wing or leg. After your turkey has reached the proper temperature, let it sit for 20 minutes to complete the cooking process. After that it’s ready to be carved, and served!

Neighbors Emergency Center supports your start to a healthier lifestyle. We have two new locations opening up this Saturday, November 21st! Our new El Paso center is located at 12101 Edgemere Blvd., El Paso TX 79938, and the new Port Arthur center is located at 3330 Hwy., Port Arthur, TX 77642. With a 24 hour emergency rooms throughout the Houston metro area, we can treat you quickly and effectively, even during the holidays!

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