Tips to Keep Lunch Box Foods Safe for Consumption

Back-to-school means back to packing lunches. And when packing lunches, it’s important to always keep food safety in mind. Perishable foods must be kept cold until eaten. It’s also important to note that when lunches are being prepared, the preparer must wash their hands with soap and water before packing lunches, as well as using clean and safe cutting boards, utensils, and work surfaces. The best lunch boxes or bags are those that are insulated. If you’re packing perishable foods, you should place two sources of ice in the lunch box or bag, such as two frozen gel packs, a...

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4 Ways to Instill Food Safety in Your Kids

How many times have you sat down at the dinner table only to notice that it looks like your child hasn’t had a bath in days, just by noticing their fingernails?! Kids will be kids. They have no reservations when it comes to play. Making mud pies, picking up frogs, and digging in the dirt is their thing. That’s a kid’s life. So it’s a parent’s job to teach their kids about cleanliness, and the same goes for food safety. Here are 4 easy ways for you to educate your kids on how to be food-safe: Share a story that...

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Tips for Making Your Kitchen Food-Safe

When it comes to you and your family and food safety, you must make sure that your kitchen is equipped with the right tools in order to keep food bacteria at bay. Here are some tips that will help reduce the risk of cross-contamination and foodborne illnesses. Cutting Boards. You should always have two cutting boards handy: one for raw meats and seafood and one for raw produce and ready-to-eat foods. This will prevent the cross-contamination of meat and seafood juices getting onto produce and ready-to-eat foods. Containers. If you have cooked leftovers, you should store them in shallow containers...

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Do You Know the Proper Places to Store Produce?

Did you know that there are some fruits and vegetables that should not be stored in the refrigerator? It’s true. Some fruits and vegetables are cold-sensitive, therefore should be stored at room temperature. Here is a list of produce and where they should be stored once you get home. Apples – refrigerate Apricots – refrigerate Avocado – do not refrigerate AND refrigerate. If your avocados are unripe, you should leave them at room temperature to ripen as refrigeration can slow down the ripening process. Note: Ripe avocados that have not been cut can be stored in the refrigerator for 2...

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How to Use a Food Thermometer

Sure you can guess if your 2” filet mignon steak or beer can chicken has cooked through enough internally for safe eating. But why? Why risk food poisoning? Besides, that’s what food thermometers are for. And for as little as they cost, they’re a big investment in staying food-safe. Here’s how to properly use a food thermometer: Choose your food thermometer. There are several different types of food thermometers for different cooking methods: dial oven-safe thermometer, digital instant-read thermometer, dial instant-read thermometer, pop-up thermometer, thermometer-fork combination thermometers, microwave-safe thermometer, or disposable temperature indicator. Calibrate your food thermometer and then test...

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Food Thermometers: Which One Should You Buy?

If you’ve never used a food thermometer before, you should invest in one (or more) solely for food safety, although they are incredibly convenient as well. Not sure which one you should buy? You’re not alone. Thermometers vary depending on your method of cooking. Here is a list of food thermometers with basic information to help you choose. Dial instant-read thermometers. GOOD FOR: Casseroles, roasts, and soups. HOW TO USE: Not designed to stay in food while food is cooking. Use near the end of the cooking time. Insert into the food about 2” to 2½” deep into the thickest...

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Kitchen Sponge Safety

There’s no doubt that kitchen sponges are convenient kitchen must-haves that make our lives easier, but did you know they can absorb harmful foodborne pathogens? Because of this, there are some things to keep in mind in order to minimize cross-contamination via sponges. Discard and replace often. In no time at all—sometimes after just 2 or 3 uses—a sponge can become chock-full of bacteria. Sanitizing sponges may help reduce the risk of food poisoning. But if your sponge starts to smell, throw it out. Never use a sponge to clean countertops or to wipe up meat juices. Use paper towels...

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10 Tips to Reduce Cross-Contamination?

Cross-contamination happens when juices from raw meats or germs from unclean objects touch cooked or ready-to-eat foods. And cross-contamination is how harmful bacteria can spread. Here are a few steps you can take during the purchasing, handling, cooking, and storing processes to reduce the risk of cross-contamination and food poisoning. When shopping, make sure to keep produce and ready-to-eat foods separated in your grocery cart from fresh or frozen, raw meat, poultry, seafood, and eggs. When bagging foods do the same, place meat, poultry, and seafood in plastic bags separate from produce and ready-to-eat foods to prevent juices from leaking....

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Grilled Caprese Stacks with Zucchini

There’s no better way to make a pretty presentation at the dinner table then with this recipe. Grilled Caprese Stacks with Zucchini feature some of summer’s most beloved vegetables: tomatoes, zucchini, and basil. And the additional ingredients add extra flavor and flair. And the best part is that this scene-stealing side dish is super healthy. Zucchini is an excellent source of copper and manganese, tomatoes are an excellent source of biotin, molybdenum, and vitamins C and K, and basil is an excellent source of manganese and vitamin K. This dish is Instagram-worthy. Grilled Caprese Stacks with Zucchini Ingredients 2 zucchini,...

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Freezing Foods 101

Thanks to freezers we’re able to stock up on great deals on everything from fresh meat, poultry, and seafood to flash frozen produce to heat-and-eat dishes. But there are some foods that should not be placed in the freezer, such as hard-boiled eggs (they’ll get rubbery), eggs in shells (they’ll expand and crack), egg-based sauces (they’ll separate and curdle), and salad greens (they’ll wilt), just to name a few. Foods that are good to freeze include most breads, butter and margarine, and meat, poultry, and fish. Here are some tips on packing and preventing freezer burn. When packing foods to...

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