6 tips to prevent foodborne illnesses when grilling

Get ready to make some delicious food outdoors!
The tips below will prevent foodborne illnesses and keep you grilling all season long:

1. Wash your hands

Wash your hands with water and soap before you cook, and often while you cook.

2. Keep it cold

Keep food cold until you are ready to put it on the grill. Letting it sit allows bacteria to grow.

3. Don't mix

Don’t mix raw and cooked foods. Keep raw foods separate from each other. Once cooked, use a clean dish to place your final meal. The bacteria from the raw food will contaminate the freshly cooked meal.

4. Marinate in refrigerator

Marinate food in the refrigerator, not out on the counter. And if you want to use some of the marinade as a sauce on your food after it's been cooked, keep a separate portion in reserve. Don’t reuse marinades that contained raw meat.

5. Food thermometer

To kill any harmful bacteria that may be present, use a food thermometer. Hamburgers should be cooked to 160°F. If a thermometer is not available, make sure hamburgers are brown all the way through, not pink. Chicken should be cooked to at least 165°F.

6. Prevent bacteria growth

Keep hot food warm to at least 140°F until ready to be placed in a cooler with ice or refrigerator to prevent bacteria growth. For salads and cold foods, keep them chilled on ice.