Cutting up a pineapple can feel daunting. Check out this how to video for an easy, stress free way to cut up a pineapple. Plus this will save you lots $$$ at the grocery store!
Stove and oven Safety
- Cook with Care-
-Never leave cooking unattended. Turn pot handles inward so that they are not pulled or knocked over. Position your oven racks before pre-heating to prevent burns.
- Keep Loose Items Away
– You should tie back long hair, roll up long sleeves, and remove any loose jewelry. Keep loose items, like towels or oven mitts, away from your cooking area as these can ignite and cause a fire.
- Protect Your Home from Fires
– Purchase a fire extinguisher to keep near your cooking area and install a smoke detector in your kitchen to help keep your kitchen safe from fires.
- Create a Child-Free (and Pet) Zone
-Setting a “Kid-Free” or “ Pet – Free” zone or using a baby gate can help keep children and pets away from your stove or oven to avoid injuries or accidents.
- Turn Off and Check Cooking Appliances
Make sure your stove burners and oven are off. Remove all items from stop top and inside oven. An oven should never be used for storage.
How to Grill Safely
When shopping, pick up meat, poultry, and seafood last, right before checkout. Separate them from other food in your shopping cart and grocery bags. To guard against cross-contamination, put packages of raw meat and poultry into indiv
idual plastic bags.
Keep meat, poultry, and seafood refrigerated until ready to grill. When transporting, keep below 40°F in an insulated cooler.
Check your grill and tools
Use a moist cloth or paper towel to clean the grill surface before cooking. If you use a wire bristle brush, thoroughly inspect the grill’s surface before cooking. Wire bristles from grill cleaning brushes may dislodge and stick into food on the grill.
Throw out marinades and sauces that have touched raw meat juices, which can spread germs to cooked foods. Use clean utensils and a clean plate to remove cooked meat from the grill.
Use a food thermometerExternal to ensure meat is cooked hot enough to kill harmful germs. When smoking, keep temperatures inside the smoker at 225°F to 300°F to keep meat a safe temperature while it cooks.
- 145°F – whole cuts of beef, pork, lamb, and veal (stand-time of 3 minutes at this temperature)
- 145°F – fish
- 160°F – hamburgers and other ground beef
- 165°F – all poultry and pre-cooked meats, like hot dogs
- 140°F or warmer – until it’s served
Divide leftovers into small portions and place in covered, shallow containers. Put in freezer or fridgeExternal within two hours of cooking (one hour if above 90°F outside).
Learn more from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention here.
When the warmer weather hits, there’s nothing better than the smell of food on the grill.
Seven out of every 10 adults in the U.S. have a grill or smoker*, which translates to a lot of tasty meals. But it also means there’s an increased risk of home fires.
In 2011 – 2015, fire departments went to an annual average of 9,600 home fires involving grills, hibachis or barbecues per year, including 4,100 structure fires and 5,500 outside or unclassified fires.
Watch this video below for safety tips!
Learn more from the National Fire Protection Association here.
For most, grocery shopping is the easy part. However, storing and putting your food away, that can be tricky! Here’s an excellent resource provided by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
- FREEZER (0°F or below):
- Wrap and label meat, fish and poultry that you plan to freeze.
- FRIDGE (34°F – 40°F):
- Dairy and eggs should be stored in the coldest part of the fridge, usually near the back and away from the door.
- Put meat in the meat drawer or on the lowest shelf of the refrigerator.
- Use the crisper or produce drawers for veggies!
- Olive oil and nut oils go rancid quickly when exposed to light and heat, which puts the kibosh on their healthful qualities. Refrigeration may cause these oils to become cloudy, but they’ll clear up when they return to room temperature.
- Cheese may be best served at room temperature — but, like all animal-derived food, still needs to be stored in the fridge. Take it out a short time before serving for the best flavor. Perishable foods, including cheese, should be thrown out if they are kept out of the refrigerator for two or more hours. In the warmer months, that amount of time will be less.
- Butter should be kept cold. Your grandma may have kept her butter in a crock on the counter to keep it nice and spreadable. However, keeping butter refrigerated avoids risky bacterial contamination. If you want soft butter, remove it for a little while before serving to let it soften.
- PANTRY or COUNTERTOP (50°F – 70°F):
- Canned goods last 2+ years but can be damaged by temperatures above 100°F.
- Mayo and similar condiments can be stored in the pantry; move them to the fridge when it’s been opened.
- Honey is very shelf-stable and will last a long time. Also, if you chill honey it becomes hard to pour, so keep it in your pantry.
- Tomatoes fare better when kept out of the fridge, where they can become mealy. It’s true that they spoil faster when stored on the counter. If you won’t be eating them within 1 to 2 days, store ripened tomatoes in the refrigerator for 2 or 3 days. However, keep in mind that once you cut into a tomato (or any fruit or vegetable), it needs to be refrigerated to slow the growth of harmful bacteria.
- Potatoes and Onions like the same conditions, but they should not be stored together. Potato starch turns to sugar when refrigerated. Potatoes and onions should be stored in a cool, dry place such as the bottom of your pantry. Remove any potatoes and onions that go bad in the pantry from the rest.
- Bread can stale quickly in the fridge due to the dry circulating air. If you’re afraid your bread will become moldy because your kitchen is hot or humid, or because you won’t be eating it quickly, freeze it. You can remove only what you need and thaw it on the counter or in the toaster on the “defrost” setting.
- Peanut butter becomes difficult to spread when it’s cold, so store it in your pantry if you will use it within 2 to 3 months. Store in the refrigerator for 4 to 6 months. However, if you buy natural peanut butter, check the label; some brands recommend refrigeration to keep the natural oils from separating.
- Fruits with pits, like peaches and plums, should be placed in a closed paper bag until ripe — then refrigerated. Keep tomatoes in the pantry only if they’ll be eaten within 1-2 days — otherwise, they go in the fridge.
Visit eatright.org for more information on healthful eating or to find a registered dietitian nutritionist.
Click here for a handy printable chart on Storing Fruits and Veggies from Purdue Extension.
Share the dip, not the germ! Although the temptation to dip again is normal…Don’t double dip! Research has proven and science suggests that double dipping can be hazardous to your health. Double dipping contaminates the dip with bacteria from your mouth and hands. Check out these options to keep in mind when dip is the center of attention!