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Cook to a Safe Minimum Internal Temperature

food thermometer in roasted chicken

Follow the guidelines below for how to cook raw meat, poultry, seafood, and other foods to a safe minimum internal temperature. Always use a food thermometer to check whether meat has reached a safe minimum internal temperature that is hot enough to kill harmful germs that cause food poisoning.

Some meats also need rest time after cooking. Rest time is important for certain meats because it allows the innermost parts and juices of the meats to become fully and safely cooked.

Safe Minimum Internal Temperature Chart for Cooking

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FoodTypeInternal Temperature (°F/°C)
Beef, bison, veal, goat, and lambSteaks, roasts, chops145°F (63°C)
Rest time: 3 minutes
Ground meat and sausage160°F (71°C)
CasserolesMeat and meatless165°F (74°C)
Chicken, turkey, and other poultryAll: whole bird, breasts, legs, thighs, wings, ground poultry, giblets, sausage, and stuffing inside poultry165°F (74°C)
EggsRaw eggsCook until yolk and white are firm
Egg dishes (such as frittata, quiche)160°F (71°C)
Casseroles (containing meat and poultry)165°F (74°C)
HamRaw ham145°F (63°C)
Rest time: 3 minutes
Precooked ham (to reheat)165°F (74°C)
Note: Reheat cooked hams packaged in USDA-inspected plants to 140°F (60°C)
LeftoversAny type165°F (74°C)
PorkSteaks, roasts, chops145°F (63°C)
Rest time: 3 minutes
Ground meat and sausage160°F (71°C)
Rabbit and venisonWild or farm-raised160°F (71°C)
SeafoodFish (whole or filet), such as salmon, tuna, tilapia, pollock, bass, cod, catfish, trout, etc.145°F (63°C) or cook until flesh is no longer translucent and separates easily with a fork
Shrimp, lobster, crab, and scallopsCook until flesh is pearly or white, and opaque
Clams, oysters, musselsCook until shells open during cooking
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