Basics To Food Prep Sanitation You Need To Know
Food & Dining | June 03, 2021
Dealing with food can be an unhygienic experience, but there are some basics to food prep sanitation you need to know to keep everything healthy.

Preparing food involves being hands-on with your ingredients and can lead to unhealthy meals if prepared incorrectly. The bacteria from your hands, countertops, utensils, and cross-contamination all run the risk of infecting your food and spreading to those consuming what you create. For this reason, there are some basics to food prep sanitation you need to know to avoid situations where you may be putting the health of others at risk due to your cooking.

Keep Everything Clean

From the food you’re handling to the tools you’re using, make sure that everything is washed, cleaned, and ready to handle. Start with cleaning your hands under warm water with soap for at least 20 seconds. After your hands are clean, wash off any knives, cutting boards, dishes, and countertops as you go; once you finish up with a particular food, clean up everything before you move on to the next. 

Know What Foods To Clean Directly

This typically applies to only fruits and vegetables, but you need to know the best methods to clean foods properly before adding them in as ingredients. Fruits and vegetables can carry germs and bacteria that you can easily wash before they reach anyone’s plate. 

Keep Food Separate

One of the most vital pieces of knowledge you can have while prepping food is to keep raw meat separate from everything else. Whether it’s beef, pork, poultry, or seafood, raw meat contains harmful bacteria that can easily soak into nearby food, infecting them and causing them to carry and spread illness. 

Separate Cutting Boards

You may feel inclined to reuse utensils and cutting boards between food groups to reduce the clean-up afterward, but you must use separate tools. Utilize different equipment when working with raw meats; the danger of cross-contamination is a serious concern in food preparation. 

Keep Food at The Right Temperature

Meat poses a significant problem until you cook it fully, but you must ensure that the meat is, in fact, cooked thoroughly. Meat cooks from the outside, slowly cooking through to the center, and it can be easy to serve undercooked meat. Whether you have a meat thermometer or decide to cut the meat into smaller pieces, ensure that there is no raw meat left when you take it out of the pan. 

Know the Different Temperatures

Each type of meat has a specific temperature that it needs to reach before it is considered cooked; those temperatures include:

  • Beef, pork, lamb – 145 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Fish – 145 degrees Fahrenheit 
  • Turkey, chicken – 160 degrees Fahrenheit 

Remain Thorough in Your Cleaning Procedures

Dealing with food is a delicate business and knowing the basics of food prep sanitation will allow you to avoid any dangerous circumstances. Keep yourself and those consuming your food safe by giving them the healthiest meals possible.



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