One of your top goals when preparing food for your family is to make sure it is safe. One thing moms should always be sure of is the temperature at which meat should be cooked.
Cook Pork to the Best Temperature
Recently, the USDA revised the cooking temperature for whole cuts of pork to 145°F with an additional 3-minute rest time to follow. Whole cuts of pork include pork loin, pork tenderloin, and pork chops.
The kitchen can be a hectic place! Having to remember details can sometimes be a struggle. With the new revision to pork’s final cooking temperature, all whole cut meats should be cooked to 145°F.
It is important not to confuse this new revision with the internal temperature of ground pork and other ground products. Ground meat products need to be cooked to an internal temperature of 160°F to be considered safe.
Since pork is a very lean protein source, following the internal cooking temperature of 145°F will make sure that the final product is tender and juicy. Overcooking will result in a dry and tough finished product. Anyone who has eaten a dry pork chop can agree it is not an enjoyable meal.
Prior to taking pork out of the desired heat source, it is important to allow a 3-minute rest time. This rest time ensures that harmful bacteria are killed along with allowing the juices to distribute evenly for the maximum flavor of the product.
Using a Meat Thermometer
When checking the internal temperature of pork, it is vital to check doneness in the correct spots of the cut. The meat thermometer should be inserted in the thickest part while also avoiding bone, fat, and gristle.
Making sure the correct internal temperature is met in any type of meat is a very important health concern. Having an accurate reading on the internal temperature of the pork product will make this task much easier.
Iowa Pork recommends using a digital meat thermometer for the most precise readings. Along with being accurate, digital thermometers are also quick and allow time for checking doneness in several different spots.
Try out this Brown Sugar Honey Mustard Pork Tenderloin. This perfectly juicy 145°F cooked tenderloin is a great dinner option for any day of the week.
Next time you are cooking a whole cut – pork tenderloin, pork loin, or pork chop – remember to cook to an internal temperature of 145°F followed by a 3-minute rest to allow for a juicy product that your family will not be able to resist.