As Super Bowl Sunday approaches, many of us eagerly anticipate gathering with friends and family to cheer on our favorite teams and indulge in delicious game day snacks. However, amidst the excitement and festivities, it’s essential to prioritize food safety to ensure that everyone enjoys the game without any unwanted penalties. Here are some tips to keep your Super Bowl spread safe and satisfying:
Cleanliness Is Key: Before you dive into your game day cooking marathon, start with a clean slate. Using water that is at least 85°F, scrub your hands thoroughly with soap and water for at least 10-15 seconds. After washing, rinse your hands and dry them using a single-use paper towel or an air dryer. Hands should be washed before handling any food items. Also, make sure your cooking surfaces, utensils, and appliances are properly sanitized to prevent cross-contamination.
Separate Raw and Ready-to-Eat Foods: When preparing your Super Bowl snacks, be sure to keep raw meats, poultry, and seafood separate from ready-to-eat foods like veggies and dips. Use separate cutting boards and utensils for raw and cooked items to avoid the risk of foodborne illnesses.
Cook to the Right Temperature: One of the most critical steps in ensuring food safety is cooking your dishes to the proper internal temperature. Use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature of meats.
- Seafood and steaks/chops of beef, pork, and lamb – 145°F for 15 seconds
- Ground meat – 155°F for 17 seconds
- Poultry – 165°F
Keep Hot Foods Hot and Cold Foods Cold: Maintain the temperature of your Super Bowl spread to prevent bacterial growth. Keep hot foods hot (135°F or above) using chafing dishes, slow cookers, or warming trays. Similarly, cold foods should be kept chilled (41°F or below) by placing them on ice beds or in refrigerators.
Mind the Buffet Line: If you’re hosting a buffet-style spread, take extra precautions to prevent the spread of germs. Consider serving smaller portions and replenishing dishes as needed rather than leaving large platters of food sitting out for extended periods. Encourage guests to use utensils rather than their hands to serve themselves.
Leftovers Safety: If you’re lucky enough to have leftovers after the game, be sure to store them properly. Divide large portions into smaller containers for quicker cooling and refrigerate leftovers within two hours. Leftovers should be consumed within 3-4 days or frozen for longer storage.
By following these food safety tips, you can ensure that your Super Bowl celebration is not only memorable but also safe and enjoyable for all. So, let the games begin, and may the best team—and the safest snacks—win! Make sure you are knowledgeable of the latest food safety procedures. Check out our Food Handler and Food Manager training!
Food safety is our number one priority at TSC Associates LLC. Educate yourself to ensure your staff is properly trained and implementing the appropriate protocols. Do you hold a ServSafe Food Manager Certification? Contact us today to learn how to earn yours!