We all think of November as the month with the major food holiday of Thanksgiving. It is a time to prepare some of our favorite family recipes, spend time in the kitchen with loved ones, and take the time to prepare recipes that we wouldn’t normally prepare during the week. One of the best things about Thanksgiving is the leftovers!
We work hard to prepare that food so the last thing that we want to do is to toss it out. People will eat leftovers for days and get creative with ways to consume all the leftover turkey and ham. However, keep in the mind the importance of food safety when eating leftovers. You can put you and your family at risk for food poisoning if you don’t follow some simple rules for storing and reheating Thanksgiving foods.
1. Refrigerate your leftovers to a temperature below 40° within 2 hours.
2. Store the leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator at 40° or below.
3. When reheating leftovers, heat them at a temperature of 165° or higher.
4. Check the shelf life of your leftovers and only eat the leftovers within the safe amount of time.
Not sure about what the “safe amount of time” is for your foods? Well, you are in luck because there is an app for that! Download the free Is My Food Safe app. This is a great resource that guides you on when to toss your foods based on what the food item is. It provides the safe refrigerator and freezer times for food storage. Lastly, remember the motto “when in doubt, throw it out!” Let’s keep our food safe this Thanksgiving season!