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University of Illinois Extension Nutrition Educator Says Cleanliness Paramount When Preparing Thanksgiving Meal

As you get set to spend a substantial amount of time in the kitchen preparing that Thanksgiving dinner, a University of Illinois Extension nutrition educator is reminded of the importance of a clean kitchen.


Whether you're preparing everything the day of or doing some pre-dinner work in the days leading up to that Thanksgiving meal, Caitlin Mellendorf explains it is very important to keep surfaces, utensils, and plates and bowls clean as well as your hands.



According to Mellendorf, a lot of germs can be transferred from surfaces like our phones or other electronic devices you have in the kitchen. While it feels like you might be washing your hands all the time, she says it goes a long way to keeping people healthy after the holiday.



Mellendorf indicates getting the internal temperature of the festive bird is very important. She explains if you are cooking the turkey in the oven, you want to cook it at a minimum temperature of 325-degrees.



When you go to take the temperature of the turkey, you want to check the inner part of the thigh meat, the inner part of the wing, and the thickest point of the breast meat. You are looking for a temperature of 165-degrees in those places. 


For more helpful tips, Mellendorf encourages a visit to usda.gov. 

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