12 Food Safety Mistakes You’re Definitely Making In The Kitchen
Refrigerating hot leftovers
You should keep food outside the danger zone not only when it’s on the table but also when it’s inside your fridge. If you put hot leftover inside it, you risk increasing the internal temperature of the fridge. Apart from ruining the other foods inside, it can also ruin the fridge’s motor.
Captain’s tip: Allow hot food to cool down. You can even put it in smaller recipients so that it cools easier.
“The FDA recommends cooling foods to 70 degrees Fahrenheit within the first two hours after cooking and 40 degrees Fahrenheit within four hours after that,” says Lisa McManus. “We stay within these guidelines by cooling food on the countertop for about an hour, until it reaches 80 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit (food should be just warm to the touch), then transferring it to the fridge.”
To make things even safer, label the containers so that you know what’s inside and when it was prepared. Anything older than a week should be discarded.