Target Temperatures for Grilling Meats and Chicken

For a long time, judging if meat was cooked to our liking was judged by look and feel, an uncertain art at best, it is actually pretty easy to get great results all the time when you use an instant-read thermometer. A thermometer is the only reliable way to measure internal temperature.

When grilling or baking meat and chicken, it is important to let the meat rest before cutting into it and serving.  If given the time to rest the meat will lose less juice when you cut it and when you eat it the meat will be juicier and tastier. Steaks or chops should stand for 5 minutes before serving while other thicker cuts should be longer. Remember that the meat with continue to cook even after being taken off the grill or out of the oven. Include that fact in your calculation of when to take the food from the heat.

Rely on the thermometer for doneness, and save your creativity for seasoning and presentation.

USDA Safe Minimum Family Cookbook Project Sugests
Chicken & Turkey
Whole or parts 165 165 breast 165-175 thigh
Beef & Lamb
Rare 125 + 3 minute rest
Medium rare 130-135
Medium 135-140
Medium well 145 + 3 minute rest 140-150
Well done 155+
Ground 160 160
Medium rare 145 + 3 minute rest 145 + 3 minute rest
Medium 150
Well done 160
Ground 160 160



Bill Rice is founder and Co-Publisher of the Great Family Cookbook Project, a website that helps families and individuals collect and share food memories through customized printed cookbooks filled with treasured recipes. Follow us on Facebook and Pinterest! Also check out our BBQ Recipes Facebook Group and Family BBQ and Grilling Recipes Pinterest board.


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