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Cooking Tips: Cookout Mistakes that Can Make You Sick

It’s that time of the year! People are heading to the outdoors to enjoy some fresh air, sunshine, and delicious cookout foods! In order not to ruin your summer fun you need to take some precautions when you will cook out. Many people make classic cookout mistakes that can make you sick and miss out on precious sunny days. These simple cooking tips will be helpful for those people.

Cooking Tips for Outdoor Cooking

cooking tips

While cooking out for a picnic or outing, following some simple tips will make your trip successful. Cookout needs some extra care to avoid unexpected spoilage of foods.

Undercooked meats- 

Grilling up meat is a culinary feat. We aren’t all grilling masters. It can be hard to cook our meats fully without charring the outside. That is why this is one of the main reasons people get sick after a cookout. A burnt outside doesn’t necessarily mean our meat is cooked out of the danger zone.

To effectively kill bacteria in your meat, it needs to reach at least 145°F for pork, steaks, and seafood; 160° F for ground beef or ground pork, and 165° F for chicken. The only way to ensure the temperature is to bring along a thermometer and that can be hard to remember when you are headed to an outside location to do your grilling.

Sun soured foods- 

Potlucks and cookouts are a festive array of plastic and aluminum covered dishes on the outside picnic table with the beautiful sun beating down on the buffet. It may look appetizing but the temperature outside makes it hard to keep the food inside those containers at a safe to eat level.

Dangerous foods include pasta salads, potato salads, crudites with ranch or other dressings, deli meats and dips. In order to keep these from making you sick when eaten, keep them in a cooler with ice until right before you plan to eat and then return them to the cooler right after you are done if there are any leftovers.

outdoor cooking


Bonfires, charcoal, and gas, oh my god! Smokey air can be nice to smell and charcoal foods are hard to resist whafting in but the smoke is harmful to our health and it sticks to our hair, clothes, and skin and gets in your eyes and nose.

This type of smoke contains carbon monoxide and other dangerous chemicals that can make us less than healthy. Resist the urge to overdo your smoke inhalation and make sure you are cooking out in a well-ventilated area. Never do so in your garage or house.


Cooking out usually includes some nice cold beverages to go along with it. On a hot summer day, there is nothing like a cold beer to refresh you and unwind to enjoy your time off but you need to be careful. We aren’t saying you can’t have fun and enjoy your cocktails in the sun but you need to be aware of the danger of mixing alcohol with higher temperatures.

Alcohol causes dehydration, heat causes dehydration, you are getting dehydrated times two. Make sure you take it slow on the alcohol consumption. This isn’t time to be slamming back shots. Also, it would be a good rule of thumb that for every alcoholic drink you consume, drink 8oz of water. That amount needs to be increased if you are playing any sports or getting exercise in the sun. Taking precautions during your cookout will save you from a horrible hangover the next day.


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