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BURGER TEMP CHART

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Burger temp chart

Nothing says American more than a burger perfectly grilled over a charcoal grill. Whether for dinner, lunch, or just a snack, a grilled burger with a smoky flavor paired with a slice of cheese and vegetables is sure to satisfy any customer at your food establishment. Despite the many controversies of foodborne illnesses related to consuming undercooked burger patties, there are ways to serve safe, medium-rare doneness burgers for those who want juicier burgers with the natural juices of the meat still present. The key is in the proper food preparation and accurate cooking temperatures. Get your burger temp chart and meat thermometer to ensure that every burger you serve is safe and of top quality.

A burger patty with grill marks on the outside does not necessarily mean that the patty is cooked to the target degree of doneness. Food handlers need to base their judgment on the internal temp of the beef patty when cooking burgers. The degree of doneness is not the only dependent parameter to the minimum temperature, but the safety of your food as well. To achieve a perfectly grilled burger, a properly calibrated thermometer, internal temperature guide, and exact minutes of cooking time are essential. These instruments can become your best defense against a matter of safety or illness and can save your food business from any potentially damaging situations.

Learn how to use a burger temp chart to achieve your target doneness with a food thermometer and perfect temperature readings. 

 

What is a burger temp chart?

A burger temp chart is a simple tool that shows the correct internal temps to achieve a particular degree of doneness for burger patties. It can serve as a guide for food handlers on how to properly achieve a target level of doneness. Cooking burgers may be a bit tricky. While whole cuts of steaks and roasts can be safely served undercooked with rare to medium-rare doneness, it's quite a different story when it comes to burger meat.

Burger patties, although often made with beef, can be composed of beef, chicken, pork, veal, or a combination of other types of meat to make different types of burgers. It is usually seasoned with garlic, onions, herbs, and other spices. What makes burger patties more sensitive to harmful bacteria is the fact that the inherent microorganisms on the surface of the used raw meat were distributed throughout the meat after the grinding process using a food processor. Ground meat also has a more exposed surface area which makes it more prone to contamination. One thing cooking steak and burgers have in common is their need for a three-minute rest time for carryover cooking from the residual heat. This process allows the dish to achieve maximum flavors and correct cooking.

There is more to the process of actual burger cooking to achieve the perfect burger flavor. In addition to attaining a target temperature, the exact minutes of grill time for burgers is also important. Depending on the thickness and composition of a burger patty such as the types of meat used, cook times may vary. Food handlers must always consider this factor as it plays a significant role in achieving a certain level of doneness. This factor has to be considered in combination with the three-minute rest time after removing the burgers from the heat. 

There have been several cases of food poisoning as a result of eating an undercooked hamburger. One of the most prominent cases would have to be the Jack-in-the-box incident which prompted major food safety agencies and health departments to make the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) a mandatory requirement. To prevent food poisoning from occurring, the quality of meat as well as the food safety practices employed during the preparation of fresh beef burger patties must be strictly observed.

 

Who needs a burger temp chart?

A burger temp chart can be used by restaurants, food trucks, burger stands, cafeterias, and all other food businesses that serve burger patties. Food establishments serving burgers and other burger recipes with the option to have them undercooked must be properly guided on how to achieve their target doneness. Serving undercooked burger dishes can only be done if your kitchen team prepares the patties personally and if your business adopts a very strict safety management system. Eyeballing the degree of doneness is a very irrelevant method and is very prone to causing foodborne illnesses. Even food safety experts would recommend using a guide and a calibrated food thermometer when cooking a perfect burger.

Whether your team uses a two-stage cooking method or a direct heat method, the information from a burger cooking chart is still relevant. The two-stage method allows employees to achieve the internal temperature slowly but surely. It uses a grilling area that only receives an indirect heat source and another which is a high-heat section to finish the process. On the contrary, the direct burger cooking method uses only one heat source. Regardless of which is your favorite method for grilling burgers, a burger temp chart would be much useful.

Hamburger temperature chart

What are the benefits of a burger temp chart?

With a detailed burger temp chart, the risk of undercooking beef burgers would be minimized. Different customers may have different descriptions of their favorite burgers are; whether they want a well-done burger or a medium-rare burger to preserve the internal juices of the patty. Other than preference, a burger cooking chart can also help preserve food safety, especially for customers with weak immune systems. A burger temp chart can help you control food safety and train food employees on how to cook burgers with varying degrees of doneness.

A burger internal temperature chart can help provide the following specific benefits:

  • Guide for health and food safety. Properly cooking burgers or ground beef is often not just about preference but safety reasons as well. Some customers are not suited to consuming undercooked beef burgers because of the customer's weak immune systems. Children, pregnant, the elderly, and people with preexisting illnesses are very prone to contracting foodborne diseases when compared with healthy individuals. As such, their beef burgers must always be cooked to the ideal temperature. The USDA recommends cooking ground beef to at least 160°F and ground chicken meat and other poultry to 165°F. This heat setting should especially be followed for store-bought ground beef as it may have been exposed to sources of contamination along with its processing. Some beef temp charts may even suggest a grilling timing range as well as descriptions of how to use the two-part process for cooking a safe and tasty burger.

  • Accurate degree of doneness. Cooking a juicy burger is more than just getting the grill marks. There is a lot of focus that needs to go into preparing one. Customers who prefer a slight pink and an extra flavor on their burger patties may order a medium burger. To get this degree of doneness, the actual burger cooking must reach the internal temperature of 140°F to 150°F . A few degrees below and your burger will turn out medium-rare, whereas a few degrees above will result in a medium-well burger - all of which have different flavor profiles, texture, and overall eating experience. It may also include grill timings. A burger temp chart can help food employees achieve the perfect degree of doneness of a delicious burger every time.

  • Cost-saving. Serving the wrong degree of doneness can result in two scenarios, one is that the customer can become dissatisfied with your service which is bad for publicity, and the next is that you may cause a foodborne illness to the customer. These issues may even become bigger depending on the degree of damage that the breach of food safety has caused. In a worst-case scenario, your food business can face lawsuits. Using a beef burger temperature chart and a food thermometer can minimize these risks to help you avoid unnecessary costs from damage control and wasting food.

  • Employee training. A slice of juicy burger meat has a different set of precautions compared to a steak with garlic and other seasonings. As such, employees must be well aware of the consequences when the correct cooking procedure, meat temperature control, and proper grilling times are not properly followed. A burger temp chart can be used to orient food employees on how to cook burger patties correctly. It can also become an avenue to introduce the consequences of inadequate safety precautions in an establishment.

Cooking up a juicy burger would require every assigned food handler to always make sure that the target internal temperature is reached. In combination with using a beef burger temperature chart, you would also need an appropriate cooking log template for verification of the cooking process. This document can help your team ensure that every burger dish cooked in your kitchen is accurately cooked and that high food safety standards are achieved. 

In addition to the benefits of using a burger temp chart, food handlers must also be aware of the responsibility of informing customers about the risks of consuming undercooked meat. Use our consumer advisory template at FoodDocs so you can easily relay the message without forgetting and clearly.

 

How to create a burger temp chart?

A burger temp chart can become your best defense against causing food safety issues to customers who order a perfect burger. To make your burger temp chart effective, it must be based on facts, clear, and must consider updated information. Food handlers will use the burger temp chart to guide them in ensuring food safety and quality, and therefore, it must be made precise and accurate.

Here are a few pointers that you need to consider when making a burger temp chart:

  • Based on established information. Because food safety is at risk when a burger dish is cooked incorrectly, the information that you put on your personalized burger temp chart must be based on established information, peer-reviewed resources, and food safety regulations. Information from such resources is verified and will ensure food safety when followed. This also goes for making a chart with grill time suggestions.
  • Clear and distinct. Since the degree of doneness for cooking a burger can be significantly affected even with a few degrees off of the target, you have to ensure that the information is presented clearly and are distinguishable even from afar. When the information is confusing, food handlers may use the wrong target safe temperature.
  • Updated. Food safety researchers always strive to find more efficient ways to process food. Sometimes, they update established information when proven that the new parameters would be more efficient without sacrificing effectiveness. Make sure to check whether the gathered information is up to date or if there are new amendments to food safety regulations.

Making a burger temp chart can take a lot of your time or other resources. Why not use our free burger temp chart from FoodDocs? This chart was prepared by considering all of the mentioned factors and is ensured to fulfill its intended objective. Additionally, you can also get other charts, posters, checklists, and other templates for food safety forms from our HACCP plan template hub. All food safety tools presented in our template hub are completely free.

Food Safety Management System

How to help my team when ensuring safe food for our customers?

In a restaurant setup, employees are required to familiarize themselves with proper handling practices such as accurate cooking. This operation also involves monitoring and logging the information consistently. These records will serve as proof that your team abides by a strict food safety management system. All of these operations would have to be done repetitively within a working day. Not to mention that the information may be confusing as every type of ingredient requires different parameters for safe cooking. Delivering safe foods with consistently high quality can become a tedious job and can be hard for some.

At FoodDocs, our team of professionals understands how important food safety compliance is for any establishment. That is why we came up with our digital Food Safety Management System that can intuitively handle and increase the efficiency of your monitoring tasks. Our system can significantly cut the time your team spends on doing repetitive information logging on your paper-based monitoring forms. With smart digital monitoring forms from FoodDocs, you can save time as our system can automatically prefill the forms for you. In addition, our system will send notifications to remind food handlers of food safety tasks.

One of the many great things about our system is that you do not need to be tech-savvy just to get the results you want. In just 15 minutes, our system can automatically generate a digital FSMS for you, based specifically on your business.

By just answering a few common questions regarding the nature of your food business, our system can compile information and generate a comprehensive FSMS for you. Included in this digital FSMS are the following:

  • Automatically generated digital monitoring forms based on your everyday process. These monitoring forms are equipped with an auto-fill feature that allows our system to prefill the forms based on your previously logged information. Cut the repetitive tasks and speed up the process by only requiring your employees to verify the information.
  • A smart notification system. Using our mobile application, our system will send intuitive notification alerts to assigned employees regarding a task that needs to be done. This feature ensures that all food safety tasks are done on time.
  • A real-time dashboard. Review your entire food safety operations using this dashboard and save at least 20% of your time supervising your team. Use this feature to identify which areas of your operation need more attention and improvement. 
  • Cloud storage where you can store and organize all of your digital documents. Save up on space and become more sustainable with digital monitoring forms and a digital space for storage. 

With our digital FSMS, food safety compliance can be a breeze and a fun task to do. You would never have to worry whether a task is fulfilled or not as our system will always remind you. You will also not need to spend so much time building an accurate and comprehensive FSMS as our system can do it significantly faster than the traditional method. You can even create your FSMS while waiting in line at a grocery store!

Because our team understands how every food business can have unique operations, our system allows customizations to improve the digital FSMS without any hassle. Your typical traditional FSMS would require you to produce several monitoring forms and use up so much space. Using a digital FSMS is also a great movement toward sustainability. With our system, you can significantly cut your use of paper and make every monitoring task digital.

Find out more about our system features by experiencing them yourself. Join our list of more than 20,000 food businesses that are enjoying compliance with our help. Try our free, 14-day trial and experience how we can help you maintain compliance effortlessly.

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