❁ Cook, refrigerate or freeze ground beef soon after buying.
❁ Thaw frozen meat in the refrigerator. Allow 12 hours for 1 pound and use a container to catch liquids. Cook or re-freeze within 1 or 2 days.
❁ For faster thawing (1 pound in 1 hour), cover leakproof package with cold water; weigh it down to keep under water. Add new cold water every 30 minutes. Cook right away.
❁ Microwave thawing is safe if the meat is cooked right away.
❁ Keep raw meat away from fruits and vegetables.
❁ Wash hands with soap and water before and after touching raw meat.
❁ Use hot soapy water to wash all surfaces and utensils that touch raw meat.
❁ Meatloaf, meatballs and hamburgers are safely cooked when the inside temperature reaches 160 degrees F. Check the middle with a food thermometer.