Meat Cooking Guide

The most accurate way to tell when meats are done cooking is to use an instant-read thermometer. The thermometer should be inserted through the side of the meat into the thickest part, not touching bone or fat.


Remove your steaks or burgers from heat when the instant-read thermometer is 5°F lower than the desired temperature. Let the beef rest for a few minutes; carryover cooking will occur and raise the internal temperature about 5°F.

Rare Cool red center 125°F
Medium Rare Warm red center 135°F
Medium Warm pink center 145°F
Medium Well Slightly pink center 150°F
Well Done Little or no pink 160°F

The USDA recommends steaks and roasts be cooked to 145°F (medium) and then rested for at least 3 minutes. To ensure food safety, ground beef should be cooked to a minimum of 160°F.


Cooking temperatures for your pork loin, tenderloin and pork chops should reach 145 – 160°F, followed by a 3-minute rest. Precooked ham can be reheated to 140°F or even enjoyed cold.

The USDA recommends145°F, with a 3-minute rest, for most types of pork and 160°F for ground pork.