• Four Steps

    How to Safely Clean Baby Bottles

    Taylor Wolfram, MS, RDN, LDN

    From first words to first steps, there are many firsts to come for your baby — but food poisoning shouldn't be one of them. Learn the basics of baby bottle safety to protect your infant. Read More

  • Four Steps

    How Clean Is Your Refrigerator?

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    Mold, bacteria and spills in the refrigerator can put you at risk for food poisoning. Maintaining a clean refrigerator can help improve the safety and quality of your foods. For the best cleaning results, always refer to your refrigerator's owner's manual, but here are a few simple refrigerator cleaning tips. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Should You Wash All Food?

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    From your hands to kitchen counters, it is important to wash. However, when it comes to food, the rules of washing are not as clear. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Spring Cleaning 101

    Taylor Wolfram, MS, RDN, LDN

    Spring cleaning is a great opportunity to give the kitchen a good food safety check and cleaning, especially refrigerators and freezers where raw meat, poultry and seafood is stored. Follow these tips for a thorough spring cleaning. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Keeping Your Produce Safe

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    Should one buy fruits or vegetables in season or out of season? At the supermarket or from the farmers' market? These are frequent questions that consumers often face when purchasing fresh produce. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Keeping Your Cooler Clean

    Karen Ansel, MS, RDN, CDN

    After a day of fun in the sun, it's easy to empty your cooler and forget about it until your next outing. But a clean, safe cooler starts before your next picnic even begins. Take good care of your cooler and you'll ensure that it's bacteria- and germ-free every time you use it. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Wash - The Basics

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    Illness-causing bacteria can survive and spread around your kitchen. Wash the right way to prevent these bacteria from spreading to your food. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Washing Leafy Greens

    Jackie Newgent, RDN, CDN

    From arugula to watercress, leafy greens are fresh, beautiful, tasty and healthful. There's one golden rule that applies to any leafy greens: Between purchasing and plating, washing them properly is key to food safety. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Dos and Don'ts of Kitchen Sponge Safety

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    Though you can't eliminate 100 percent of germs lurking in a sponge, there are several ways to dramatically reduce the risk of cross-contamination — which can lead to food poisoning — with these dos and don'ts. Read More

  • Four Steps

    How Clean Are Your Kitchen Surfaces?

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    You can find illness-causing germs all around your kitchen, from appliances and utensils to kitchen surfaces and cutting boards. For this reason, it's important to not only wash your hands, but to also clean utensils, surfaces and appliances before and after handling food in order to prevent the spread of bacteria. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Surfaces and Sponges

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    Handwashing may be rule No. 1 when it comes to keeping your family safe from food poisoning – but, if kitchen tools and surfaces aren’t clean, too, they can spread germs just as easily as your hands. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Safe Care and Washing of Cutting Boards

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    It's not just your hands that need washing before, during and after food preparation. To prevent food poisoning, it's also important to remember to wash your cutting boards. If not cleaned and maintained properly, cutting boards can hold harmful bacteria and spread food poisoning. Read More

  • Four Steps

    No Dishwasher - No Problem

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    For some students, college offers new experiences like living in a dorm and preparing their own food. However, these new experiences may come with unique challenges, such as having to hand-wash your dishes. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Hand Washing

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    Did you know that proper hand washing may eliminate a large percentage of food poisoning cases and significantly reduce the spread of the common cold and flu? Don't miss out on these potential health benefits, scrub up today keeping these tips in mind. Read More

  • Four Steps

    The Rules of Separation at the Grill

    Taylor Wolfram, MS, RDN, LDN

    During grilling season, cross-contamination, a leading cause of food poisoning, tops the list of food safety concerns. When juices from raw meats or bacteria from unclean items touch cooked or read-to-eat foods, cross-contamination can occur, spreading harmful bacteria that can make you sick. Read More

  • Four Steps

    How To Prevent Cross-contamination

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    It's common knowledge that eating raw meat can make you sick, but you may still be at risk for food poisoning if you don't properly separate your foods to prevent cross-contamination. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Reusable Grocery Tote Safety

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    Reusable cloth grocery totes are convenient and environmentally friendly, but could they be making you sick? Here's how to reduce your risk of food poisoning. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Separate - The Basics

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    Bacteria can spread through cross-contamination. This occurs when raw meat, poultry, seafood and eggs come in contact with ready-to-eat foods like bread and vegetables, so keep them separate. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Mega Meals - Food Safety in Five Steps

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    Cooking for a crowd is not the same as cooking at home. You are preparing more food for more people, which may result in an increased risk of food poisoning. When cooking and preparing food for your next group gathering, follow these important steps. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Cutting Board Safety

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    When juices from raw meats or germs from unclean objects accidentally touch cooked or ready-to-eat foods (such as fruits or salads), cross-contamination occurs. If not cleaned correctly, the board harbors harmful bacteria. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Preventing Cross-Contact at Home

    Rachel Begun, MS, RDN

    For the 15 million people with food allergies, 3 million with celiac disease and many more with other sensitivities, avoiding contact with an offending food is a big concern. Coming into contact with a miniscule amount of the offending food can cause life threatening reactions in people wtih food allergies or cause damage to the intestines of those with celiac disease. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Food Allergies, Celiac Disease and Gluten Sensitivity

    Rachel Begun, MS, RDN

    It can be quite confusing when one person avoiding gluten can't eat French fries prepared in a shared fryer, but another will take a small bite of bread pudding. The array of terminology used only adds to the confusion: allergy, intolerance, sensitivity, celiac disease. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Separate To Keep Food Safe

    Karen Ansel, MS, RDN, CDN

    Wash, separate, cook, refrigerate. It's the mantra of food safety. But how much attention do you pay to step number two? Separating is a key step in preventing food poisoning. When raw foods like meat, poultry, seafood and eggs come into contact with cooking surfaces, utensils and other foods, they can leave invisible bacteria behind, resulting in cross contamination. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Cooking Guide for High Altitudes

    Taylor Wolfram, MS, RDN, LDN

    As elevation increases, the atmospheric pressure decreases, or becomes thinner. The atmosphere becomes drier and liquids evaporate more rapidly, resulting in the need for changes in cooking methods. High altitude is defined as an elevation of 3,000 feet or more above sea level. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Cook Once, Eat Safely throughout the Week

    Ruth Frechman, MA, RDN, CPT

    After spending a long day at work, enjoying a home-cooked meal sounds appealing; however, not everyone has the time and energy to sweat over a hot stove every night. The solution is to prepare meals over the weekend and reheat them during the week. The question is, how far in advance can meals be prepared while still being safe to eat? Read More

  • Four Steps

    10 Food Safety Tips for the Slow Cooker

    Taylor Wolfram, MS, RDN, LDN

    Slow cookers are a convenient way to whip up a delicious dish with minimal effort. Just throw all of the ingredients in the pot, turn it on, head to work, come home and dinner is ready to be served. Read More

  • Four Steps

    How to Use a Food Thermometer

    Taylor Wolfram, MS, RDN, LDN

    The only way to know that food is cooked to the correct temperature and eliminate harmful bacteria that may be present is to use a food thermometer. However, a food thermometer is only helpful if you are using it properly. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Your Plate - Where the Wild Things Are

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    Recently, more game — wild animals and birds — has been making its way from the farm to your table. From elk, deer, moose, caribou and antelope to goose, pheasant and quail, the variety and availability of farm-raised game continues to grow. Adventure into the game meat territory with our quick guide for safely handling and cooking these exotic meats Read More

  • Four Steps

    Reheating Dinner

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    Between soccer practice, music lessons and other after-school activities, your children may be home late for dinner. If you're saving dinner for later, make sure you properly refrigerate and reheat the leftovers. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Is Your Food Thermometer Accurate?

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    Have you ever thought of taking your thermometer's temperature? Here's how to give your digital and non-digital food thermometer a regular check-up. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Home Canning Safety Tips

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    How do you like your vegetables? If you are among the 1 in 5 households in the United States who can their own food, then chances are you like homegrown vegetables fresh from your own canning jar. You are part of a growing segment of Americans who are returning to the "farm your own food" way of life to cut food costs and eat healthfully. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Correct Food Thermometer Placement

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    Food thermometer placement is extremely important in order to guarantee your food is cooked to a safe minimum internal temperature. The food thermometer should be placed in the thickest part of the food and should not be touching bone, fat or gristle. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Cookie Rookie Pledge

    As gooey and delicious as it might look, eating raw cookie dough could make you very sick. When handling raw cookie dough, keep these safety tips in mind. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Teaching Kids to Cook

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    The best way to teach kids about eating right is to actually get them into the kitchen to prepare healthy meals together. Cooking is a valuable life skill that teaches children about nutrition and food safety, as well as building math, science, literacy and fine motor skills. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Is It Done Yet? Safe Cooking Temperatures

    Your ultimate kitchen companion is here! The Is My Food Safe? App will help answer all of your food safety questions and reduce your risk of food poisoning. Download the app for free in the Apple or Android Store. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Food Thermometer - Essential Kitchen Tool

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    You can't tell if a food is safely cooked by sight, smell or even taste. A food thermometer is the only way to ensure food is cooked to the proper temperature and harmful bacteria are eliminated. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Complete List of Cooking Temperatures

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    Don't rely upon sight, smell or taste alone to determine if your food is safe to eat. Make sure foods are cooked to a safe minimum internal cooking temperature by using the chart below and testing the food with a food thermometer to make sure this temperature is reached. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Tips for Reheating Leftovers

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    Whether you're a leftover lover or more the take-out type, heat, eat (and repeat!) with this home food safety "dish" from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Choosing a Food Thermometer

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    Stores carry a wide variety of food thermometers, from traditional dials to even disposable varieties. Take a look at those listed below and pick which type is best for you and remember to use it every time you cook. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Cook - The Basics

    Food is safely cooked when it reaches a high enough internal temperature to kill the harmful bacteria that cause food poisoning. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Can Rare Meat Be Safe?

    Jackie Newgent, RDN, CDN

    Do you enjoy meat that is cooked until it is just rare or medium-rare? It's okay if you're not a fan of well-done meat. You don't need to give up enjoying foods prepared the way you like. But you will want to know the safest way to savor lightly cooked meat. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Packing the Perfect Cooler

    Karen Ansel, MS, RDN, CDN

    When you're planning a day outdoors, bringing a cooler can keep your food safe, fresh and tasting great for hours. However, to get maximum mileage out of your cooler — and minimize the chance of food poisoning — you have to load it properly. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Freezing 101

    Taylor Wolfram, MS, RDN, LDN

    Freezing is an effective way to make perishable items last longer. The process of freezing prevents the growth of bacteria, yeasts and molds that cause food spoilage and food poisoning. However, it is important to follow these tips to safely freeze and protect the quality of your foods. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Food Safety During Power Outages

    Taylor Wolfram, MS, RDN, LDN

    During power outages, food spoilage can be a serious problem when refrigerators and freezers lose power. Consumers can help avoid spoilage and foodborne illness in their homes by making sure foods stay properly refrigerated during a power outage. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Storage in the Cupboard

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    The cupboard is a great place to store all your shelf-stable foods, from pasta to cookies. If stored correctly, non-refrigerated foods will keep their peak quality for longer. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Leftover Safety

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    Saving leftovers to eat later is a great way to avoid overeating while also saving money. Before you reheat and eat, follow these simple steps to reduce your risk of food poisoning. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Time to Toss - A Food Storage Guide

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    Your ultimate kitchen companion is here! The Is My Food Safe? App will help answer all of your food safety questions and reduce your risk of food poisoning. Download the app for free in the Apple or Android Store. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Storage in the Fridge

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    It is easy for foods to get lost in the vast expanses of your refrigerator. To keep perishable food safe and out of the danger zone, you must wrap and store it properly for the appropriate amount of time. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Refrigerate Promptly and Properly

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    Refrigerate foods quickly and at a proper temperature to slow the growth of bacteria and prevent food poisoning. Leftover foods from a meal should not stay out of refrigeration longer than two hours. In hot weather, this time is reduced to one hour. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Maximize Food Safety in a Mini-Fridge

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    College is a busy time full of new experiences. Many students may live in a dorm and use a dorm-size "mini-fridge." Even though a mini-fridge may be small, the same food safety principles apply. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Keeping Your Lunch Safe

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    Lunches containing perishable foods should never be left out of refrigeration for more than two hours, so reduce your risk of food poisoning with these tips to keep food safe as it travels from the kitchen to the school cafeteria or office. Read More

  • Four Steps

    How to Marinate Safely

    Jackie Newgent, RDN, CDN

    Prior to grilling, roasting or sautéing, a food is soaked in a marinade to enhance flavor and potentially tenderization or juiciness. Though a marinade can transform food from humdrum to yum, if not utilized with culinary care it can lead to food safety uncertainty. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Fuel Up for After-School Activities

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    For kids with activities directly after school, chances are they'll need a boost of nutrition before they begin practice and sport activities. Be sure to choose snacks that are still safe to eat at the end of the school day. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Frozen Precooked Meats

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    To ensure proper handling, storage and preparation of frozen precooked meats, follow these food safety tips. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Does Your Refrigerator Need a Makeover?

    Karen Ansel, MS, RDN, CDN

    When it comes to keeping your food fresh and safe, your refrigerator is your best friend. If you can't remember the last time you gave your fridge a good wipe down — or it's so stuffed you can't find a thing in it — it could be time for an overhaul. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Blanch Before You Freeze

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    Freezing is a great way to preserve foods. But when it comes to vegetables, there is more to freezing than putting foods directly into the freezer because this does not destroy harmful pathogens that cause spoilage. When foods are frozen, their enzyme action is slowed, but not stopped. One solution to this problem is blanching vegetables before you freeze them. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Safe School Lunch Boxes

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    To keep the "lunch box bug" called food poisoning out of children's school lunches, follow these tips from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Refrigerator

    Eleese Cunningham, RDN

    Although the refrigerator is an essential kitchen appliance, Americans lack important knowledge on how to keep foods safe in the fridge. Learn more about proper refrigeration. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Thawing Frozen Foods

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    Thawing is primarily used for frozen meats, poultry and seafood as most vegetables can be cooked without thawing. It is important to follow these guidelines to thaw safely because bacteria can multiply rapidly when left unrefrigerated for more than two hours in the so called temperature "danger zone." Read More

  • Four Steps

    Refrigerate - The Basics

    Wendy Marcason, RDN

    Cooling foods keeps them out the "danger zone" — between 40°F and 140°F — and slows the growth of illness-causing bacteria. Refrigerate promptly and properly to reduce your risk of food poisoning. Read More

  • Four Steps

    Glass Versus Plastic Containers

    Jackie Newgent, RDN, CDN

    Some food containers are safer than others when it comes to personal and environmental health. Here's what you need to know about plastic and glass storage containers. Read More

Find an Expert

Anyone can call themselves a nutritionist, but registered dietitian nutritionists (RDN) deliver the highest level of nutrition counseling. Search our database of nutrition experts to find someone in your area!

Search Now