SAFE COOKING TEMPERATURES
This table lists the suggested oven temperatures depending on your desired results. If you are braising an item, its best to keep the oven temp to Slow or Very Slow. This will make sure a very tender product. However, if you want a good crust and sear on a beef tenderloin, its best to start the oven very hot, then reduce to moderate or hot to finish it off.
|Very Slow||250 – 275||121 – 135|
|Slow||300 – 325||149 – 163|
|Moderate||350 – 375||177 – 191|
|Hot||400 – 425||204 – 218|
|Very Hot||450 – 475||232 – 246|
|Extremely Hot||500 – 525||260 – 274|
Microwave power does vary by brand, model, age, etc.. of the appliance. To be successful at cooking, defrosting or reheating in the microwave, its important to know the power your appliance produces. Once you have that, use the table below to re-adjust the power and time settings for your recipe, defrost or re-heating times.
|650 – 850 Watts||As per recipe|
|850 – 1000 Watts||35% less|
|1000 – 13000 Watts||45% less|
|1300 – 1625 Watts||50% less|
High Altitude Considerations
I have always lived and cooked in low-level areas. High altitude was never something I had to consider when cooking. I do recognize, that there are many areas where people love to cook, but may not know how to adjust cooking temperatures and times to compensate for the changes in air pressure.
All recipes on this website use standard temperatures and cooking times as found in the majority of cookbooks and recipes. If you try a recipe on this site and adjust it for any reason and it turns out great, please contact me and I will add the change as an option for that recipe.
- Boiling Point of liquid and oil is lower. Vegetables and eggs take longer to cook
- Cooking Liquid evaporates faster. Use 10% – 25% more liquid.
- Flour is dryer and absorbs more liquid. Use smallest amount, up to ½ cup less.
- Braised meats can take up to twice as long to cook, as there is less pressure to force steam into the meat. Increase heat slightly. Add more liquid.
- Yeast breads will rise quicker.
- Baking powder is more efficient. Use a scant less or increase cooking temp by 20 – 30 degrees.
Safe Cooking Temperatures
Keep in mind, that when you remove the meat item from the oven, it will still continue to cook. This is called Carry-over cooking. If you remove the item when it reaches your desired temperature, by the time you serve it, it will have continued to cook and then may become over done for your tastes. It’s a good idea to remove the meat from the oven before it reaches the desired temperature. On average, the meat will continue cooking an extra 5 degrees after its removed from the heat source.
All meat should rest for 5 – 10 minutes after removing from heat. This will allow the juices to redistribute before slicing. If you slice the meat as soon as it is removed from heat, you will lose all of those yummy precious juices. This rest time will make sure the meat is at the proper temperature at serving time.
|Meat Type||Temp of Meat Desired at Center at serving||Temp of Meat at Center when to remove from Heat Source Guideline||Doneness|
- Typical Cuts to braise are pork, lamb chops, chicken breasts, chicken thighs, beef or pork ribs, beef pot roasts (chuck, blade, arm or round).
- Common Liquids to add are good stock/broth, wine, fruit or vegetable juices, or just plain water. Additional liquid may be needed during longer cooking times.
- Large (4+ lb.) whole pieces of meat, add about 20% to total time.
- The table below contains cooking times in hours after the meat has already been browned. If you do not brown the item first, you may have to up the cooking time.
|Weight in LBS||Whole||Chunks|
- This information will help you to create delicious roasts to impress even the more finicky eater.
- Cooking Times for beef are calculated at the listed oven temperature.
- Allow larger pieces of beef and port to come to room temperature (30 – 60 minutes) before placing in the preheated oven. This will give more even cooking to the center without over-browning.
- Remove meats from oven about 5 degrees before desired internal meat temperature is reached.
- An after-oven rest time of 15 – 30 minutes is included in listed total times.
- All times show MEDIUM doneness for beef and SAFE, well-done temperatures for all others. For the beef, subtract about 5 minutes per pound for rare; add 5 minutes per pound for well-done
- Use internal thermometer for actual doneness.
- Cooking times are in hours
- Choose meats with a fat covering, or coat liberally with choice of oil or butter to keep internal moisture and enhance browning.
- Do not salt. Salt causes moisture to leave the meat. A light sugar-coating promotes browning. I am not sure I agree with this recommendation.
- Higher than listed oven temperatures promote over-browning and cause uneven roasting, such as rare center and too-well-done exterior. Alternative: start roasting in a pre-heated oven, 100 degrees above listed time (to brown and seal), then reduce heat after 15 or 20 minutes. Total roasting time will be reduced slightly.
- Bone-in meats roast slightly faster because the bone conducts heat to the interior.
- Dashes (-) show size/weight not available.
|Weight||Beef Rib Bone-in 325||Beef Rib Boneless 325||Beef Rib Eye 350|
|2 LB||¾||1 ¼||1|
|3 LB||1||1 ¾||1 ½|
|4 LB||1 ½||2||2|
|5 LB||2||2 ½||2 ¼|
|6 LB||2 ¾||3||–|
|7 LB||3 ½||3 ¾||–|
|8 LB||4 ¼||4 ½