Internal Temperature Chart For Meat And Why To Use It

meat temperature chart

It is extremely important to cook your meat to the right internal temperature. later I will tell you why but here is a meat internal temperature chart that you use as a reference of for you to download.

Why Must Meat Be Cooked To Its Minimum Internal Temperature?

Meat contains many nutrients that you need and most of them will benefit your health.

However, because of their nature and where they come from meat also is a place where harmful bacteria feel at home.

These bacteria can cause very serious diseases and even cause death.

Bacteria In Meat

There are many more but here is a short list of bacteria in meat that can cause foodborne illnesses.

  • Salmonella
  • E. Coli
  • Listeria monocytogenes
  • Campylobacter
  • Yersinia

Many of them I had never heard of but it seems that they all can live in the meat that we bought.

All these types of bacteria have their own environment that they like and in which they grow and multiply the fastest.

“That means that cooking meat you must reach at least the internal temperature that kills these bacteria.”

General Safe Internal Temperature

Cooking any type of meat to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit (74 degrees Celcius) is considered the temperature at that all bacteria will be killed.

Although there are some general rules about the internal temperatures to cook meat it is also important to know the temperatures for specific meats.

Internal Safe Temperature For Specific Meats

If you cook everything to 165°F (74°C) internal some meat will not taste good. They can be tough or dry which is why you need this recommended list for the following meats.


The safe internal temperature for beef is 145 degrees Fahrenheit (63 degrees Celcius).


The safe internal temperature for fish is 145 degrees Fahrenheit (63 degrees Celcius).


The safe internal temperature for pork is 145 degrees Fahrenheit (63 degrees Celcius).


The safe internal temperature for venison is 145 degrees Fahrenheit (63 degrees Celcius).

Temperatures For Meat Doneness

In general, you can use these temperatures for beef, pork, veal, and wild.


160 degrees Fahrenheit (71 degrees Celcius)

Well Done

170 degrees Fahrenheit (77 degrees Celcius)

How To Check The Internal Temperature

The easiest way to check the internal temperature of anything you cook and be sure it is correct is to use a thermometer.

You can have a look at the thermometers on my grill thermometer reviews page.

All you have to do is insert the probe in the thickest part of the meat without touching the bone to read the internal temperature.

Remember that meat will keep cooking and the temperature will rise a little after you take it off the grill.

Let it rest for a minimum of 5 – 10 minutes before slicing or serving. A best practice is to use the resting time in the recipe you are following.

For things such as fish, it is almost impossible to use a thermometer. For them, you can have a look at the color.

When the flesh on fish looks a little pearly white or opaque you can assume it is cooked to the right temperature.

For shellfish such as mussels, clamps, and oysters you need to wait till the shell opens up before eating them.

My best tip is to use a digital handheld thermometer for smaller cuts of meat and use a digital probe thermometer on your grill or smoker to monitor the internal temperature while cooking.

Thank you for reading this article about the internal meat temperatures and feel free to download the chart to your computer.

Eddie van Aken

Eddie van Aken has years of experience in running his full-service restaurant and with this came working with using and dealing with all types of kitchen equipment. With his experience, he can find all the pros and cons of grills and add them to the grill reviews and the outdoor cooking tips he is writing about. You can read more on the About page for Eddie van Aken

Some sources I used for this information

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