Grill safety important for Memorial Day and beyond

Make sure to avoid these common grilling mistakes to ensure a successful Memorial Day cookout. (Ben Sutherland/Flickr Commons CC BY 2.0)

BOARDMAN, Ohio (WKBN) – Use caution when lighting the grill for the first time this season.

“Just make sure your igniter is working properly in your grill because those igniters have batteries in them that have to be replaced. And if you don’t replace that battery, the gas can be pouring out, and it could blow up in your face,” said Nick Mileto, chef at the Springfield Grille.

The first step to food safety is preparing the meat before throwing it on the grill.

“For, like, steak and chicken, you’re going to want to rub it with a little olive oil, your favorite season salt, maybe some fresh herbs,” Mileto said.

For burgers, no oil is needed.

“Typically, a beef burger will have enough fat in it so you won’t need any oil or olive oil in it when you cook it,” Mileto said.

Before heading to the grill, ditch the plastic utensils.

“Always use metal on the grill, and you also want to have tongs to flip your chick and things like that,” Mileto said.

Do not forget the meat thermometer. The right temperature prevents illness.

The internal temperature of a piece of chicken should be 165 degrees. For burgers, the internal temperature is all about preference but should be at least 140 degrees.

For side dishes, macaroni or pasta salad are perfect for picnics. Be careful with the ingredients.

“Mayonnaise has egg in it, and some people put egg in their potato or pasta salad, so you definitely have to keep that chilled because it could make someone ill,” Mileto said.

Putting the salads in ice is a good idea because it only takes an hour of sitting in the sun for it to make someone sick.

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