Cooking Chicken

Do I need to use a thermometer when I’m cooking chicken?
The best way to tell if your chicken is done is to determine the internal temperature using a digital meat thermometer. Digital thermometers measure the temperature reading at the tip of the thermometer probe, so they work well for both thick and thin cuts of chicken.

The main types of meat thermometers are oven-going and instant-read. Within those categories there are digital and analog thermometers. Oven-going thermometers are go are inserted into the meat in the oven and remain there until the meat is cooked, while instant-read thermometers are used after cooking to check for doneness.

Regardless of the type of thermometer you use, insert it into the thickest part of the chicken meat. When using an oven-going thermometer, it’s a good idea to push it in just a little further after you take the chicken out of the oven to ensure the meat is evenly cooked.

Cook whole chicken to an internal temperature of 180°F (82°C) and chicken pieces and ground chicken to 165°F (74°C). It’s important to note that cooking times will vary depending on the cooking method (e.g. roasting, baking, grilling, sautéing).

Use this chart to ensure chicken is properly cooked:

Download our “Cooking Perfect Chicken is Easy” reference card.

For tender and juicy chicken, let it rest:
Let your chicken rest after you take it out of the oven or off the grill. Loosely cover the chicken with foil and let it sit at room temperature, so the juices can settle back into the meat.
Boneless chicken and bone-in pieces should rest 5-10 minutes.
Let a whole roast chicken rest for 15-20 minutes.

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Preparing and Cooking

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Is my chicken cooked?

Need to know how to make chicken burgers or how to stuff a chicken breast?  Check out these and many more “how-to” videos on our YouTube channel.