Is Washing Chicken Before Cooking a Good Idea?


Why You Shouldn’t Wash Raw Chicken

As with uncooked eggs, raw hen can comprise salmonella and different disease-causing germs. So do you have to wash hen earlier than cooking it?

For years, specialists have urged warning and good hygiene practices when dealing with uncooked items of the chicken. Many folks thought they had been doing exactly that by washing their hen earlier than cooking. Then, in 2019, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stated they had been doing the precise reverse.

Should You Wash Chicken?

“Unless you want to spread germs around your kitchen that can make you sick, never wash raw chicken,” says Samantha Thoms, MPH, RDN, a registered dietitian within the Center of Health Advocacy and Wellness at Florida State University. “You will kill the bacteria on the chicken once you cook it thoroughly to at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit.”

The CDC additionally recommends:

  • Using a separate chopping board for uncooked hen
  • Never resting cooked meals or recent produce on surfaces that beforehand held uncooked hen
  • Washing your arms with heat, soapy water for 20 seconds earlier than and after dealing with hen

Why Does Washing Chicken Spread Bacteria?

Image of Chicken Being Washed in Sink | Washing Chicken

“Chicken is known to carry illness-causing germs like salmonella and campylobacter,” says Thoms. “When you wash chicken, contaminated water can splash on your faucet, the counter, your cooking utensils, and even your clothes. This increases the odds of spreading the germs around your kitchen and making you ill. This is especially true for those with weaker immune systems, such as young children, seniors, pregnant women, and those with chronic medical conditions.”

Pin Image with BODi logo of Chicken Getting Washed | Washing Chicken


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