Keep Food Safety in your Super Bowl Playbook

For many people, Super Bowl Sunday is about much more than football. It’s a day of celebration, traditions and favorite game-day snacks and treats. No matter which team you are cheering for, proper food safety practices should be in everyone’s playbook. Whether serving home-cooked food items or ordering takeout for your Super Bowl party, use this game plan for a safe and delicious gathering:

  1. Keep it clean: Before you eat or handle food, wash your hands, food prep tools and surfaces. For handwashing, use soap and warm water for 20 seconds to avoid spreading bacteria to your towels and other surfaces or foods. Cutting boards, dishes, utensils and countertops should also be washed with hot, soapy water after preparing each food item.
  2. Cook to the right temperature:  Use a food thermometer to check that foods are cooked to the right temperature, including to 165°F for chicken and 160°F for ground beef.
  3. Watch the clock: Throw out perishable food that has been sitting at room temperature for more than two hours, or one hour if it’s 90°F or warmer.
  4. Serve at the right temperature: Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. Start a game day tradition by using a food thermometer to check that foods being served to guests are not in the “Danger Zone” where dangerous bacteria can grow and multiply. This means that hot foods should be held at 140°F or above by placing in chafing dishes, preheated warming trays, or slow cookers, and cold foods should be kept at 40°F or below, which can be done by nesting serving dishes in bowls of ice.

For more information on general and Super Bowl food safety, visit the VDH Food Safety page and: