Searing vs. Cooking Meat

Q: Why is it safe to simply sear the outside of whole muscle cuts of meat, as opposed to cooking ground meats to higher temperatures?

A: Bacteria  are usually concentrated on the outside surfaces of whole muscle cuts of meats such as steaks, roasts, chops. Cooking these foods to 145˚ F kills bacteria to safe levels.  Because grinding meats essentially distributes bacteria throughout the product, it is necessary to cook these products to higher internal temperatures, 155˚ F for safe eating.

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