leftover food reheat

After a bountiful meal such as after the holidays, it is normal to end up with leftover food, and you’re probably thinking to yourself what a shame it would be to throw away. Reheating food was a good way of minimizing waste and expenditure, but at what point does it become dangerous?

Almost everybody will experience some sort of food poisoning every few years or so. If you have ever had a bad experience you will be used to the typical symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach cramps. But in some serious cases, it can be lethal. Studies have shown that an estimated 351,000 people die from food poisoning every year.

Food poisoning is usually caused by bacteria that have contaminated your food. One of the most notorious is the Campylobacter bacteria which is present in roughly 65% of chickens sold, and recent studies even found it on 6% of the outside packaging of chickens being sold. What makes Campylobacter so notorious is that you only need a few to become sick (ex. Salmonella you would need tens of thousands whereas Campylobacter would only take a few hundred).


The ultimate key to killing the bacteria is to use heat. It is important to cook your food all the way through, especially with chicken where the muscle tissue is loose enough that the bacteria have spread throughout the entire bird.

Before refrigerating any food, make sure to let it cool down (no more than four hours) to room temperature before putting it in the fridge. What happens when you put hot food in a refrigerator is that it raises the temperature inside the fridge and turns it into the perfect breeding ground for bugs and bacteria.


When you reheat food you will want to do it thoroughly. When using a microwave it is important to remember that microwave ovens will heat your food unevenly, leaving areas where bacteria can survive. It is important to remove the food half way through, stir it around, and finish cooking in the microwave until it is thoroughly heated.

All in all, there are many urban legends about reheating, such as you should only reheat your food once, but ultimately your goal should be the heat your leftovers thoroughly and evenly and you won’t have a problem.

#y101fm #alwaysfirst #food