Temperature probe inserted into a shoulder of lamb on the Traeger grill

What Temperatures Do I Cook My Food To On The BBQ Or Alfa Wood Fired Oven?

Invest in a digital read thermometer for perfect results every time

Temperature probe inserted into a shoulder of lamb on the Traeger grill (pictured above)

The key to achieving that perfect steak or roast chicken is all in the temperature. If you’re like me and always brought up to cook food properly to avoid the dreaded salmonella then you will be used to cooking your chicken until it’s dry and tasteless ‘just to be on the safe side’. Buying a Weber digital read thermometer has changed the way I cook, they’re not only for the BBQ, I use it all the time in the kitchen. My chicken is now cooked in half the time, is cooked properly, it’s succulent and surprise, surprise tastes of chicken. Just remember the slogan ’75 staying alive’.

The latest thing in digital thermometers is the ingenious Weber iGrill which pairs up to your smartphone or tablet. You set the desired temperature for the food you are cooking and it will send you a text alerting you when the food is 5C off the end of the cook. If you cook for a number of people and have several pieces of meat on the grill you can monitor the temperatures of up to 4 pieces of meat at the same time. So no more standing by the BBQ waiting for the food to cook; you can even use the BBQ in the winter and monitor your food from the comfort of the house.

Weber iGrill temperature probe

Cooking temperatures

Beef

  • Blue; 38C (100F)
  • Rare; 49C (120F)
  • Medium rare; 57C (135F)
  • Medium; 63C (145F)
  • Medium well; 68C (155F)
  • Well; 71C (160F)
  • Brisket (pulled); 95C (205F)
  • Burgers; 75C (167F)

If you make your own burgers from fresh meat and use high welfare beef with good provenance then you can cook them to rare if you cook them straight away.

Pork chops with apple slaw and goat's cheese and rocket salad

Pork chops with apple slaw and goat's cheese and rocket salad

Pork

  • Pulled; 95C (205F)
  • Chops and joints; 75C (167F)
  • Burgers; 75C (167F)
  • Sausages; 75C (167F)
  • Ham; 75C (167F)

If you use high welfare pork from a small local producer you can cook it pink to 63C (145F). If you don’t know the provenance or if it comes from a large commercial producer cook it to 75C.

Lamb

  • Rare; 46C (115F)
  • Medium rare; 52C (125F)
  • Medium; 57C (135F)
  • Medium well; 66C (150F)
  • Well; 71C (160F)
  • Burgers; 75C (167F)

Spatchcock chicken cooked on the Weber Genesis II

Spatchcock chicken cooked on the Weber Genesis II

Poultry (chicken & turkey)

  • Safe cooking temp; 75c (167F)

Prawns with chilli, garlic and lime cooked on the Weber Genesis II

Prawns with chilli, garlic and lime cooked on the Weber Genesis II

Fish

  • Scallops; 49C (120F)
  • Lobster & crabs; 63C (145F)
  • White fish & salmon; 63C (145F)
  • Tuna, pink; 52C (125F)
  • Prawns; take them off the heat as soon as they turn pink, if you leave them any longer they will become tough.
  • Mussels, cockles, oysters, clams; take them off when the shells are fully open.

Eggs

  • Quiche; 74C (165F) – 85C (185F) depending upon how firm you like it set

For more information, hints and tips on making the most of your outdoor space just click the link to read the blog: 'How to use a smoker and why do I need one?', 'Get that authenic BBQ smokiness with chips, chunks and pellets' and 'How to test drive a Weber BBQ'.

Angela Slater
Daughter of a farmer and market gardener so have always had a connection with the outdoors, whether it was keeping animals or producing fruit, vegetables and cut flowers. Along with my work at Hayes Garden World I also have a smallholding, mainly breeding rare breed pigs. I gained an HND and BSc in Conservation and Environmental Land Management, as a result I am an ardent environmentalist and have a keen interest in environmentally friendly gardening. In my time at Hayes I worked for several years in the Outdoor Plant and Houseplant areas