The Rules of Separation at the Grill

Nutrition & fitness / Sanitas Medical Center

The Rules of Separation at the Grill

Rule #1: Always Start with a Clean Grill 

Rule #2: Use Separate Plates for Uncooked and Cooked Foods 

Do not put cooked foods back on plates that originally held raw foods! Always wash plates or serving trays in hot soapy water between uses or, better yet, use separate plates: one for bringing raw meat, poultry and seafood to the grill and another for taking cooked foods off the grill. 

Rule #3: Clean Utensils or Use Separate Utensils as You Grill 

After using tongs or spatulas to put raw meats, seafood or poultry on the grill, clean them thoroughly with hot soapy water before using them again to remove cooked foods. Or, use two sets of utensils: one for raw meats and the other set for cooked foods. 

Rule #4: Marinate Mindfully – Before, During and After Grilling 

Reusing marinade that was on raw meats, seafood or poultry for cooked foods may be risky.  Plan ahead and make extra marinade. 

Use part to marinate the raw food; set aside a clean portion to use on cooked foods. Also, never use the same brush to baste both raw and cooked meats with the marinade.  

Rule #5: Leave the Dishtowels in the Kitchen 

Using the same dishtowel multiple times to wipe your hands and clean up spills at the grill can spread bacteria. Instead, prevent cross-contamination by using paper towels or disposable wipes to clean spills when grilling. Save the dishtowels for drying your clean hands and dishes. 


Food safety to prevent food poisoning is crucial and not just in the kitchen — the same rules apply at the grill, especially when it comes to preventing cross-contamination. 

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