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Safe Cooking Temperatures: Beef

posted in Meat, Poultry and Seafood, Reference Charts by Kathy Maister

The following is from the United States Department of Agriculture:

For safety, the USDA recommends cooking hamburgers and ground beef mixtures such as meat loaf to 160°F (70°C) on a meat thermometer. However, “whole muscle” meats such as steaks and roasts may be cooked to approximately

  • 145 °F (60° C) medium rare
  • 160 °F (70° C) medium
  • 175 °F (75° C) well done

For approximate cooking times for use in meal planning, see the following chart compiled from various resources. Cooking times are based on starting with beef at refrigerator temperature (40 °F). Remember that appliances and outdoor grills can vary in heat. Use a meat thermometer to check for safe cooking and “doneness” of beef. eric.jpg

Cow Drawing Source: Wikipedia

Approximate Beef Cooking Times

Type of Beef


Cooking Method

Cooking Time

Internal Temperature

Rib Roast, bone in

4 to 6 lbs.

Roast 325° F (165° C)

23-25 min./lb.

Medium rare 145°F (60°C)

Rib Roast, boneless rolled

4 to 6 lbs.

Roast 325°F (165°C)

Add 5-8 min./lb. to times above

Same as above

Chuck Roast, Brisket

3 to 4 lbs.

*Braise 325°F (165°C)

*Braise 325°F (165°C)

Medium 160° F (70°C)

Round or Rump Roast

2 1/2 to 4 lbs.

Roast 325°F (165°C)

30-35 min./lb.

Medium rare 145°F (60°C)

Tenderloin, whole

4 to 6 lbs.

Roast 425°

45-60 min. total

Medium rare 145°F (60°C)


3/4″ thick


4-5 min. per side

Medium rare 145°F (60°C)

Stew or Shank Cross Cuts

1 to 1 1/2″ thick

Cover with liquid; simmer

2 to 3 hours

Medium 160°F (70°C)

Short Ribs

4″ long and 2″ thick

*Braise 325°F (165°C)

1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours

Medium 160°F (70°C)

*Braising is roasting or simmering less-tender meats with a small amount of liquid in a tightly covered pan.

Source: USDA Last modified – February 2003

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