NATIONAL NEWS

How to defend against food poisoning at your Super Bowl party

Feb 10, 2024, 2:59 PM

FILE - Party chicken wings with cilantro sour cream dip and honey sriracha are displayed in Concord...

FILE - Party chicken wings with cilantro sour cream dip and honey sriracha are displayed in Concord, N.H., on Nov. 16, 2015. Preparing and keeping foods at the right temperature, avoiding cross contamination -- no double dipping! -- and being mindful about leaving out perishable snacks like chicken wings, meatballs and veggie platters are all keys to avoiding illness at your Super Bowl party, health experts said. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead, File)

(AP Photo/Matthew Mead, File)

LAS VEGAS (AP) — When Americans gather to watch the Super Bowl on Sunday, the culinary choices may be as important as the final score.

Because the event can stretch for more than four hours, that raises the risks of foodborne illness if party hosts and guests aren’t careful.

Preparing and keeping foods at the right temperature, avoiding cross contamination — no double-dipping! — and being mindful about leaving out perishable snacks like chicken wings, meatballs and veggie platters are all keys to keep people from getting sick, health experts said.

Here’s a game plan to party safely:

Check for recalls

Many items that could wind up on a Super Bowl spread have been recalled this week after a deadly outbreak of listeria food poisoning.

Check your refrigerator for bean dips, enchiladas, soft cheeses, sour cream and taco kits produced by Rizo Lopez Foods — some were sold at Costco, Trader Joe’s and Albertson’s.

For the full list of recalled foods, see the U.S. Food and Drug Administration website.

Know your bugs

Foodborne illness can be caused by a range of harmful bacteria, including listeria, salmonella, E. coli and others.

In small amounts, the contamination may not be harmful. Problems occur when foods that harbor the bacteria remain at room temperature for too long, allowing the bugs to multiply to potentially dangerous levels, said Joanne Slavin, a professor of food science and nutrition at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities.

By the fourth quarter, the bacteria may be winning, she said: “People are eating things that have been sitting out for a while.”

In general, perishable foods like chicken wings, deli wraps, meatballs and even fresh vegetables and fruit should be left out for no more than two hours, the U.S. Department of Agriculture advises.

Put out small amounts of food and replenish the platters frequently.

Think temperature, not vibes

One major way to avoid illness: Prepare and serve all foods — takeout or home-cooked — at the proper temperature.

“To me, it’s about keeping cold food cold and hot food hot,” Slavin said.

Use a food thermometer to make sure that meats are cooked to proper temperatures, including 145 degrees Fahrenheit for whole meat, 160 F for poultry and 165 F for leftovers and casseroles.

Bacteria multiply rapidly between 40 degrees F and 140 F. Keep cold foods in the fridge until just before serving or nestle the food in ice. Keep hot foods at 140 F or above by using a preheated oven, warming trays, chafing dishes or slow cookers, the USDA said.

No hygiene Hail Mary

In the excitement of a close game, it can be easy to skip simple steps. But it’s important to remember some fundamental rules.

1. Wash your hands for 20 seconds before and after handling raw meat and poultry.

2. Clean all surfaces and utensils with soap and warm water before and after contact with raw meat, and sanitize surfaces with a commercial or homemade solution that contains bleach.

3. Use separate cutting boards, plates and utensils for raw meat and poultry and ready-to-eat foods.

4. Be aware of cross contamination when snacking. “Double-dipping? Now that does bother me,” Slavin said. Solution: Spoon a small amount of dip onto a plate so you don’t contaminate the whole batch with your saliva or germs from your hands.

KSL 5 TV Live

National News

FILE: The University of Wyoming campus sign with the Wyoming Union in the background Friday March 2...

Mead Gruver

Highway crash in Colorado kills three University of Wyoming swimmers

A single-vehicle wreck on a highway in northern Colorado killed three members of the University of Wyoming swimming and diving team.

3 hours ago

This image released by the U.S. Department of Justice in an FBI affidavit filed in U.S. District Co...

Denise Lavoie and Matthew Barakat, Associated Press

4 charged in transporting suspected Iranian-made weapons. Two SEALs died in intercepting the ship

Four foreign nationals have been charged with transporting suspected Iranian-made weapons after U.S. naval forces interdicted a vessel in the Arabian Sea last month.

17 hours ago

This image provided by the Denver Police Department shows Miles Harford. Denver police are asking f...

Associated Press

Denver police search a former funeral home owner who kept the cremated remains of at least 30 people

Denver police are asking for the public's help in finding a former funeral home owner who they say kept a woman's body in a hearse for two years and also kept the cremated remains of at least 30 people.

19 hours ago

FILE - President Joe Biden's dog Commander looks out from the balcony during a pardoning ceremony f...

Camila DeChalus and Betsy Klein, CNN

Bidens’ dog, Commander, bit Secret Service personnel in at least 24 incidents, records show

The new 24 incidents do not include the other incidents that were previously reported involving executive residence staff and other White House workers.

20 hours ago

A humpback whale breaches near Bering Island off Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula. The unique structure...

Amarachi Orie, CNN

Mystery of whale song unraveled by scientists, study says

Whale songs are one of the most mysterious sounds to have been heard reverberating through the ocean.

20 hours ago

A person looking at the NVIDIA Grace Hopper superchip...

Nicole Goodkind, CNN

S&P 500 and Dow hit new highs as Nvidia fervor takes hold of Wall Street

Stocks soared to new highs on Thursday after Nvidia, the third largest company on Wall Street, blew past earnings expectations and bolstered investor optimism on Wall Street.

21 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

Users display warnings about the use of artificial intelligence (AI), access to malicious software ...

Les Olson

How to Stay Safe from Cybersecurity Threats

Read our tips for reading for how to respond to rising cybersecurity threats in 2023 and beyond to keep yourself and your company safe.

How to defend against food poisoning at your Super Bowl party