Which Thermometer Do I Use?

With a variety of thermocouples, thermometers, probes and other gadgets, you have to ask yourself which one you need to use in which situation. There’s pocket thermometers, meat thermometers, frothing thermometers, and refrigerator/freezer thermometers. When you consider which tool you need in your kitchen first you need to consider what you are cooking or baking, and then consider the biggest differences between the tools including displays, range of temperature, accuracy, and speed of the reading. All of these must be taken into consideration when you’re choosing your temperature control tool.
First, consider the pocket thermometer, they are typically smaller in size as well as quick and easy to use. Most of them are like the Taylor Tru-Temp Digital Pocket Thermomemter. This one has an instant-read function, a stainless steel stem and includes a range of -40°F – +302°F. The small size of these thermometers help you to get into the meat of food. Items such as chicken, steak, roast, or even sides that you want to be at an exact temperature. While this one, as it is digital, comes with an on and off switch to preserve the battery, this is not something you need to worry about with a dial thermometer. Both options, however, are acceptable and based on preference.
Next, you’ll need to consider a candy thermometer, also known as a sugar thermometer. Their name can be confusing, as you can use this thermometer for hot oil when deep frying without causing harm to it besides simply using it for baking. When used during baking, this thermometer will tell you the cooking progress of sugar. The range of temperatures typically allow on the higher spectrum, between 0°F and 400°F which is why its usable with both hot oil and sugar. The Candy thermometer that we offer features a stainless steel stem, it has a clear,easy to read dial that even tells you when the sugar is caramelized. This can handle temperatures between 100°F and 400°F.
A Frothing thermometer has it’s place when you’re making hot drinks like a latte or cappuccino. There are other uses for this, but this is the most common.Use with an espresso machine to froth and heat your milk to the exact temperature. It has a smaller range than most, with only 30°F – 220°F as you don’t want your milk colder than refrigerated temperature and higher than 220°F as it could cause serious injury to your customer. One of the most common features of a frothing thermometer is a clip, designed for holding the thermometer up within a frothing pitcher. This prevents the user from having to hold the thermometer while it is frothing, preventing injury due to the close proximity of the heat. You will mostly find these frothing thermometers like this one pictured that has a dial readout.
Freezer/Refrigerator thermometers are pretty self-descriptive. With a temperature range of between -22°F – 122°F, they are designed to handle colder temperatures than other thermometers. They are perfect for regulating temperatures in either freezers or refrigerators. Keeping your cold food at an ideal temperature is important to the cooking process. Being negligent on this part can cause illness to those who consume the food later. This type of thermometer can have either a digital or dial display for reading accurate temperatures. Some digital ones will also provide the humidity levels as well. While some commercial refrigerators or freezers have a built in thermometer, residential do not making this a great tool to keep hanging in your refrigerator or freezer.
Keeping track of temperature beyond a simple refrigerator 1-2-3-4-5-6-7 dial, or cutting into meat, is important. One of the biggest parts of food safety is temperature control of foods. Certain foods have a temperature that they should not be served below and for this reason, proper tools, like thermometers are important. By simply investing in the correct kitchen tools, you don’t have to worry about food poisoning due to poor preparation. If you have the tools, there’s a better chance that you will use them while cooking. If you need any thermometers to help you in the kitchen browse our selection of thermometers here. Or if you need more help, our customer service team would be happy to help you decide, give them a call at 1-800-458-1716.

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