Food Safety

Cooking Times and Doneness*

Avoid using color as a marker of doneness. Use the following cooking temperatures and tips for ideal taste and food safety.


  • For 1/2 inch or thicker, cook to 145°F for medium rare, 160°F for medium, and 170°F for well done.
  • After cooking, let steaks rest before serving.
  • Use a thermometer and insert horizontally for the best reading.

Ground Beef

  • Ground Beef should always be cooked to 160ºF to prevent foodborne illness and for a savory flavor.
  • Insert a thermometer into the center of the thickest part of the meat for an accurate reading.

Learn more.

Chef seasoning Natural Beef

Tips for Preparing Natural Beef

Use these tips to bring out optimal flavor:

  • Before cooking, pat dry with paper towels for better browning.
  • Partially freeze steaks for about 30 minutes for easier slicing if stir-frying.
  • If roasting or broiling, place steaks or roasts on a rack in a roasting or broiler pan. This helps fat to drip away during cooking.
  • If grilling kabobs, cut steak into uniform pieces to ensure even cooking.

Learn more.

Steak in a skillet with a meat thermometer

Storing Beef Properly*


  • Wait to pick up beef until right before checking out.
  • Consider storing beef in a cooler if it will take more than 30 minutes to get home.

At Home

  • Refrigerate or freeze as soon as possible.
  • Place on the lowest shelf of the refrigerator on a plate or tray.
  • Package into portions if you plan to freeze.
  • Use heavy-duty aluminum foil or plastic freezer bags for longer storage times.
  • Refrigerate leftovers within 2 hours after cooking.
Grocery Beef in a market

Handling Beef for Food Safety*

Avoid cross-contamination and prevent foodborne illness, with the following steps:

  • Wash your hands well in hot, soapy water before and after handling raw beef and other foods.
  • Keep raw beef and juices away from other foods.
  • Wash all utensils, cutting surfaces, and counters with hot, soapy water, especially after contact with raw 
  • Keep cutting boards separate from other food preparation materials.
Smoked Steak

Our Commitment to Food Safety

We have taken an aggressive and innovative position within the industry as it relates to food safety. Our focus is and has always been to provide wholesome, safe products.

Strict Standards. Quality Results.

We work closely with government regulatory agencies, members of the U.S. beef industry, consumers, the scientific community, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to monitor our processes. We are committed to producing the most wholesome protein products with the highest quality standards. Our food safety efforts focus on prevention of any contamination from start to finish in the protein production cycle. We are diligent to ensure we deliver wholesome protein products consumers can trust.

Learn More about the Cedar River Farms Advantage

Our Beef
Raw Natural Beef Steak on Cutting Board

*from Beef. It’s What’s for Dinner.