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Chicken can sometimes have bad bacteria like salmonella and this can make you or your customers sick. Always handle your chicken as if it has bacteria on it.


During cooking, your chicken can get smaller and this is because of IQF which is the injection of brine into the chicken.

In 2016 government made a legal cut in IQF percentages from 30% to 15% for IQF portions, and 10% on whole chickens. IQF gives frozen chicken a heavier weight that gets much smaller when cooked and this means that buying affordable IQF chicken may not actually be cheaper for your deli.

  • During cooking, your chicken will get smaller. When this happens, you will have less meat than you were expecting.
  • If you are planning on serving a 200 g cut of chicken, you will need to cook a bigger cut to ensure that you have 200 g after it is cooked.

Here’s an example:


  • If chicken is leaking from the packaging, take it out and put it in a clean container so that it does not contaminate other food.
  • Cover it with plastic wrap and label it with a description and date.


  • Parts of the chicken look different when cooked.
  • Raw chicken is pale pink and when cooked, it can be beige or cream-white.
  • Cook it properly and it will be tender, juicy and delicious.
  • Dark meat is tender and full of flavour.
  • White meat has less tastiness, it is more dry and the more you overcook it, the harder it is to eat.
  • Most of the fat is on the skin.


  • Prevent contamination by cooking chicken properly.
  • To check temperature on the inside, use a meat thermometer. If you don't have one, use a knife to prick the chicken.
  • If the juice is pink, then the meat is not cooked, and if the juice is clear, it is cooked and ready.
  • If you are cooking a chicken that has been stuffed, check it is ready by checking that the stuffing is cooked.
  • Stuff the chicken just before cooking and take out the stuffing straight after the chicken is done.
  • To stop bacteria growing, you can cook the stuffing outside of the chicken.
  • Never cook chicken halfway and store it away to cook at another time. If you do this, you risk contaminating the chicken.


Raw chicken is an easy target for salmonella, but if your kitchen and cooking equipment are clean, you won't risk contamination.

  1. Wash all equipment and counters with hot, soapy water.
  2. Wash your hands properly before and after touching raw chicken.
  3. Your work area, utensils and cutting boards should not be used for other foods until they are cleaned and sanitised with a trusted sanitiser. This will help you to prevent cross-contamination.
  4. When working with other foods while working with chicken, use different utensils.
  5. Use yellow cutting boards for raw poultry and brown cutting boards for cooked poultry.