Instant read meat thermometers are thermometers that give you nearly instantly the internal temperature of meat that is being cooked.
Insert an instant read thermometer 5 to 8 cm (about 2 to 3 inches) into the meat, and leave there for about 20 seconds or until the dial stops moving.
After you have used a meat thermometer to check meat that wasn’t cooked, treat the thermometer as contaminated and wash it before re-inserting it in the meat. Otherwise, when the meat is safely cooked and you put the thermometer in, you could be re-introducing contamination.
Some instant read thermometers are two pieces — one is a skewer for making a hole, and the other piece is the mercury thermometer that you insert into the hole to get a reading.
Insert a meat thermometer into the deepest part of the meat, without inserting into fat or touching a bone (as both will give you a temperature higher than the rest of the meat actually is). If you’re doing thin food, such as sausages or hamburger patties, then come in at them sideways in through the side.
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) says 1 in 4 hamburgers is brown in the middle before it is actually safe to eat.