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Recommendation for accurate meat thermometer?

I am paranoid about chicken and fish being fully cooked when I take it out of the oven. I have the kind of thermometer that changes color but I prefer something that shows a temperature reading, and preferably something that doesn't require batteries (or, if it does, it has long-lasting batteries). I saw the ChefAlarm on Amazon but it looks really complicated. But I'll deal with that if it is accurate. Interested in any recommendations you have.

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    1. http://www.amazon.com/Taylor-1478-21-...

      We have this in plastic, and like it. Battery is over a year old and still working. Nice to be able to leave the probe in the beast without opening the door of oven. In our area they are usually on the shelf in the bigger grocery stores.

      1. There are two ways to go here in my opinion. The first is a thermometer with a probe that stays in the food while it's being cooked and has a wire lead that goes to a unit that remains outside of the oven. This type has the advantage that it constantly monitors the internal temperature of whatever you are cooking. Something like this: http://www.thermoworks.com/products/a...

        Option 2 is a thermometer that you stick into the meat, chicken or fish when you think it's done and it will confirm your thoughts or not. For this something like the Thermopen is fantastic, we've had ours a few years and the battery is still just fine. Thermoworks has less expensive insert thermometers as well, check them out here: http://www.thermoworks.com/products/l... The advantage here is you don't need a wire coming out of the oven.

        1. Deal with the battery and get the Thermapen. Look on their website for an open box deal and you can get it for $75. It's expensive comparatively but I got one recently and it's astonishingly fast and very, very accurate. It's the most impressive piece of kitchen equipment I own. I recommend it very highly.

          1. Thanks everyone - you convinced me to get a thermapen.....which I would have known to do if I had done a board search and read earlier discussions on the same topic! Thanks again!

            1 Reply
            1. re: kimbers324

              We've had our thermapen for over 5 years and still haven't needed to change the battery and it's works flawlessly.

            2. I just got a ThermoPop and really like it. It gives a reading in only a few seconds and it's much less expensive than a Thermapen.


              3 Replies
              1. re: Burghfeeder

                I didn't realize when I first posted about the Thermopop that it is actually manufactured by ThermoWorks, which is the company that manufactures the Thermapen. In their booklet, they claim the Thermapen gives almost instant readings in 3 seconds. The claim for the ThermoPop is 5 seconds.

                I've been using the ThermoPop for a month now and am still very pleased with it's performance.


                1. re: Burghfeeder

                  Yeah, the Thermopop is also a terrific little device. I prefer the Thermapen for several design reasons but the pop is a great thermometer, too.

                  1. re: Burghfeeder

                    When/if my Thermapen bites the dust, there's no question - it will be replaced with a Thermapop. Probe length/size and speed are the two things I care most about and in those respects it's so close to the Thermapen that there's no reason for me to pay more.

                2. I have the Thermapen and it's great except for one very annoying thing: Since's it's auto on-off when you move the probe, if you open it and use it, find out your food still needs cooking, then leave it, it'll turn off by itself so you have to move the probe to turn it on again.

                  I know, first world problems.

                  12 Replies
                  1. re: Shazam

                    Yea, you could just close it after you use it :)

                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                      So that requires me to wash it first. That is what annoys me.

                      1. re: Shazam

                        What are you sticking it in, give it a swipe with a towel and close it

                        1. re: fldhkybnva

                          I'm sticking it into meat. So yeah when the temp is 100 I'm not wiping it with a towel and closing it into that bacterial trap.

                          1. re: Shazam

                            It doesn't have to be closed all the way to turn it off. Watch the readout... it will go dark when it's about an inch from the clip.

                            1. re: DuffyH

                              Oh, yeah, I knew that. Still a pain. But sharebear provided the solution I hope. Regardless it's a very small annoyance in my life.

                    2. re: Shazam

                      there's a little switch thingee inside the battery cover that will allow you to turn off the auto-off function actually! If you still have your owners manual check it out :)

                      1. re: sharebear

                        Thanks, I'll check that out. I did look in the manual to see if it was changeable but only perused quickly.

                        1. re: Shazam

                          No problem. Here: http://thermoworks.com/pdf/user_manua...

                          Look on the bottom left side, Switch 3 is the one that will disable the Auto-off.

                          1. re: sharebear

                            Hey thanks for this, I changed it. I'm actually VERY HAPPY you told me about this!

                        1. re: Shazam

                          My problem with Thermapen is that it's right-handed. Since I'm an obligate leftie, if I want to hit the target I'm aiming for, I've got to insert it with my left hand, then spin it to read the temp. Annoying. But still, I love it for the way it performs.

                          Maybe I'll go post this over on the leftie thread that's been running for a few days. :)

                        2. I have this Polder probe thermometer...


                          I know it has a battery and people complain about the probes dying (which has not happened to me), but as for accuracy I will tell you this...When I plug the probe into the unit before I use it, it registers the same air/room temperature that is on my house thermostat.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: Philly Ray

                            I used that Polder for years, and can't count the number of probes I had to replace over time. Plus unless I tested the probe before each use, I could never be sure if was accurate (overcooked several good roasts due to that). Now I have a Thermapen and am NOT going back!

                          2. http://www.amazon.com/CDN-DTQ450X-Pro...

                            Is $17 and fast and much cheaper than the most excellent thermopen

                            1. I just ordered the Chef Alarm from ThermoWorks. I hate my current candy thermometer and I need a new kitchen timer anyway. I'll post back once I get it and use it. I still love my thermapen but I needed something that I could leave in the food. I'm planning on using the Chef Alarm in the oven, on the bbq and the stove top.

                              1. I have the ProAccurate Quick Tip Thermometer: http://www.nwcutlery.com/CDN-ProAccur...

                                I mainly use it for roasted meats and it works very well. Quick response and simple to use. I've never overcooked another lean chicken breast or pork loin after getting this thermometer.