Cooking Safety Tips to Help Protect Your Home During the Holidays
It’s the holiday season. That means all over Milwaukee homes have begun to twinkle with lights and family and friends are enjoying unique quality time together. During the buzz of the season, it’s easy to overlook important cooking safety precautions. Whether you’re hosting a crowd or keeping your gathering small, making sure your home and loved ones stay safe is essential. Review the following tips to make sure you know how to avoid making potentially dangerous mistakes in the kitchen during the holidays and year-round!
Cooking Safety Essentials
1. Clear Countertops & Floors
Clear any kitchen waste like food packaging and paper towels or other reusable kitchen items like oven mitts and dish towels from the area around the stove. These items can easily catch fire next to a hot burner and should be stored at a safe distance. Make sure appliance cords are secured and tucked away toward the back of the countertop, and put away any small appliances not in use. To avoid slips and falls, keep your kitchen floor clear and clean up any spills right away.
2. Stovetop Safety
Be careful when using your stovetop by making sure hot water and oil doesn’t splash on high heat or when adding ingredients. Wear close-fitting clothing when cooking to make sure your clothes stay away from heat and flame, and make sure that the handles of pots and pans are always turned away from the front of the stove. This way, you avoid knocking them down and potentially scalding yourself or someone nearby.
3. Watch Food At All Times
While you may feel the need to chase kids or pets around the house or accidentally get distracted watching the game, make sure an adult is in the kitchen at all times keeping an eye on any food being prepared. Kitchen fires are usually the result of forgetting about or leaving food in the oven or on the stove for too long. For dishes cooking for longer periods of time, set an oven timer or a timer on your smartphone and return to check on the dish frequently.
4. Cooking Safety and Kids
Part of the joy of the season is spending time with the kids or grandkids. Keep them safe by keeping them out of the kitchen as much as possible. Set up games or toys to keep kids entertained while you’re preparing the meal, or ask a family member to watch them in another area of the house.
If allowing older kids to help with food preparation is part of your holiday tradition, teach them early about cooking safety, give them low-risk jobs that don’t involve the stove or sharp tools like knives, and never leave them alone in the kitchen. You can even set up a station for older kids to pitch in at the dining room table away from the more hazardous appliances in the kitchen.
5. Be Prepared: Fire Extinguisher & Evacuation Plan
Though it is usually the last thing on your mind, emergency preparedness should be integrated into your holiday routine. Fires are unfortunately common during the Winter holiday season. In addition to checking that all the smoke detectors in your home are working, keep a larger pan or baking sheet handy in case you need to snuff out a smaller fire. Be sure you have a working fire extinguisher in your kitchen and know how to use it. Finally, review your home evacuation plan with your family in the event that a fire spreads and you must evacuate.
Here When You Need Us
No matter what, Kelmann Restoration is here for you if an emergency should occur that causes damage to your home. You can reach us 24/7. We take all safety, including cooking safety seriously, and we sincerely wish you a safe and joyous holiday season.