Can You Leave A Meat Thermometer In The Oven?

  • By: Brendan

If you love to cook, then you know how a meat thermometer helps to understand if the meat is cooked. Many experienced cooks can easily estimate the doneness of the meat by eyeballing it. Ask your mother or grandmother – they’re likely to be scandalized by the idea of a thermometer. So do you really need a thermometer? And, can you leave a meat thermometer in the oven? Questions like these are quite common, especially if you’re new.

Can you leave a meat thermometer in the oven

Yes, you can leave a meat thermometer in the oven, for the entire duration of the cook, but make sure your thermometer is oven-safe. Other type of meat thermometers like instant-read thermometers cannot be left in the oven for a longer duration. To know if your meat thermometer is oven-proof or not you need to check the thermometers packaging for this detail. 

First things first! A meat thermometer helps you achieve perfection. You can read the doneness of the meat accurately, using a meat thermometer. It tells you if the meat is cooked enough, and if it is safe to eat. It also gives you the perfect taste and texture of meat. You really don’t want to serve – or eat – overcooked, chewy meat, do you?

So, a meat thermometer that is accurately calibrated is a staple in the kitchen! And, you can choose from two different types of meat thermometers – the oven-going meat thermometer and the instant-read meat thermometer. While the first one can be kept inside the oven, the second one cannot be kept inside.

How do I know if my Meat Thermometer is ovenproof?

The easiest way to understand if the thermometer is oven-proof or not is to examine the packaging and the description at the time of purchase. Whether you someone to assist you or you’re on your own, make sure to read the details about the product properly at the time of purchase.

In addition, it is advised that you do proper research before making a purchase. All the information about different meat thermometers should be available online, along with the necessary reviews by users. So, take your pick from among the best oven safe meat thermometers.

What is an oven safe Thermometer?

To put it simply, an oven-safe thermometer is one that can resist the extremely high temperature inside the oven. This is necessary because such thermometers are inserted into the meat when it is being cooked. Don’t confuse it with an oven thermometer which gives a rough idea of the temperature inside the oven. The oven safe thermometer is for measuring the temperature of the meat while it is being cooked, roasted, or grilled.

If you’re using a dial thermometer, then you can monitor the temperature simply by looking at the dial. This type of thermometer has a coil that expands with heat and drives the dial to move. However, you can also pick yourself a more sophisticated digital thermometer which sends out a beep to tell you that the meat has reached the desired temperature. They have a probe at the end of a long wire, which can be left in the meat even after you take it out of the oven.

Which is the best oven safe meat thermometer?

There are many oven safe meat thermometers available these days, in online and offline stores. And, one of the best among them is the ThermoPro TP-17 Dual Probe Digital Cooking Meat Thermometer, which can cater to your kitchen needs.

This device is equipped with dual-probe technology, and has stainless steel probes. This means that you can read two different types of food simultaneously. It can indicate USDA-advised preset temperatures, or you can adjust the temperature manually.

This BBQ thermometer has a large, backlit LCD to display both timer and temperature when you’re cooking it in a oven, a smoker, or on the grill. This gives you an intuitive experience, especially when you’re cooking at night and/or outdoors.

The thermometer has a magnetic back and a flip-out counter-top stand, which allow you to place it anywhere you want. The LCD clearly indicates it when the temperature exceeds the measurable range or drops below it.


  1. Oven-proof meat thermometer with step-down probe design for precise and quick temperature retrieval
  2. Temperature range of 14˚F to 572˚F (-10˚C to 300˚C)
  3. Comes with a 1-year warranty that can be increased to 3 years after post-purchase registration
  4. 40″ mesh cable made of stainless steel to handle up to 716°F, connected at the base


  1. Capable of alerting you about temp changes in seconds
  2. High accuracy of ±1.8°F (±1°C)
  3. Preset temperatures that come in handy for the rookies in the kitchen
  4. Can display temperature in both Fahrenheit and Celsius


  1. May offer incorrect reading as a result of careless or improper use over a prolonged time
  2. Must prevent exposure of the plugin hole or probe plug to water, as unit is not waterproof

When and How to Use a Meat Thermometer?

When it comes to large cuts of meat, like whole turkeys or roasts, pick an oven-going meat thermometer. This kind of meat thermometer can handle strong heat while you’re roasting meat in the oven or cooking it on the grill.

All you have to do is insert the thermometer in the meat before you begin the cooking process. There are two types of thermometers – digital and dial. The device needs to go at least two inches into the center of the uncooked meat cut in the thickest section or the largest muscle. Make sure that it doesn’t touch the fat or bone of the meat, or the pan.

The process will help you to get an accurate reading of the temperature of the meat. When the thermometer indicates the desired temperature, you will need to push it a little deeper into the meat. If you observe a drop in the temperature, you will need to continue cooking.

For thinner meat items, like a burger, a chop, or a steak, you can work with the Instant-read meat thermometer. There are two types – the dial variety and the digital variety. You will need to put it into the meat once the food is out of the oven to get an instant reading.

You need to insert a dial instant-read thermometer at least 2 inches into the meat, and you can expect the reading in about 15-20 seconds. On the other hand, a digital instant-read thermometer can give you the accurate temperature in just about 10 seconds and it only needs to go about 1/2  inch into the meat. But you cannot leave either in the oven while the meat is getting cooked.

How long can a Meat Thermometer be kept in the oven?

You can keep most oven-going meat thermometers in the oven throughout the period of cooking the meat. They are designed to work safely even in the high temperature inside the oven.

But be careful!

You must not confuse the oven-going thermometer with an instant one, which cannot stay in the oven during the cooking process. They are not rated to stand the high temperature of the oven when it is on.

Do I leave the Meat Thermometer in the meat the entire cooking time?

We have already established how it is a good idea to gauge the temperature of the meat using a meat thermometer. From pork roast to chicken breast, you need a thermometer to understand when it is truly ready for consumption.

The USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) recommends various temperature levels for different types of meat. This means that the particular meat must be cooked to the recommended temperature level to be considered safe for consumption. If you’re using an instant-read thermometer, you will get the reading within 30 seconds after you pull it out of the oven.

While it can give you a quick reading, an instant meat thermometer is not oven-safe, and you cannot leave it in the meat when it is cooking in the oven. When the minimum cooking time draws to its end, use the thermometer and allow it to sit in for 15-30 seconds at a depth of between 1/2 and 2 inches, depending on the type of thermometer you are using. Some thermometers also have an indicator mark on the stem.

There are thermometers designed in a two-piece style, and these can be left in the meat when you are cooking it in the oven. These thermometers offer a continuous display of the temperatures, and they will help you monitor the cooking process closely.

Can you leave Meat Thermometer in turkey in oven?

A standard meat thermometer that is oven-safe is made of metal, designed to withstand high temperature. So, you can put it in the turkey – or any meat, for that matter – before you start cooking in the oven. Just place the oven-proof meat thermometer in the turkey before the cooking cycle starts. The thermometer will help you check the bird’s internal temperature while it is cooking.

You will find it easy to position the thermometer in the turkey. You just have to place the device in the thickest part of the thigh. This is the part that takes the longest to cook. Check if your thermometer indicates that the thigh portion has reached the temperature at which turkey is completely cooked, i.e., 165 °F. If it does, it means that the rest of the meat is also done. If the thermometer moves out of position during the process of cooking, all you need to do is to re-position it.


So, now you know everything about meat thermometers of all kinds. So, don’t shy away from purchasing one! It is a good idea to invest in a good oven-proof meat thermometer so that you can cook the healthiest, juiciest meat, cooked to perfect – every time!

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