Potentially Hazardous Foods

Fact Sheet Table of Contents

What Are They?

Potentially hazardous foods (PHF) need extra care in handling. These are foods that spoil easily, and if not handled properly can cause foodborne illness. Common foods that are considered to be potentially hazardous are:

Meat Gravies
Poultry Soups
Milk Meat Sauces
Eggs Custards
Fish Meat & Potato Salads
Cream Filled Baked Goods  


Some other foods that are potentially hazardous are:

Cut Melons Cooked Beans
Baked & Mashed Potatoes Cooked Vegetables
Tofu Rice

What to do?

Keep all potentially hazardous foods out of the temperature DANGER ZONE (140° - 41°F) by keeping hot foods at 140°F or above and cold foods at 41°F or below. Check temperatures of the food with a probe thermometer frequently in where foods are stored in:

Steam Tables Hot Boxes
Preparation Coolers Refrigerators
Walk-in Coolers Cold Tops