Can You Eat Medium Steak While Pregnant? A Complete Guide!

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Pregnancy brings about many dietary considerations, and one question that often arises is, “Can you eat medium steak while pregnant?”. We’re here to guide you through the nuances of steak safety during pregnancy so that you can enjoy your meal.

Can You Eat Medium Steak While Pregnant?

The safety of a medium steak during pregnancy depends on its internal temperature, which generally falls within the range of 140°–150°F. To ensure safety, consider whether this temperature exceeds the recommended minimum of 145°F as specified by the USDA. If the internal temperature of a medium steak is below 145°F, it might be unsafe for pregnant women. Conversely, a medium steak with an internal temperature exceeding 145°F is typically safe for pregnancy consumption. 

Can You Eat Medium Rare Steak During Pregnancy?

can you eat medium rare steak during pregnancy
A medium rare steak

Is medium rare steak safe for pregnancy?

The short answer is no.

Cooking steak to a minimum internal temperature of 145°F (63°C) is important. It can reduce the risk of bacteria in raw meat and ensure food safety during pregnancy. The most reliable method to confirm this is to use a food thermometer when preparing steak at home.

However, a medium rare steak usually falls below this recommended minimum temperature (about 130°–135°F). It is considered undercooked meat.

What happens if you eat a medium-rare steak while pregnant?

Pregnant people are more susceptible to a bacterial infection called listeriosis, found in meat that’s not fully cooked, like medium-rare steaks.

While listeriosis isn’t common, it can have serious consequences during pregnancy because it might harm the developing baby. In severe cases, it can even lead to miscarriage, premature birth, or stillbirth.

That’s why avoiding foods like medium rare steak and pre-made salads, deli meats, and raw seafood when pregnant is a good idea. This helps reduce the chances of getting infected.

It’s important to note that some people with listeriosis may not show symptoms, making it tricky to detect and treat early on.

Can You Eat Medium Well Steak During Pregnancy?

can you eat medium well steak during pregnancy
A medium well steak

Yes, you can usually enjoy medium-well steak during pregnancy as it’s cooked to an internal temperature of about 150°–155°F. This level of cooking is suitable for pregnancy because it helps eliminate any harmful bacteria lurking in the meat, like listeria, salmonella, and E. coli.

Medium-well steak strikes a nice balance between being safe and keeping the meat juicy and tender. It’s a great choice for expectant mothers when it’s prepared correctly.

How To Eat Steak When Pregnant?

how to eat steak when pregnant
A steak

If you prefer to enjoy steak during pregnancy, following food safety guidelines will protect your and your unborn baby’s health. Here are some important notes to ensure a safe steak experience:

  • Thoroughly cook your steak: Make sure your steak is cooked to meet food safety recommendations for pregnant women. The recommended minimum internal temperature for steak is 145 degrees F (63°C). Proper cooking is key to eliminating any potentially harmful bacteria.
  • Use a meat thermometer: Invest in a reliable thermometer to ensure your steak reaches a safe temperature.
  • Avoid leaving meat out: Hot foods should stay hot, and cold foods should stay cold. Don’t leave cooked or uncooked steak on the counter for extended periods. Food should not be left unrefrigerated for more than 2 hours or 1 hour on hot days.
  • Maintain cleanliness in your kitchen: If you cook the steak at home, maintain the highest cleanliness. Thoroughly clean all utensils, surfaces, and cutting boards that come into contact with the meat. Use hot, soapy water to clean everything, including your hands, before, during, and after cooking.
  • Dining out safely: Enjoying steak at restaurants can be fine during pregnancy. If you decide to order steak, consider requesting medium-well or well-done steak since it usually reaches the recommended temperature.


How should steak be cooked when pregnant?

When cooking steak during pregnancy, you should choose high-quality cuts and ensure they reach an internal temperature of at least 145°F (63°C). Avoid rare or undercooked steak and practice safe grilling by preheating the grill and turning the steak once. Marinate in the refrigerator to prevent cross-contamination, and allow the cooked steak to rest before slicing.

Can you eat pink steak while pregnant?

Ensure all meat is cooked thoroughly, with no pink or bloody areas. Pay extra attention when cooking sausages and minced meat, as they risk harboring toxoplasmosis. This tiny parasite can harm you and your baby if it is raw or undercooked.

Can I eat medium-rare steak while breastfeeding?

Eating medium rare steak while breastfeeding is generally safe, as long as it is from a reputable source and handled and cooked properly. It’s important to note that you cannot transmit a foodborne illness through breast milk, which seems to be the reason for your inquiry.


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