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Why does the color of cooked beef indicate its degree of doneness?

The red pigment in rare meat, myoglobin, undergoes chemical changes as its temperature rises. When the meat's degree of doneness is rare (an internal temperature of approximately 130F), the myoglobin in the interior still retains most of its red color. When the meat is medium-rare (approximately 135 to 140F), the myoglobin is pink. At medium (approximately 145 to 150F), just a trace of the pink remains. By the time the steak is well done (160F), all myoglobin in the meat has turned drab brown. (Note: These descriptions apply after the meat has rested, not when it has just been removed from the oven at these temperatures.)

08:30:21 on 03/10/07 by Webmaster - Questions and Answers -