Outdoor Cooking and Grilling

The following guidelines should be used for food establishments that are cooking food products in an outdoor setting adjacent to an approved food establishment, and then serving the food either inside or outside the facility.



The following guidelines adequately meet the conditions of the State Food Service Sanitation Requirements, 410 IAC 7-24


  • Food preparation shall take place inside an approved and permitted food service establishment on the same site as the grill

  • Grills shall be secured when not in use

  • Grills shall be reasonably vector proof

  • Grease and food droppings shall be collected and properly disposed

  • Proper lighting shall be present if grill is used at night

  • Approved hand washing facilities shall be convenient, easily accessible, and within 25 feet of the outdoor grill

  • Food shall be transported to and from the grill in a covered container

  • Grill shall be placed on a pad or other impervious surface, such as concrete or asphalt

  • A thermometer shall be available adjacent to the outdoor grill for proper temperature maintenance during food cooking and storage

  • Grill areas shall be maintained in a neat and sanitary manner

  • Food shall not be served from immediate grill area, but from food prep area inside establishment

  • Grill design shall be approved by NSF or local health department. See grill design guidelines below


Grill Design Guidelines

Grills should have the following:

  • Removable racks / shelves

  • Do not use 55 gallon drums

  • Securable

  • Easily cleanable

  • Have effective heat source

  • Can effectively maintain proper temperatures

  • Grill shall reach safe cooking temperatures within one (1) hour

  • Grill shall have adequate ventilation to remove smoke and fumes safely

  • Minimal risk of outdoor fire

Home Grilling and Picnic Tips

An Adobe PDF document of Grilling and Picnic tips from the U.S. FDA can be helpful in making your outdoor cooking experience safe and enjoyable.  Adobe Acrobat Reader is available from Adobe Systems.


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