Carryover cooking

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Carryover cooking (sometimes referred to as resting) is the phenomenon that food retains heat and continues to cook even after being removed from the source of heat.[1] Carryover cooking is often used as a finishing step in preparation of foods that are roasted or grilled, and must be accounted for in recipes as it can increase the internal temperature of foods by temperatures between 5 and 25 degrees Fahrenheit (3–14°C).[2] The larger and denser the object being heated, the greater the amount of temperature increase due to carryover cooking.

Resting, when used as a synonym for carryover cooking, also refers to the process of allowing the liquids in meats to redistribute through the food over a 5- to 20-minute period. This allows for a more flavorful and juicy finished product.[3]


Because larger objects have a lower surface-area-to-volume ratio, they are more able to retain heat. This heat retention translates to a uniform temperature increase throughout the food as the heat dissipates to cooler areas. Additionally, foods with a higher water content are more subject to carry over cooking as water has a higher heat capacity and will have more heat to distribute throughout the food item.


  1. ^ Turner, Danielle. "Carryover Cooking". Cooking Clarified. Retrieved 27 November 2012. 
  2. ^ Brown, Amy (2008). Understanding Food: Principles and Prn (Third ed.). Thomson Wadsworth. p. 140. ISBN 978-0-495-10745-3. 
  3. ^ "Food Science: Why You Should Rest Meat After Cooking". The Kitchn. Retrieved 28 December 2015.