Top 6 Best Meat Thermometers: In-Depth Reviews and Complete Buyer’s Guide
Are you a meat lover? If so, you know how disappointing it can be to overcook – or undercook – your prized brisket or ribeye steak.
In fact, if you order a “well-done steak” in some circles, you’ll be in for a serious scolding! On the other side of the coin, undercooked meat – especially poultry – can lead to food poisoning.
Fortunately, you can avoid these scenarios by getting yourself the best meat thermometer.
A good meat thermometer helps you to achieve precise cooking temperatures for all types of meats, killing food poisoning organisms and preventing meat death by overcooking.
But there are hordes of meat thermometers on the market, so finding a reliable one can be tricky.
To help you out, we spent hours combing through and testing the best meat thermometers available on the market, so you don’t have to.
In A Rush? Check Out Our Top Pick
If you don’t have the time or inclination to read our reviews thoroughly, try our top pick for the best overall meat thermometer.
Why Buy this?
After an intensive assessment, the ThermoPro TP20 stood out as our favorite. This thermometer has accurate, precise, and easy-to-read temperature markings and it applies dual-probe technology that saves you from overcooking or undercooking frustrations:
- Accurate, reliable, and superior thermometer
- Dual-probe technology allows you to monitor two meat dishes simultaneously
- Wireless, with a coverage of 30 feet, so you can cook your meat as you do other chores
- Suitable for roasting or grilling poultry, beef, fish, pork, BBQ, lamb, or ham
- More efficient heat resistance than any other meat thermometer in this review
- Super-sturdy; it’s challenging to find a thermometer so durable that it won’t break when pushed hard
How To Use A Meat Thermometer
How to Pick the Perfect Meat Thermometer For Your Needs
Type and Model
When you go to the market, you’ll find a wide selection of meat thermometers, the two primary ones being analog and digital.
Analog meat thermometers feature a display dial and lens. They are pocket-friendly compared to digital ones.
Digital meat thermometers use modern technology, including wireless and Bluetooth connectivity. They are more reliable, easy to read and offer more features than their analog counterparts.
So, we generally recommend that you choose a digital meat thermometer – unless you have a particular reason for choosing analog, or you face budgetary constraints.
Another aspect to consider before purchasing a meat thermometer is its temperature range.
The best meat thermometer can withstand high and low temperatures without affecting its accuracy. Thermometers with high-temperature ranges eliminate your stress about overcooking or undercooking meat.
Meat cooking generally requires a thermometer with a temperature range between 145 degrees and 165 degrees Fahrenheit, but you can put these devices to a multitude of other uses. You can use them on other foods, including preparing ice cream, so it’s always best to choose a thermometer with a wide temperature range.
Nothing can be more disheartening than inaccurate readings on a meat thermometer, which translates to undercooking or overcooking your meat.
While no manufacturer will confess that their thermometers are inaccurate, we thought it was essential to test them. A good meat thermometer should have an accuracy of +/- 0.9 degrees, so pay attention to information about this before making your purchase decision.
Test the accuracy of your meat thermometer with ice
Probes are the next vital features to look out for in a meat thermometer. Different brands have different types of probes, in terms of length and construction material.
If you want a durable meat thermometer, choose one with stainless-steel probes. These probes are sturdy and can withstand corrosion and high temperatures.
Also consider the length and thickness of the probe. Short and long probes are appropriate for different types of meat.
Fortunately, digital meat thermometers offer more than one probe allowing you to pick the one to that’s right for the specific meat you’re cooking. For meat, a thicker probe also is better.
Performance is another essential characteristic to check before buying a meat thermometer.
As you know, this device should not only show the temperature of the meat you’re roasting or grilling but should also serve other cooking needs.
A perfect thermometer should have features that include a timer, preset temperatures, alarm, and temperature lock. These features enhance your ability to create the perfect meal and help you come off as an expert chef.
Imagine this situation: You purchase what you believe is the perfect meat thermometer for your needs. When you give it a try at home, it doesn’t work to your satisfaction, but you can’t get a replacement.
That’s why you must choose a meat thermometer with a manufacturer’s warranty.
Different manufacturers offer warranties that range from one to three years, though others even provide lifetime warranties.
Be sure that your thermometer has a generous warranty, so you get the best value for your money. Consider one with an extended warranty, so you don’t have to dig in your pocket if it breaks or malfunctions before its time.
Top 6 Meat Thermometer Reviews
Are you searching for a meat thermometer to help you monitor two types of meat simultaneously? Well, ThermoPro TP20 is the answer.
This thermometer is dual-probed to allow you to monitor your two separate types of meat at the same time. Also, you can use one probe for the meat and the other for monitoring the temperature of your grill, smoker, or oven, saving you time and money.
This device also features a mobile receiver that reaches up to 300 feet, enabling you to monitor your meat in the kitchen or yard remotely. So, you can watch TV or chat with your guests without worrying about overcooking the meat.
What’s more, the TP20 comes preprogrammed with USDA temperatures for different types of meat, which prevents overcooking or undercooking. Just pick the right temperature, and you’re set! For easy cooking in dark areas or night, this thermometer also comes with a backlit LCD.
The alarm on this thermometer alerts you when your meat or other food reaches the required temperature. It sends a flash and beep to warn you, so you’ll always enjoy perfectly cooked meat.
- Type: Wireless dual-probe technology
- Temperature range: 32 degrees to 572 degrees Fahrenheit
- Receiver coverage: Up to 300 feet
- Features preset USDA-approved temperatures
- Backlit LCD for easy reading in low-light conditions
- Dual-probe design
- The beep may be louder and more annoying than you expect
Accuracy is perhaps the most vital characteristic to consider in a meat thermometer.
Some thermometers fail to deliver the best results for high temperatures, but Lavatools PT12 does NOT. This one ranks as the most accurate thermometer in our review.
Lavatools PT12 has an accuracy index of less than 1 degree. It also has a reading time of three to four seconds, which is better than most meat thermometers in its class. Its handy antimicrobial coating also protects you from the risk of food poisoning.
To avoid losing or misplacing your meat thermometer, the Lavatools PT12 has a built-in integrated magnet, so you can attach it to your oven or grill when you’re not using it, so you always know where to find it!
Plus, it features IP65 splash-resistant construction that ensures zero effects from kitchen mishaps or minor spills. The Japanese-made sensor enhances its performance, reliability, and durability.
All told, the Lavatools PT20 Javelin meat thermometer offers the best value for your money. And it has global certification by food-safety bodies, including CE (European conformity), the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF), and the Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS).
- Accuracy: less than 1-degree Fahrenheit
- Temperature range: -4 to about 480 degrees Fahrenheit
- Speed: Three to four seconds
- Probe length: 2.75 inches
- High accuracy and read-time speed
- Comes with a built-in magnet for easy storage
- IP65 splash-resistant, protecting it from mishaps and spills
- Lacks a backlight feature for low-light conditions
Are you looking for a durable digital meat thermometer? If so, this Kizen model is the one for you!
This thermometer comes with fantastic features and sturdy construction that make it incredibly durable. It has instant temperature read-times of two to three seconds – though we found it can be as long as 10 seconds in some instances.
It is waterproof, thanks to its IPX7 rated acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) plastic body. And it features a decent-sized LCD and backlights to make temperature readings easier in low-light and dark conditions.
This device prioritizes ease of use. It does not have an on/off button; instead, it turns on when you open the probe and automatically shuts off after ten minutes if you don’t close it.
For storing, you can hang it from the built-in hanger hole, or you can attach it to your oven or fridge by its internal magnet.
Finally, the Kizen Instant Read Meat Thermometer features a temperature chart and extra card to ensure you have the right readings at each stage of the meat-cooking process.
- Accuracy: +/- 1-degree Fahrenheit
- Temperature range: -58 to +572 degrees Fahrenheit
- Speed: Two to three seconds
- Probe: Rotates 180 degrees
- Durable waterproof construction
- Fast temperature-read times
- Easy, safe storage
- The reading time is not reliable
If the design is your first consideration in a meat thermometer, the ThermoPro TP-O8S offers the best, in our opinion. This thermometer – another one from ThermoWorks – is a market leader for several reasons.
The TP-O8S features a mobile receiver with coverage of 300 feet, enabling you to monitor your cooking while you relax and watch some television, chat with your guests, or work on other household chores. You can also preset cooking temperatures for nine different types of meat and to meet your doneness levels.
The transmitter on this unit features stainless-steel dual probes, which support food safety. They are sturdy and can withstand temperatures as high as 715 degrees Fahrenheit, as the dual probe technology monitors two meats or grills at the same time.
This thermometer prioritizes design. In addition to serving up dual probes, it offers a convenient kitchen timer. The TP-O8S also offers long probes that enable you to reach the center of any cut of meat and deliver precise temperature readings throughout cooking.
- Type: Dual-probe technology
- Temperature range: 32 degrees to 572 degrees Fahrenheit
- Receiver coverage: Up to 300 feet
- Probe length: 3-inch and 8.5-inch probes of food-grade stainless steel
- Features durable shockproof technology
- Dual-probe technology
- Thick, sturdy, stainless-steel probes
- Uses AAA batteries that drain quickly during long cooking sessions
COMLIFE is a renowned manufacturer of kitchen accessories, so you can be confident that its meat thermometer will perform as expected.
This thermometer applies the most recent Bluetooth technology that enhances its effectiveness. And unlike most other meat thermometers, it comes with six probes, so it works for the full spectrum of cooking purposes. The probes are different colors to help you pick the right one for the meat you’re cooking, and it has a decent-sized display for easy temperature reading.
The device features preset meat-cooking temperatures and smoking options such as “Cold Smoke” and “Hot Smoke.” If the presets do not serve your needs, you can manually select your cooking time and temperature, and the device’s alarm will let you know when temperatures reach your setting.
Bluetooth connectivity allows you to get information right on your cell phone. It has coverage of 98 feet indoors and 197 feet outdoors. So, you don’t need to babysit your grill or oven throughout cooking. Just set your target temperatures and wait for the beep.
This high-technology pick is genuinely accurate and reliable, thanks to its FDA-approved probes and food-safety-certified materials. This thermometer features stainless-steel probes and a metal braiding Teflon core, which withstands high temperatures while ensuring food safety.
Sometimes, your budget can be a hindrance to getting a reliable meat thermometer. But NOT with the KT THERMO meat thermometer.
This thermometer is an excellent option for people on a tight budget. Though it has a basic look, it delivers on your meat-cooking needs.
The device is analog but has a faster reading time than some digital thermometers. It is fit for most professional meat cooking needs, including grilling, smoking, and roasting. Made of high-quality, food-grade stainless steel, it is sturdy and robust.
This KT Thermo thermometer features a sealed dial and laser welding that prevents dirt and water from penetrating. It is also dishwasher-safe, accurate, and reliable.
Despite being analog, the KT THERMO Meat Cooking Analog Thermometer allows you to set the appropriate target temperatures for your meat, so you can eliminate the guesswork and prevent overcooking or undercooking.
Its heat-resistance capability allows it to withstand high temperatures of up to 550 degrees Fahrenheit, so it’s suitable for any type of meat you want to cook and any cooking method you use.
- Type: Analog
- Reading Speed: less than five seconds
- Temperature range: 120 degrees to 220 degrees Fahrenheit
- Probe length: 5.5 inches
- Suitable for people on a tight budget
- Fast and easy to read
- High quality, sturdy construction
- Offers a limited temperature range
Final Verdict: Best Meat Thermometer for Your Money
All of the meat thermometers that we reviewed here are exceptional for meat roasting, grilling, or smoking purposes. The notable differences between them include type, temperature ranges, prices, and functionalities.
We ranked the KT Thermo as the most budget-friendly thermometer while the Kizen Instant Read Meat Thermometer scooped the durability award.
In the same manner, TP-O8S ranked as the first best technology. Others performed well in their categories, but our top pick for the overall best meat thermometer across the board is the ThermoPro T20.
This thermometer is wireless and features dual-probe technology, a splash-proof receiver, and a wide-display backlit LCD for easy reading. It also provides you with preset temperatures and a programmed alarm.
What’s more, our top pick delivers receiver coverage of 300 feet and a temperature range of 32 degrees to 572 degrees Fahrenheit. These features combine to make it a perfect choice for grilling, smoking, roasting, or BBQ needs.
It is also reliable, accurate, and durable, too, assuring you high performance and value for your money – a highly worthy investment!