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I think an instant read thermometer is a must, but Thermapen is just one of many brands available. I have one and I'm delighted with it, love the very fine tip and very fast readout, but any high-quality instant-read thermo should give good results if it's accurately calibrated. There are some cheap ones out there and aside from being slower, I suspect they're much less accurate and also less stable over time. If yours is calibrated well (check it from time to time with an ice water bath and boiling water, should be within a degree or so) and is fast enough for you, and has a tip that's fine enough to get it where you want it, then I say don't worry be happy.
Cutting corners on equipment will haunt you in the end.
I have seen many a customer flinch at the $90+ price tag on the Thermapen and buy a $30 alternative...only to buy the real deal soon down the line. Now they have $130 invested-LOL
Santa Clara, CA
I hadn't been able to talk myself into the Thermapen, but finally ordered one when I saw the version with flames on it. The wife mocked me for laying out that much cash for a thermometer, but she quickly decided it was worth it. And then, we liked it so much we gave all the sisters and parents Thermapens for Christmas (fastest I've ever finished Christmas shopping).
I like being able to quickly check a couple of spots in the meat to see if I need to adjust/flip. However, the biggest benefit to me is that I don't have to WONDER if I'm getting a good read. No more guessing.
SMITTYtheSMOKER said:Cutting corners on equipment will haunt you in the end.I have seen many a customer flinch at the $90+ price tag on the Thermapen and buy a $30 alternative...only to buy the real deal soon down the line. Now they have $130 invested-LOL
Thermapens are great, but consider the RT600c by the same company. 25% of the cost of a Thermapen, difference in time to take reading is only a whopping 3secs more.
It only comes in boring white though.
Does anyone know if they need to be calibrated? I did two cooks this week and was dissappointed in the results going off of the Thermapen readings. Steaks cooked to 140 were raw in the middle and steaks cooked to 160 were medium rare. Did spatchcock chicken last night and it took almost 2 hours to cook the chicken (thighs to 180) at 400 dome. and the chicken was dry. - Over cooked IMO.