What Recipes Mean When They Say Room Temperature

(Image credit: Henry Chen)

When a recipe calls for something to be at room temperature, what does that really mean? How cold or warm should your kitchen really be?

Kitchen Fact: Room temperature is an environment that is 70°Fahrenheit (21°Celsius).

Knowing standard room temperature is very useful when cooking. If you know the actual temperature in your kitchen, you can compare it against standard room temperature and make any necessary adjustments to your cooking.

For example, move things that will melt or be jeopardized by too-warm temperatures (like pie dough) to cooler places, or refrigerate or freeze briefly first before working with them. Conversely, find warmer spots if you need to let dough rise or food to stay warm.

Kitchen Fact Source: Cook’s Illustrated’s The Science of Good Cooking

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