Cleaning your grill is simple.
Here's a few methods and products that make cleaning grill grates a breeze.
Some people don’t clean the grates, “it adds flavor to next grill,” they say ... NO ... that's not a thing. Only lazy people say that. Don’t be like them. Grease, oil, and marinade get caked up during grilling. After they sit there for a while, they turn rancid and will make your food taste bad. Just clean the grates, it's not that hard.
Simple Ways To Clean a Grill Grate
To prove to you just how easy it can be let's review the three most common methods of cleaning.
The Obvious Approach: Brushing
This method works best if it is done immediately after grilling while the grate is still hot. Before the grates cool off, scrape each grate with a brush, both top and bottom sides. You can also dip the brush in water which will create a steam that loosens the grease. Not only will this make cleaning time shorter, but it will discourage insects from hanging around your grill. Depending on your grate you may need to wipe them down with a cloth after scrapping.
The Lazy Approach: Burning
The idea behind this method is simple, get the grate super hot (550° F) until all the caked on grease burns up. You can throw the grates in a self-cleaning oven or simply place some aluminum foil down on top of the grate, close the lid and light up the grill. After about 10-15 minutes all of the grease should be a white powder, simply brush it off and you're done.
The Neat Freak Approach: Soaking
Although, brushing and burning are the standard methods for cleaning, all grates should be soaked at least a couple times a year.
Just fill up the sink or a large bucket with water and a bunch of dish soap. Add a little baking soda and let the grates soak for an hour. Afterward, scrub and rinse.
The DIY Approach
You can easily make your own scrubber with a block of hardwood. Use the block to scrub the grates after grilling, eventually, you will carve grooves into the block that fit perfectly onto your grate.
Aluminum foil is another easy DIY scrubber and also a lifesaver if you have to use a lazy person’s grill. Simply heat up the grates, then wad up some foil and scrub away.
There's no lack of gadgets, accessories, and DIY tips that can make clean up a breeze. Here are a few of our top picks in each category.
First, the scrub brush. This is a staple to most any grill. It has been around a long time but although it has been a standard when it comes to grill cleaning, it's not necessarily the best option out there. If you decide to go the brush route, make sure you do your research and get a quality brush. Beware of cheap bristle brushes. The bristles can fall out and, if you are not diligent in cleaning your grates, those bristles can get stuck to your food. You don’t want to know what happens if you accidently digest a cheap brass bristle. But if you do, Google it, you won’t buy cheap again.
With no bristles to worry about and performing the job better than traditional brushes, this brush wins our top pick endorsement. While you will need to purchase replacement pads, I've found that they last a heck of a long time. Nonetheless, it cost more than a traditional brush, but in my opinion it's worth it.
With The weber traditional style brush is built to last and it includes a scraper that fits the kettle style grill grates perfectly. I've also found that the scraper does a good job even on my thicker grates. You can't beat the price for the effectiveness you get out of this grate cleaner.
Scrapes are useful tools with a U-shaped tip, that fit over your grate bars. You can use one of these to easily scrape each rung. It takes longer than a brush but in general, it does a better job.
Again, no bristles here. Winning our vote because of its heavy duty universal build. While scrapers are just as effective as any other brush, they take a little longer to get the job done. Doesn't hurt that it's made right here in the good ol' US of A.
Like any other gadget, there's many that fail to live up to the amount of work they will claim to save you. Grill cleaning gadgets are no different. I'll take a standard grill brush over most of the grill cleaning gadgets out there.
No tricks here, just steam at 135 degrees. Hot enough to kill the toughest bacterias and break down the grease that's caked onto your grates, grease pans, and well, you're entire grill really. This method is similar to the soaking method in that I only do it once in a great while (like once a year usually before the holidays).