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How to Clean Grill Grates

Cleaning grill grates is definitely not among the things we love to do, but it is surely a thing that you have to do if you’re planning to cook on a grill. The condition of grill grates has a large impact on the flavor and comfort of cooking on a grill which is why I suggest to clean it regularly ( preferably before or after each cooking ).

After each cooking, warm up the grill for 15 minutes, then scrub the food remains using a brush, and once in a while ( several times in a season ) thoroughly wash the entire grates.

Below you’ll find several methods that you can use for cleaning all types of grill grates, for the sake of convenience I placed it all in the table of contents.

Best Way to Clean Grill Grates

how often clean a grill

There are several types of grill grates and the truth is that not many people know how to properly clean them. It is not a difficult or bothersome thing to do, yet depending on the type of your grates it is better to know how to properly clean them in order to be careful and not damage their surface.

As I already mentioned, the best way to clean grates depends on their type. For example, cast-iron grates or stainless steel ones require different types of care from porcelain grates.

Types of porcelain grates

  • Stainless Steel
  • Cast-iron
  • Porcelain or porcelain coated

Why is it a good idea to clean grill grates?

clean cooking grates benefits

Dirty grill grates have a negative impact on the flavor of food and on functioning of the grill, grease and food remains often cause unwanted flare-ups.

You have to take it into account that there are two types of cleaning grill grates. Simple quick cleaning and thorough cleaning.

Simple cleaning consists of warming up the grill to the temperature of at least 250 degrees (F) for about 15 minutes, and then cleaning with the right type of brush so that the surface of the grates doesn’t get damaged. Such cleaning has to be performed after each cooking.

Thorough cleaning partially consists of the same things as with simple cleaning plus using different agents combined with warm water in order to remove though stains. This type of stains appears as a result of not cleaning the grill after each cooking.

Thorough cleaning takes much more time than the simple type, which is why I suggest performing simple cleaning after each use of the grill. That way you will keep the grates in great condition without much effort.

How to Season Grill Grates

seasoning grill grates

You need to know that cast-iron grill grates love oil. The more you cook on them, the more you prevent rust and food sticking. After each cooking you should clean the grates, and then rub them with plant-based oil. Such measure protects your grates from rust, it is effective when performed regularly.

Maintenance using oil is required for all grates on which rust has appeared. If there is rust, perform a complete maintenance in the way I described below.

Rub the cleaned grates with oil ( spread the oil using a cloth or a paper towel ) then warm up the grill and allow the oil to „burn away”. Repeat this action one time and you’re done, your grates are preserved again.

What type of grates doesn’t need seasoning ?

Porcelain grates don’t require seasoning. The same goes for Porcelain-enameled cast iron grate and Porcelain-enameled steel cooking grates. Their surface effectively protects them from rust which means they don’t have to be coated with oil. All you have to do is warm them up over 10-15 minutes before cooking, and then coat your food with a brush soaked with oil.

Protecting grill grates from corrosion

rusty grill grates

Of course the first most important thing is full maintenance. Then regular cleaning and rubbing the grates with oil ( the exception are porcelain coated grates, which are resistant to corrosion ).

Check out how to keep grill from rusting where you will find information on things like how to protect grill grates from corrosion.