When summer hits, you want to have every meal outdoors. (And every morning coffee and afternoon ice cream, too.)
So you’re probably using your grill a lot. It makes for yummy burgers, but dealing with the residue isn’t nearly as enjoyable. Here’s the good news: cleaning up your grill isn’t nearly as daunting as it seems—if you do it the right way. We asked Jimmy Shotwell, owner of Memphis Barbeque Supply, for his expert tips.
Tools You’ll Need:
- Heat-Resistant Gloves
- Bristle-Free Grill Brush
- Spray bottle
- Aluminum foil
STEP 1: Pre-Cleaning Prep
The best way to clean your grill is while it’s hot, ideally after each use. Turn heat to high for about 15 minutes to burn grease and stuck-on food into carbon. You’ll know it’s ready when it stops smoking. Turn grill off.
STEP 2: Brush And Scrape The Grates
After the grill has cooled slightly, use a bristle-free grill brush to loosen particles, then scrape grates (top and bottom) to remove residue. For help with stubborn, burnt-on gunk, mix one part vinegar to four parts water and spray or wipe it on grates before scrubbing. You’ll need to heat the grill to high again to burn off the vinegar. Never use oven cleaner or put grates in the dishwasher.
STEP 3: Clean The Inside
Disconnect the propane tank, cover heating elements with foil, apply the vinegar and water mixture on the inside of your gas grill, and scrub it all over with the grill brush. (Excess on grates may also come off with warm soapy water and a thick rag.) Remove the foil, reconnect the propane, and voila!
Repeat these steps every few months to remove grease buildup and help reduce flare-ups. Also, remove and clean your grease tray regularly when the grill is cold.
If you’re grilling at a campsite or tailgate and don’t have a grill brush, use metal tongs with balled-up aluminum foil or a block of wood as a scrubber instead.
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By Nicole Cherie Jones