Grilling was at one time reserved for the summer months, but preparing meals on the grill now takes place all year long. With the grill getting so much use, it is important to know how to clean a grill in order to get the best performance from it and most importantly, the best food.
Regular cleanings will make the grill easier to clean in the future and cleanings will not take as long. Cleaning a grill is not difficult and takes only a little time and effort. It does not matter whether it is a charcoal grill or a gas grill, the time and effort are about the same. Either way, a clean grill will deliver a better burn and better taste.
For a charcoal grill, the first step is to remove the cooking grate. The grate should be soaked in warm water with a little soap. After disposing of left over coal ash, the coal grate comes out so that the inside of the grill can be cleaned with soapy water. The grill should then be rinsed and allowed to dry. When the cooking grate has finished soaking, a stiff wire brush can be used to remove any residue from the grate. The grate can then be rinsed, dried and put back on the grill. Cooking oil or spray can be applied to the interior grill surfaces to make them easier to clean in the future. This process should usually take place at least a day before the grill is to be used so that the grill has plenty of time to air dry. The next time it is used an extra five minutes of heating will get rid of any remaining chemicals that might be left from the cleaning. After this initial extra heating time has passed, the grill is ready to go.
A gas grill requires a bit more teardown for a good cleaning. The cooking grate receives the same treatment as the charcoal grill cooking grate. With a gas grill, the burner needs to be exposed. If there is a flame shield over the burner, it will need to be removed as will any rocks or briquettes. Care should be taken to not dislodge the burner while any debris is removed from around it. Should any of the gas jets be clogged, these jets should be gently cleaned in order to reopen them. Rocks or briquettes should be brushed off and soapy water can be used to clean the flame shield as well as the inside of the grill. After rinsing and drying, the grill can be put back together and given the cooking oil/spray treatment. A full day of drying out should be allowed and then after some extra heating time for burnoff of any chemicals, the gas grill will also be good to go.
Food cooked on the grill has a unique, flavorful taste. This taste can be attributed to the skills of the grillmaster as well as to the preparation of the food beforehand. However, a clean grill provides a better burn that also contributes to the taste of the food. Regular cleanings of charcoal or gas grills involving minimal time and effort will result in grilling experiences to be enjoyed by all.