Nothing beats a good BBQ. The succulent taste of grilled chicken, the alluring smell of steak cooking on charcoal – heavenly.
It’s not just the food either, grilling can be a social event, bringing family and friends together round the barbecue. With spring just round the corner, it’s almost time for people to start dusting off their grills and get cooking again.
Before you get busy enjoying your soon-to-be delicious food though, think about the last time you cleaned your barbecue.
Whether you’ve just brought your grill out of storage or you’ve been using it all year round, taking good care of it is vital, and the first step to doing so is giving the entire thing a thorough clean.
So get out your rubber gloves, put on an apron, grab a stiff brush and a bucket, and get ready to get very dirty as you follow these steps on how to clean your BBQ grill.
Cleaning the Grate
A clean grill will cook better and last longer, so this easy to follow process is well worth carrying out at least once a month. The grill grate is of course going to be one of the messiest parts of your grill, as it’s the only piece that comes in direct contact with your food, luckily cleaning it is relatively quick and easy and the rewards are instantly obvious.
Some people like to clean with the grill heated up, as it helps burn off any waste substances that have attached themselves to the metal of the grate, it’s up to you whether you want to do this but please be careful if you do. If you’re in hurry, or would prefer not to heat the BBQ, you can clean with the grill still cold. Take your stiff brush, preferably wire, and go to town on scrubbing the grate.
It’s important to note that you should keep the brush as dry as possible, because if the ash at the bottom of the grill gets wet it can become incredibly tough to remove, making your job a lot harder.
After you’ve got as much off as possible you can leave the grill to soak in a bucket of warm soapy water to remove the remaining dirt; just be sure to dry it thoroughly before putting it back on the grill.
Getting the Ash out
As anyone that’s ever cooked on a BBQ before will know, the whole process produces a lot of ash. Whether your grill has an ash catcher or not, it’s important to remove any grates or briquettes and brush away any ash that will no doubt collect at the bottom of your grill.
You can use a dustpan and brush or even a hoover to do this easily, just be careful not to knock anything out of place if you’re dusting a gas grill, and make sure everything is back in its rightful position before you start cooking again.
Cleaning the Grill
Charcoal grills are usually much easier to clean than their electric counterparts, as they’re much easier to deconstruct. Many people believe that a light coating of dirt on the inside of the grill helps to keep the heat in; so when it comes to cleaning out the insides, it’s your decision how far you want to go.
Use your stiff brush to scrape off any excess dirt, and be sure to clean out all the dust that falls when you begin cleaning.
As the darkness disappears and you begin to see the original colour of your grills insides, be sure to check the chassis for any signs of rust. Most rust can be removed easily with a simple scouring pad or wire brush, but if it’s began to erode the grill then it may be time to invest in a new one, and take better care of it next time.
As mentioned earlier, gas grills are a little more intricate than the charcoal equivalents, so cleaning them may take slightly longer. The process is more or less the same, there’s just more to it.
Some gas grills will have a clean function on them. This heats the grill to burn off any excess food waste. Whilst this is a great first step to take in the cleaning process, this isn’t thorough enough to properly clean your grill.
You should disconnect the gas before you begin to take your grill apart, but once that’s done you should simply work your way through all the parts of the grill, removing, cleaning and washing each segment as you go. When you get to your gas burners, check that nothings clogging up their air ways, and clean them inside with a thin brush if you can.
Don’t forget to replace any hot rocks or briquettes that are too badly burnt. Once you’re done, dry everything off and place it all back in its rightful place. So there you have it, you’re now ready to cook on to your hearts delight on your sparkling clean grill.
This article is written on behalf of the Garden Gift Shop, home of the perfect gifts for all gardens.