5. The Grate Debate
There is a lot of confusion when it comes to grill grates. Should they be perfectly clean? Should you oil them every cook? What should you clean them with? There are lots of heated debates on the internet concerning grill grates and I’m here to tell you the right answer is…somewhere in the middle. If you cook often, then using a high-quality brush at the beginning and end of your cooking is just about all you need to do.
Take the Time to Clean and Re-Oil
Once every couple of months if you notice more build-up happening, then take the time to do a complete clean of the grates and then re-oil. The reality is that unless you have cooked something exceptionally messy the trusty grill brush used on a hot grill takes care of most of the mess, then follow that up with the brush on the cold grill before you light it the next time. If you do this you will have a grill that is pretty nonstick and doesn’t require hours and hours of cleaning every time you use it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Still have questions that our top five summer grilling tips didn’t answer? We’ve pulled together some of the most frequent questions we hear regarding summer barbecuing. Use these answers to make your meals even tastier.
How Can I Get the Best Sear?
Beyond paying attention to those hotspots we mentioned, make sure to follow these steps to get the best sear on your meat:
- Use paper towels to dry off your meat before grilling. It won’t sear when it’s wet.
- Let the grill heat up sufficiently before putting the meat on. If you do it too early, you won’t get the sear you want.
- Don’t move the meat around a lot. Let it sit until you are ready to turn it.
How Can I Make the Best Grilled Burgers Ever?
Grilling burgers is an art form, and you can perform like a gifted artist when you follow these tips for grilling:
- Eliminate the swollen middle that hamburgers can develop when you grill them by making a small dent in the middle. This will help the patty remain flat throughout the cooking.
- Don’t squeeze the ground beef too much when you form the patty. This will lead to a less-tender, tougher burger.
How Can I Add Extra Flavor to Any Meat I’m Cooking?
Instead of using a brush to oil your grill, cut an onion in half and use it to apply the oil to the grill. This will leave behind a faint taste that will add to whatever marinade or sauce you put on your meat.
Also, when you add salt to your meat, as we advised above, do it about 30 minutes before you put it onto the grill. This gives the meat plenty of time to season.
What Are Some Things I Should Avoid Doing When I Grill?
We know, we know — you really want to push down on your meat with your spatula. It gives you that grilling feeling. Resist the urge! That moment of satisfaction can actually backfire on you. When you push down on the meat, it leaches out the fat, which means less flavor for your meat.
You should also try not to take something straight from the refrigerator onto the grill unless you want to give it a rare sear. Meat tastes and cooks better when you bring it closer to room temperature. Remove it from the fridge about a half hour before you plan to cook it.
You also don’t want to overcook the meat. You may want to leave it on the Grilla until it looks perfect, but you will end up overcooking it because the meat continues to roast for a bit when you bring it off the grill. And don’t even think about cutting into it right away. Let it sit a few minutes for all the juiciness to redistribute.
Excited to put these barbecue cooking tips to action? Fire up the Grilla: Every meal can use some smoky goodness.