Having a dirty grill is the last thing you want to worry about before setting up a beautiful barbeque. While grill grates can be cleaned well with a brush, they can sometimes be cumbersome and even dangerous, if the bristles happen to fall out and get into your food. Here are some of the most amazing tips on how to clean a grill grate without a brush that you will simply love to use at home!
Why is it better to clean your grill grate without a brush?
For obvious hygiene reasons, it is important to keep your barbeque grill spick and span at all times, especially before and after you grill. While most people opt for using a grill brush, the bristles of the brush might sometimes dislodge and even get into your food. This can be extremely dangerous. Finding easy ways to clean your grill grate without using a brush is exactly what you will learn about in this article!
How to clean a grill grate using vinegar and ammonia
As it does in so many cases, vinegar and ammonia once again come to the rescue when you decide to clean your grill grate without using any grill brush. Here is how you can do it:
- Remove your grill grates from the barbeque and place them inside a trash bag.
- Put 3 cups of ammonia, 3 cups of white vinegar and 1 cup of baking soda into the trash bag along with the grill grate.
- Let it soak for a few hours (if the stains and grime are very stubborn, allow it to soak for 24 hours), and then rinse it off with warm water.
- Dry the grill grates well so that they don’t rust.
How to clean a grill grate using aluminum foil
For this method, you can choose to either re-use the aluminum foil you used for your cooking, or you can choose to use new aluminum foil. Here is how you can do it:
- Take some aluminum foil (it can be unused or used) and ball them up.
- Using your barbeque tongs, hold the aluminum foil balls and use them to scrub the grill grates. Ensure that the grill grates are not as hot as this would melt the aluminum foil.
- The aluminum foil acts as a natural scrubber and can remove most of the dirt, grime, and residue from your grill grates without having to use a grill brush.
How to clean grill grates with onion
This might sound like something straight out of a magic trick book, but an onion can actually work wonders to clean your grill grate without the use of a brush. The acidic enzymes that seep out of the onion work like magic to break down the grease and residue on your grill grate. The onion is not harsh or abrasive, making it the perfect replacement for any brush. Here is how you can do it:
- This method works best when the grill grate is still hot, so make sure you warm up your grill for a while before using this method.
- Cut an onion into half, use a barbeque fork to pierce into the onion on its convex side, so that the half cut side of the onion is facing outwards.
- Making sure to keep your hands and arms safe (you can even wear protective gear for safety reasons), use the barbeque fork and the half onion to scrub the grill grates.
- Any oil, grime, food residue and stains will be broken down naturally without being too abrasive on your grill grates.
- Once the grill grates have cooled down, rinse them off so that the smell of onions does not stay on your grill grates. Make sure you dry off your grill grates properly otherwise it might cause rusting.
How to clean a grill grate using gravel or stones
Cleaning your grill grates using more dirt (gravel, stones or pebbles) might seem counterintuitive, however, this method can actually work really really well. Here is how to do it:
- Remove your grill grate and place it on the gravel or on stones.
- Using your hands, massage the stones onto the grill grates. If you wish to protect your hands, you can wear protective gloves while doing this.
- Flip the grill grate and repeat the same on the opposite side. This will clean the top as well as the bottom of the grill grate and rid it of any grime and residue.
- Using soap and warm water, rinse off your grill grates and dry them well, and they will be as good as new!
How to clean a grill grate using a steamer
If you happen to have a portable steamer in your home, you can use it as a great alternative to a grill brush. Here is how you can do it:
- Remove your grill grates from the barbeque and place it on the ground.
- Using the portable steamer, target any areas where you see grime or dirt and would like to remove it.
- The steam works great to dislodge any grime. You can use a soft sponge, a cloth, the aluminum foil ball that we mentioned above, or even the half cut onion to scrub the stubborn residue off the grill grates.
- Dry the grates well before using again.
How to prevent food from sticking to grill grates
Of course, the best piece of advice you can get would be on how you can prevent your grill grates from becoming dirty or having grime and residue stuck on them.
- Clean off your grill grates after every use without waiting for too long, as the food residue can get stuck stubbornly.
- Once you are done the grilling, apply some oil to your grill grates immediately. Then, you can easily clean off the grates using a paper towel and get rid of most of the grime.
- Use a potato. Yes, you are reading this correctly. Cut a potato in half. Stab a fork on the convex side on one of the halves and same as the onion method for cleaning, gently run over the grill grates. The starch from the potato will create a non-stick cover on the grats.
These simple tips should help you clean your grill grates easily without the need of a brush, and also prevent your grates from getting too sticky or dirty anymore. If you change your mind and want to go for the best brush for cleaning your grill grates, here are our top 5 grill brushes you can find today!
You may also want to read: Best cleaner for grill grates!