Grill aficionados know that cooking on the grill adds significant flavor to both meat and vegetables. However, cleaning the grill is much less fun than cooking with it. Although some chefs choose to put off grill cleaning, the truth is that you need to clean your grill after every use, both to keep your grill in good working order and to prevent caked-on grease and smoke from damaging the flavor of your food.
Ideally, you need to clean every part of your grill after cooking. This includes the grill rack or grate as well as the heat source. Charcoal grills need the ashes swept out and the charcoal area wiped clean, and gas grills need special attention paid to the burners. Do not forget to wipe the grease and smoke from the outside of your grill, including the grill lid and the grill's legs.
There are numerous tools available to help make your grill cleaning easier. A combination grill cleaning tool uses steam to loosen up grease and food particles while including a scraper and brush function to rake them away. If you get one of these combination tools, make sure to have plenty of replacement brushes on hand; using old, clogged brushes means spreading around old grime instead of cleaning off new messes.
Removable grill parts, such as the grill lid, easily go into the sink to soak. You cannot soak any grill components that are related to a power source or heat source, but the lid, drip trays and any removable gratings easily go into the sink until the grit and grease is loosened enough to clean.
After cleaning your grill, give the entire grill a wipe down with a soft rag, to remove any last bits of grease or dirt that remain.
Grill cleaning is part of the grill cooking experience, whether you like it or not. Do not compromise your grill by putting off cleaning; make sure you clean your grill after every cooking session to keep it in good condition and ensure you do not clog up the heating components or ventilation. A clean grill cooks the best meat, so take the time to clean your grill thoroughly after each use.