How To Clean Rusty Cast Iron Grill Grates

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How To Clean Rusty Charcoal Grill Grates

How to deep clean rusty cast iron grill grates!

If you store your BBQ outdoors, you may notice that the charcoal grates have become rusty over time. Rust on the charcoal grill not only looks unappealing, but it can also ruin the taste of your delicious grilled food. The good news is cleaning rust of the grill grates is fairly easy and there is no need for harsh chemicals. Here are our favourite natural cleaning methods to remove rust from your grill grates.

Baking Soda Ensures Easier Cleaning

Make a paste from a quarter cup of baking soda and a quarter cup of water. Apply a thin mixture with a wire brush on the grill and leave it for 15 minutes.

Rinse well. Then wipe the cast grates with a paper towel and place them over a hot grill for at least 15 minutes to burn any remaining paste or food.

Use Steel Wool Scrubber

The rust should not stress you anymore. Get fine steel wool and use it to scrape off the rust on your grill. Once the rust clears off, wash your cast iron grill grate with warm water, bristle brush and dish soap. Scrub your cast iron grill grates until it gets clean.

Water accelerates rust. Thats the reason why you should never leave your cast iron grill grates wet. Use a clean dish towel to dry your cast iron. Proper seasoning is vital since it protects your cast iron from rust. So once your cast iron dries up, coat it using vegetable oil. Coat the bottom and the handles too.

Place your cast iron on the rack of your oven and ensure that its upside down. Since the cast iron grill has some oil, it will drop off to the oven once you heat. To avoid that, place an aluminum foil at the bottom rack. It will catch the oil drips. Let your cast iron heat for an hour at a temperature of 350 degrees F. After an hour, let your cast iron cool. Its time to grill your meat.

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Season The Grates Again

After cleaning, you need to season the grill grates gain. To do this step, heat the grills at 350 to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. At this moment, you need to apply oil on the grill grates and place them inside the oven. Repeat this step after half an hour or so until you see black grill grates once again.

How To Clean Cast Iron Grill Grates For The Next Use

How to Clean a Cast Iron Grill

Cast iron cooking grates are sturdy and efficient heat conductors. They leave impressive grill marks on steaks and chops. Best of all, they can last a lifetime with the proper care.

If youve shied away from using cast iron in the past, were here to tell you that theyre actually very easy to care for. In this guide, well clue you in on all our best tips on how to clean cast iron grill grates.


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After Cleaning Your Grates Make Sure To Season Them

Cast-iron grates must be seasoned before keeping them away, regardless of the method used to clean them. Cooking with cast iron requires oil or baking fats into the holes to cause it to hydrolyze, which in turn creates an impermeable layer that resists corrosion and eventually acquires a non-stick look.

If you just cleansed your grates with such a grill cleaner, or youve done one of the more in-depth cleaning procedures indicated above, but still youll want to add two more layers of coating? Is it possible? The answer is yes! You apply any cooking oil to season your grates. In our recommendation, try to use Crisbee seasoning for cast-iron cooking equipment. It is made from soybean oil, palm oil, and beeswax, and this seasoning is mainly made for use with cast iron.

Is Vinegar Safe To Use On My Grill

Theres no reason why you cant. An old-fashioned method of cleaning grill grate is to soak in baking soda and vinegar for several hours. It deoxidizes any remaining rust, and the results are stunning. Most would suggest allowing it to rest 24 hours at room temperature or even for a matter of days, whether you have the time, and then rinsing them with water and dishwashing soap and carefully drying them to remove any remaining debris.

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How To Prevent Rust From Cast Iron Grill Grates

Prevention is the best way to keep your grill grates from rusting. After each use, clean and dry your cast iron grates. Place them in the oven or back of a hot grill until they heat up, wiping dry with paper towel if necessary to remove any debris stuck on the surface. When the grate has heated enough that it starts to smoke and is just short of glowing red, take it out and spray it liberally with cooking oil using an aerosol can or brush. Let both sides get misted/painted evenly then carefully place them back on the grill or in oven for one hour at 450 degrees Fahrenheit . At the end of this time, take them out and wipe dry with a paper towel. Your cast iron grill grates are now ready for storage without rusting. Remove them from the oven or grill and let cool then immediately spray with cooking oil, set aside until youre ready to use them again.

There is one drawback to this method of preventing rust from cast iron grill grates. It makes it more difficult to clean your grate when youre done cooking because most of the debris will have been removed when setting up for preventive care so theyll need a longer soak in warm water before using a brush on them. I prefer a better solution which will be discussed next but if prevention is your aim heres what works best

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Option #: Oven Cleaner

How to Clean Rusted Cast Iron Grill Grates

Oven cleaner is a cleaning agent that usually contains lye, an alkaline solution thats strong enough to unclog drains. Incidentally, it will also remove a heavy buildup of rust from your cast iron grill grates.

In addition to oven cleaner, youll need a few heavy-duty garbage bags, protective gloves, safety glasses, and a container large enough to hold the grill grates. Once youve thoroughly coated the grates with the cleaner, seal them tightly in the garbage bags and place them in the container. Store the container in a warm, safe place for two days. Be sure that the container is stored in a spot where no children or pets can access it.

After two days, remove the grates and rinse them in hot soapy water to remove the residue.

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How Can I Remove Rust From A Flat Top Grill

Assuming youre talking about a metal grill, there are a few ways to remove rust. One way is to use a chemical rust remover. This is a corrosive substance that will eat away at the rust. Be sure to follow the directions on the packaging, and wear gloves and eye protection when handling the chemical. Another way is to use sandpaper or a wire brush to scrape off the rust. This will take some elbow grease, but its a fairly simple process. Just be sure to scrub in the same direction as the grain of the metal to avoid damaging the surface. If the rust is particularly stubborn, you may need to resort to using a power sander or grinder. This will take more time and effort, but it will remove the rust. Just be sure to go slowly and be careful not to damage the metal underneath. Once youve removed the rust, be sure to protect the metal from future rusting by painting or sealing it.

Cleaning Blackstone Griddle With Salt

If you own a Blackstone griddle, you know that its a great tool for cooking up delicious food. But like any cooking surface, it needs to be properly cared for and cleaned. Heres a step-by-step guide to cleaning your Blackstone griddle with salt.1. Preheat your griddle. This will help loosen any debris thats stuck to the surface. 2. Spread a layer of salt over the griddle.3. Use a stiff brush to scrub the salt into the surface of the griddle. 4. Rinse the griddle with hot water. 5. Wipe it down with a clean, damp cloth.6. Repeat steps 2-5 if necessary. 7. Season the griddle with a light layer of cooking oil before storing. Following these steps will help keep your Blackstone griddle in top condition. And its an easy process that only takes a few minutes to complete.

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What Is The Best Oil For Seasoning Cast Iron Grates

After some research, the following oils seem to be what people consider the best. Avocado oil and Safflower oil have the highest smoke points. Which is the temperature when the oil begins to smoke. The smoke point is essential to seasoning.

Although, remember you can use any oil to season your cast iron. Vegetable oil is often used even though it only has a smoke point of 400 degrees F.

  • Avocado oil Smoke point 520 degrees F
  • Safflower oil Smoke point 510 degrees F
  • Peanut oil Smoke point of 450 degrees F

These three seem to be the top choices for seasoning cast iron. The temperature of these three oils can reach the smoke point of 450 degrees Fahrenheit or above. The higher the smoke point, the better.

Some people use grease to add extra flavor for seasoning a barbecue grill, charcoal grill, and gas grill grates. If you use flavored grease, put down a piece of aluminum foil to help catch any mess.

Deep Clean Method Using Oven Cleaner

How to Clean Grill Grates

Grates that are severely corroded and need a thorough cleaning may not be cleaned using the methods we mentioned beforehand. It is now necessary for you to find a foolproof method of eliminating all traces of corrosion or solid crumbs from your castiron grates before replacing them with new ones. What we recommend is you start preparing an oven cleaner, garbage bags, and somewhere safe to put them whereas the cleaner does its work, the most efficient method to get this done.

Choose a well-ventilated space, then spray the grates with oven cleaning. Remember that oven cleaners contain dangerous chemicals, so you dont want to get them in your lungs or eyes while cleaning. Do not apply it in an enclosed space. Place your grates in garbage bags and close them tight once after oil you apply some cleaner into them. Keep an eye out for any spots where air might be seeping out.

To ensure that rust build-up on your grates is dissolved, keep them rest for 72 hours or, if your oven cleaning manufacturer suggests, more longer. Keep the bags out of sight and out of reach of curious hands.

After several days, get the grates out from the garbage bags and clean the grates in hot soapy water in the sink. Before storing your grates, make sure they are thoroughly dry and then re-season them.

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Is Grilling On Rusted Grates Healthy

If you have no other choice, then absolutely, but its best not to. Taking iron oxide orally for a short period will not hurt you, but regularly consuming it will have negative consequences for your digestive tract and other organs of your body.

Grilling on rusty grates may be acceptable in an emergency, but only once or twice. The following time, ensure everything is thoroughly cleaned before firing up the grill.

Why Does Cast Iron Grill Grates Rust

There are several reasons why cast iron grill grates rust. The first reason is that you are coating the cast iron with oil to keep it from rusting. If you were to look up seasoning on wikipedia, this is what it would say about seasoning cast iron:

Seasoning is the process of treating the surface of a cooking vessel with a stick-resistant coating formed from polymerized fat and oil . It is also known as fondant enamel or simply fondant, though these terms have fallen out of favor due to their ambiguity. Seasoning is typically achieved by rubbing fat or oil into the porous surface using a paper towel or cloth until an even, matte finish appears. This treatment coats the pores of carbon steel and cast iron cookware with a blend of polymerized fat or oil, which helps prevent food from sticking during cooking.

The second reason why cast iron grill grates rust is that over time the seasoning will wear away . If you do not properly clean your cast iron after each use, seasoning can rub off leaving the metal exposed to moisture and air. This exposure causes condensation inside the pores of the metal and results in pitting and flaking of the metals surface. Eventually, enough coating may flake off so that holes form through which heat escapes, causing hotspots on your food.

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A Few Tips On Maintaining Your Charcoal Grill

  • Check your ash catcher: Empty it before you cook. It will make life so much easier and will keep the ash in a much more manageable quantity.
  • Brush the grill grates before grilling: Preheat the grill, and brush the grate. You dont have to do a full cleaning every time you cook, but it is nice to get as much of the last grill session off your grate before you start grilling tonights dinner.
  • Oil the grate: When the grate is hot, put oil on a rag, hold the rag with your tongs, and oil the grates. That way, food wont stick and youll have a much easier time removing it from the grate.
  • Brush the grates after grilling: Just like when you do before you start cooking. The grates are hot, the food is gone and you have a perfect opportunity to remove anything that may be left behind. Think of it as a gift to your future self when its grill cleaning time.

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How To Clean Cast Iron Grill Grates If Rusty Or Just After Grilling

How To Clean and Season Rusted Cast Iron Grill Grates

Cast iron grill grates can last more than a lifetime if they are adequately cared for. This means regular cleaning, oiling, and ongoing general maintenance and care. Here are the four most effective, easy-to-use ways to restore your CI grates to their former glory.

There are many reasons to purchase cast iron grill grates. They are incredibly durable and if looked after properly, will likely outlive your grill. Theyre also able to retain an even heat during cooking and produce fantastic grill marks on your food.

On top of that, with continuous use and with routine seasoning they will eventually become non-stick similar to a cast iron pan.

However, just as cast iron pots and pans can rust in your home, cast iron grill grates can also become rusty and unusable if not properly cleaned and stored.

So in this article, were going to explore routine maintenance, how to clean cast iron grill grates and how you can keep your investment looking good and operating properly.


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Cleaning Grill Grates To Remove Rust Build Up

While cleaning a grill with a commercial rust remover is always an option, this may not be something you have on hand at any given moment.

Luckily, there are many items you have around your home that clean away leftover food and get rust off a grill efficiently. Many of these items are not only effective cleaners but cost-efficient as well.

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After that last step of applying a coat of vegetable oil, youve got a nice opportunity to season your cast iron grates. Its important here to understand what exactly your grates are made of are they pure cast iron or porcelain enameled cast iron?

If youre working with porcelain enameled cast iron grates, its not vital that you season your grates as the porcelain enamel finish accomplishes much of the benefits youd gain with a seasoning.

If your grates are pure cast iron, its a good idea to season frequently, as the positive effect of seasoning compounds over time to form an easy release, non-stick, anti-rust cooking surface for you to work with over time.

If your grill is still hot after cleaning, you should be good to go. If its cooled off, to properly season you should run the temperature back up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit or higher to get the heat to a level where it will polymerize the oil.

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What Youll Need To Clean Your Grill

The simplest way to clean a rusty grill is with salt and vinegar. Thats right standard chip seasoning will get your grill backing in working order.

Before you get started, its best to assemble everything you need for the cleaning. Once you get cleaning, its going get very messy indeed, and the last thing you want is to be leaving rusty handprints all over the kitchen cupboards.

To clean your grill with salt and vinegar, you will need:

  • 1 cup of regular table salt
  • 2 cups of white vinegar
  • 1 heavy-duty garbage bag
  • Disposable cloths or rags

The given amounts of salt and vinegar are for cleaning one reasonably standard grill grate, so if you are doing more than one, just add the same amounts again per additional grate.

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