How to Clean Grill Grates With Vinegar

how to clean grill grates with vinegar

There are a number of reasons why cleaning a grill is important such as preventing the accumulation of food that could result in the growth of harmful mold,  not to mention food cooked on clean grill grates really does taste better. Cleaning grill grates doesn’t have to be a tedious task provided you  don’t allow food and grease to accumulate by simply cleaning the grill every time you use it. You can do this with grill cleaning agents that make the process less of a chore using ordinary household items such as vinegar that are very effective. This post going to show you how to  clean grill grates with vinegar.

Vinegar is one of the best home cleaning agents and works just as well for cleaning and maintaining  grill grates in good condition year round by efficiently cutting through grease and food.

Step 1

Mix equal parts vinegar and water and pour the mixture in a spray bottle.

Step 2

I usually find that scrapping food off my grates  is usually easier when the grates are hot. This is because any food or grease left on my grates is softened by the heat which in turn makes scraping off easier. So I usually turn on my gas grill on for about 10 minutes to get the grates hot before I can start scrapping off.

Step 3.

While the grill grates are still hot, (careful not to touch the hot grill grates with bare hands) spray the grill grates with the vinegar and water mixture then let it soak for a few minutes before you start scrapping. I use the great scrape for this and I find that it does the job really well. Crumpled up aluminum foil could also do the trick.

Step 4

Once you’re done scraping, take a fresh bucket of water, deep a clean cloth in the bucket and wring it out. Wipe down the grates to get rid of the tiny remaining bits and the solution from your grates and replace them back.

You will find I did not tell you to use a wire brush for the scraping as I DO NOT recommend using a wire brush to scrub your grill grates. In case you didn’t know, wire brushes are growing concern and people are being discouraged from using them.
This is because the bristles in the wire brushes result in serious injury. There are cases of bristles being lodged in people’s throats resulting in severe pain when swallowing requiring operations to get the bristles out. There have also been cases of internal injuries due to unintentional ingestion of wire brush bristles which caused severe abdominal pain. Now, you do not want bristles perforating your throat, intestines and who knows what else, do you? All it takes is wire bristle dislodging from the wire cleaning brush sticking to the grill grate then your food before finding its way into your body. Absolutely stay away from wire brushes!
And anyway, its not like there aren’t other alternatives to wire brushes.
  1. Crumpled up aluminum foil-The I mentioned earlier is a great one for scraping food of grill grates.
  2. Grill Floss- This brush has a metal rod that swivels on the end that wraps around each individual grill grates scraping off all the way around. It requires that each rod be cleaned individually, kinda kike teeth flossing.
  3. Grill Stone- Made from recycled glass, grill stones are excellent in getting tough residues off grill grates.
  4. The Great Scrape– This is on of my favorite easy to use alternatives. Works best when the grill grates are hot by passing it front to back using slow firm pressure. It is made from hardwood so it won’t damage or scratch your grates

If you are still having difficulty scraping off the food;

Soaking Grill Grates With Vinegar is the way to go.

Sometimes just scrapping off may not do the trick if you have stubborn food that just won’t come off. Of the best ways to deal with this is to soak your grill grates in vinegar solution.

So once again mix vinegar and some hot water in a container large enough to fully accommodate the grates perfectly. Then, deep the grates in the solution ensuring the grates are completely submerged and let them soak for at least an hour.

Scrubbing off any remaining food particles which should now be easier

Rinse the grates to get the solution off the grates and let them dry before replacing them. Clean and dazzling is what you get when you clean grill grates with vinegar.


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