While committed barbecue owners are likely on top of cleaning their grill out regularly, many people will only bring out their BBQ on special occasions. During that time, remnants of a dinner from last summer and a build-up of dust will mean that your barbecue needs a proper clean before it gets used again. Thankfully, as long as you know how to do it properly (and have the right tools for the job), cleaning out your barbecue grill needn’t be a tasking experience. Simply follow our three-step guide to cleaning your grill, and your barbecue will be cooking up a veritable feast in no time at all.
1. Cleaning Your Barbecue Grill
Before you do anything, make sure to consult your grill’s user manual to see if the manufacturer suggests products to either use or avoid in the cleaning process.
To begin, set your grill up and get the barbecue to a high heat. For charcoal-powered barbecues, throw in some new coal and wait for it to reach a red-hot level. For gas-powered barbecues, just turn it up until its at full heat.
With the BBQ now at its highest heat, put the lid back on and leave it to heat for 15-30 minutes. This process is an easy way to burn off, or carbonise, any leftover food particles. This will make them easier to wipe away when it comes to the actual cleaning.
After you’ve left it for a while, switch off the barbecue and allow it to cool down. It should go without saying, but never try to clean your barbecue until it is sufficiently cooled down.
Once it is cool enough, comprehensively scrub the barbecue’s bars with a stainless steel wire brush.
This should be sufficient, but if you’re looking to do a deep clean, remove the bars and wash them in warm water with soap. Avoid using harsh chemicals and try and get a good multi-purpose cleaner that is suitable for barbecues. Always test the cleaning product on a small area of the grill to check it is safe to use. After you’ve washed it, rinse and dry the bars and put a light covering of vegetable oil on them to prevent the grill bars from rusting.
2. Cleaning Drip Trays
Drip trays allow for the collection of ashes and grease arising out of cooking food on the grill, and most modern barbecues will come with such a feature. As with the grill, give the drip tray some time to cool down before trying to clean them.
Pour out the grease (which should now be cold) into a bin. Don’t pour it down the sink, as that won’t be good for the health of your drainage system.
A good tip for cleaning up any leftover grease from a drip try is to use cat litter. Pour some cat litter over the grease and let it sit for an hour or two. The pieces will soak up any oil or grease stains. If the grease has been lying for a while, then gently grind some of the litter into the stains to aid in this process.
After all of that, just wash the tray in some soapy, warm water to finish.
3. Cleaning Lids And Grill Burners
Well done – the hard work is over! Now it’s just time to provide the rest of the barbecue with a quick clean.
Give the inside of the barbecue a little clean using some soapy, warm water, and by scrubbing it with your steel brush.
For those using a gas barbecue, you may want to check the manufacturer’s guidelines to see how to deal with food that has been caught within the burners. Generally, you could try using a pin to pick up and remove the food. However, make sure that the barbecue is completely off, and has cooled, before attempting to do anything like this.
With these three simple steps, your barbecue is now cleaner and healthier – which is better for you too!