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How to Stop Food from Sticking to Your BBQ Grill

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Preparing grilled meat is easy especially if you can prevent food from sticking to the grill. For a chef, there is nothing more annoying than seeing a perfectly seasoned layer of skin coming off due to the stickiness of the grates. If you love grilled meat, you should also understand that it is as important to keep food from sticking to your grates as it is to season the meat.

Here is how you can make your grill nonstick:

Why is food sticking to the grill?

The food sticks to the grill due to three main reasons. In most instances, the grill is not hot to prepare a meal. If there is enough warmth, then your grill is either dirty or there is no oil on the meat.

Proven Solutions to stop food from sticking to the grill

It’s not difficult to prepare the grill for cooking as you just need to follow a few simple steps to ensure a great meal.

Clean the Grill

The food will stick on the grates if you did not clean the grill. As a result, the carbon residue and oil will attach to food particles creating a glue-like substance. You can use a scrub pad, brush, and water to clean the grill when it’s warm. If slates are cold, you’re better off using a scrub pad because it can wipe off the sticking residue better than other cleaning instruments.

Use High-Smoking Point Oil

We all use our favorite cooking oil to grill the meat. Irrespective of the nutrition levels of oil, you should always use cooking oil that has a smoking point above 400 Fahrenheit. A high smoking point ensures that the oil does not evaporate quickly, which means that the meat will grill better without sticking to the grates.

Refined Canola oil has a smoking point above 400 Fahrenheit. Similarly, most sunflower, corn, and palm oils also have high-smoking points. Keep in mind that pouring more oil on the grate will not make things easier as any excess oil will turn into carbon creating a mess. As a safety precaution, you can always use a ThermoPro Food Thermometer to check the temperature of the meat and the oil.

Oiling the Meat

If you’re fed up of all the different methods, experts recommend oiling the meat instead of the grates. Before grilling, use a paper towel to dry the meat before oiling it with your favorite cooking oil. Afterward, place the meat on the warm grill, which will make the oil fill the pits and other areas of the metal.

For another quick fix, you can also try wiping the grates with oil and then heat them to a warm temperature. Then, remove the grates to let them cool to the surrounding temperature. Once everything has cooled down, it’s time to oil the meat and put it on the grill for a better cooking experience.

Using Cooking Spray

It is common to hear about the qualities of cooking spray, which often seems better than using regular cooking oil. In reality, most cooking sprays are just a marketing gimmick as they all use high smoking point oils making you feel that they’re better than regular oil.

There is no evidence to prove that cooking sprays are any better than your regular high smoking point oil. In fact, cooking spray uses highly inflammable materials that can easily catch fire causing serious burns and accident. It’s much better to use normal cooking oil to ensure a smoother cooking experience without accidents.

Pre-Heat the Grill

preheat the grill

To stop the meat from sticking to the grill, always preheat the grill. Ideally, you want to hear the steaming sizzling sound once the meat is placed on the grate. The sizzle ensures that there is enough moisture in the air to prevent protein from sticking to the surface. The moisture caused by the steam also acts as a barrier between the surface and the meat preventing them from gluing together.

How to Keep Steak from Sticking to the Grill?

keep steak from sticking to grill
There is nothing more agonizing than seeing the exterior coating of the meat coming off when flipping the steak. The outer seasoned coating separates from the meat releasing nutritious juices that are vital to a healthy and nutritious stake.

Here are four proven steps to prevent the steak from sticking to the grill:

As a first step, use a wire grill brush or a scrub to clean the grill after warming the grates. Using the grill brush will take off even the most hardened and sticky materials from the grill. The end result will be a clean grill ready for the roast.

It is also common for individuals to use chemicals to clean the grill. Using chemicals is always hazardous to health; therefore, you should never use the chemical substance to clean the plates.

Once the grill is clean, apply a vegetable or olive oil to the grates to prevent the steak from sticking to the grill. You don’t need to preheat the grill before applying the coating of oil. The oil will automatically create a barrier, which will keep steaks from sticking.

If you’re using a non-stick oil spray on the grill, it is always important to remember that such sprays are highly inflammable. Always use non-stick oil spray when the grill is turned off and the grates are cold. The non-stick spray can be used as an alternative to regular oil coating.

If your steak still sticks to the grill, then use an aluminum foil. Placing your steak on the aluminum foil will prevent the steak from attaching itself to the grates. Using an aluminum foil should be the last option because it may not give your steak that charred brownish look, which comes naturally when the steak is placed directly over the grill.

How to Keep Burgers from Sticking to the Grill?

Unlike steaks, burger patties have a distinct chemical composition requiring different procedures to keep them from sticking to the grill. If you want to grill the perfect burger, follow these steps to ensure that the patty stays off the grill.
keep burger from sticking to grill
Use a cooking oil or non-stick spray before putting the patty on the grill. As recommended, only use non-stick spray on a cold grill as the spray can burst into flames when used on a burning grill. If you want to make your grill non-sticky naturally, cut off an onion into half. Rub the inside of the onion to the grill when it’s warm.

You can use a fork to support the rubbing process. Once done, the onion residue will act as a natural barrier between the patty and the grill. In fact, you can use the other half to make sandwiches with grilled onions. Onions are a good choice as the vegetable is used in grilled burger recipe offering the burger a distinct flair.

If you’re not comfortable using an onion, try using a paper towel dipped in oil. As a precaution, support the paper towel with a tong as excess oil dripping from the towel can create a flame. Drag the oil-dipped paper towel on the grill to stop burger patties sticking to the grill.

Experts also recommend that you should never flip a burger patty too quickly because a good sear will help the patty from sticking to the surface.

How to Keep Chicken from Sticking to the Grill?

A chicken needs to be dried and seasoned before applying olive or canola oil. In contrast to steak and burger patty, it’s relatively trickier to grill a whole chicken due to the inappropriate size and shape of the bird. Under these circumstances, you’re better off grilling parts of the chicken to make sure that each part gets its fair share of heat.
Irrespective of the type of chicken, always put the chicken skin side down first. Place the chicken where the skin was removed because the smoother skin will not stick to the grates as opposed to the boney side. Just like the steak and the burger, don’t try to flip the chicken too early. If it sticks while flipping to the other side, wait for another minute before attempting again.

Before grilling the chicken, allow it to cool at room temperature before putting it on the grates. Don’t try to put a cold chicken on a hot grill because the temperature difference will make the chicken stick to the grates and peel off the chicken skin.

If you follow these suggestions, you’ll not face the problem, anymore. Remember, you can get rid of the problem by rubbing the oil to the meat and cleaning the grill on a regular basis. Like a good chef, you should also ensure that the grill is preheated before placing the meat on the grill. By following these suggestions, you will always get a sizzling hot charred meat that we all love to taste.

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