There’s nothing sweeter than tidying your outdoor space, heating up your grill, and inviting friends and family over for a cookout. Those long afternoons sharing food with loved ones are truly one of life’s greatest gifts. But as any seasoned host will know, the day isn’t over once everyone goes home. Cleaning up takes just as much care and attention as the event itself.
To help get things neat and tidy after grilling out, you'll definitely need an easy method for how to clean grill grates. While caked-on food and grease might look impossible to remove, you can actually make grill grates look good as new with just a few inexpensive household supplies. Baking soda, dish soap, and vinegar—paired with the cleaning power of Viva® Signature Cloth™ paper towels—are all you need to make your grill grates clean and fresh.
We’ve put together a step-by-step guide on how to clean grill grates using Viva®’s simple method, along with other important tips and watch-outs to keep in mind when tackling this task.
It’s important to strike the right balance when cleaning your grill grates, as over-cleaning can remove coatings and cause food to stick.
Our guide will walk you through a deep cleaning method that you should aim to complete once or twice a season, depending on how often you’re using your grill. You’ll know it’s time for a deep clean if you get lots of black char when you’re not grilling at a high temperature.
While you don’t need to deep clean every day, it is important to give your grill a light clean after each use to avoid buildup of food particles and grease. Alongside our step-by-step guide, we’ve also included quick cleaning tips that you can use to help keep your grill grates in check between deep cleans.
Before we dig into Viva®’s simple grill cleaning method, let’s make sure you have all the right supplies on hand. You’ll probably find most of the below in your cleaning cupboard already, but it’s best to double-check before you get started.
Once you’ve gathered all the tools and supplies you need, it’s time to make those grill grates grease-free! Follow each step to the tee to get the best results.
- Turn on your grill to warm up the grates to 250 degrees for about 5 minutes. This will help to loosen baked-on food.
- While the grill is warm, brush and scrape away baked-on food with a nylon (not metal) brush.
- Let your grill grates cool completely, then remove them from the grill and place them on top of one of the garbage bags (either on the ground or on a table).
- In a small bowl, mix together dish soap and baking soda to create a paste. Rub the paste all over the grates using a Viva® Signature Cloth™ paper towel, being sure not to miss any spots.
- Let your grill grates sit with the paste on for 30 minutes. Then, wipe the paste away with a Viva® Signature Cloth™ paper towel.
- Rinse the grill grates with cold water (use a pitcher or your garden hose), then pat dry with a Viva® Signature Cloth™ paper towel.
- In the second garbage bag, mix 2 cups of vinegar and 1 cup of baking soda. Place the grill grates inside and seal (tie up or use rubber band). Leave them to soak overnight.
- Remove the grates from the bag after at least 12 hours and rinse with cold water.
- Wipe away any remaining food debris with a Viva® Signature Cloth™ paper towel, rinse again with cold water, and pat dry.
Now that you’ve deep-cleaned your grill grates, don’t let that hard work go to waste! While you won’t need to complete the full process above every time you use your grill, a light clean after you finish cooking will help your deep clean results last longer. Follow the steps below for more everyday grill cleaning.
With Viva®’s tips in your pocket, you’re almost a fully fledged grill cleaning pro. For the final finish, we’ve put together a run down of the three most common grill cleaning mistakes to watch out for—so you always achieve a next level clean.
By following these deep cleaning and everyday maintenance steps, your grill will always be clean and ready to go— whether you're cooking for your family on a quiet evening, or inviting over guests for a grill-out. Don’t forget to keep a roll of Viva® Signature Cloth™ paper towels on your grill table or shelf to make cleaning up a cinch!