Grill Grates

grill grate filled with meat

There are several materials that are used for grill grates. Here are a few of the most used grill grate materials and information on the best way to use them, how to clean them, and all their pros and cons,

Stainless Steel Grill Grates

stainless steel grill grate on a charcoal grill

Stainless steel grill grates are probably the most used ones. The reason is that they are fairly cheap to make. There are differences in quality depending on the stainless steel gauges.


  • Heat up fast
  • No rust when maintained
  • Easy to clean


  • Don’t retain heat
  • Won’t last too long
  • Not very non-stick

How To Clean Stainless Steel Grill Grates

Cleaning can be done with a hard bristle brush as soon as you are done cooking. Try to brush both sides.

Cast Iron Grill Grates

cast iron grill grates on a grill

Cast Iron has been used for and still is used in many grills.


  • Retains heat very well
  • Great for grill marks
  • Last a long time


  • Heavy
  • Can rust fast
  • Harder to clean

How To Clean Cast Iron Grill Grates

Right after using your grill brush the grates with a stiff but soft brush on both sides.

Enameled Grill Grates

porcelain coated grill grates on a gas grill

Enameled grill grates are most of the time made of cast iron before coating.


  • Non-stick
  • Retains heat
  • Easy to clean


  • Coating can crack
  • Heavy

How To Clean Enameled Coated Grill Grates

Because of the easy-to-scratch surface, a soft bristle grill brush is the best option.

DIY Materials For Grill Grates

Basically, you can use many materials for DIY grill grates and I have seen many different materials that have been used for that. As long as they are metal they all can be used.


  • Cheap
  • Easy to adjust to the size


  • Won’t last too long
  • Can stick

How To Clean DIY Grill Grates

This one is not easy to answer since it depends on the used material. However, since most of the time they are made of metal scraping them right after usage is the best way.

A good example of DIY grill grates are the ones made of expanded metal and if you built your own grill or have a very large grill this is a great choice.

Replacement Grill Grates

Many brands offer replacement grill grates for most of their models. You can also order replacement grill grates from other companies that offer many options such as infrared grill grates.

Infrared Grill Grates

This is a type of grill grate that is becoming popular because of the advantage of getting very hot. My experience with my Char-Broil X-200 grill to go infrared is that they are great for searing and making grill marks on all the meat you grill.

char broil infrared grill grates

In my opinion, they are great for this but for grilling at a more moderate temperature, my pick is one of the other grill grates I mention above.

Cleaning Grill Grates

I can write for hours about how to clean grill grates. Every type of grate has the best way of cleaning and I think with the tips above you can get the job done.

If you like to read some more then have a look at my reviews of grill brushes.

If you have time you should flip the grates over and clean the bottom also.

However, if you plan on not using your grill for an extended time I suggest you have a look at the tips I wrote about end-of-season grill cleaning with some ideas on deep cleaning.

Eddie van Aken

Eddie van Aken brings years of experience from running a full-service restaurant, where he honed his skills with all types of kitchen equipment. His expertise extends to mastering the art of outdoor cooking, utilizing the right recipes to enhance flavors on grills and smokers. Eddie’s in-depth knowledge allows him to provide comprehensive grill reviews and valuable outdoor cooking tips, helping enthusiasts make the most of their grilling adventures. You can read more on the¬†About page for Eddie van Aken

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