10 Ingenious Tools That Will Make Grill Cleaning (and Grilling!) a Breeze

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Credit: Shelly Westerhausen

Whether you’re going to be doing your grilling indoors or outdoors this year, I bet you’re already thinking about which warm-weather dish you’re going to sink your teeth into first. But one equally important thing that’s probably not on your mind? Cleaning your grill. We know how easy it is to put off, but your grill — and your food — will be much better if you spend just a little bit of time doing some light cleaning.

We gathered all the possible cleaning tools your grill could call for, so no matter how much dirt and grease is caked onto your grates, you’ll be able to remove it all before any burger patties touch down. The best part about these grill cleaning tools is that they help you both achieve and maintain a clean grill — so if you’re willing to spend a few minutes after you’re done grilling to give things a quick scrub down, your grill will be easier to keep clean throughout the year and will likely last longer in the long run. Do your grill a favor and grab some of these tools ASAP.

1 / 10

This all-purpose stainless-steel brush is the centerpiece of your grill cleaning kit. One side has a solid scraper for removing stuck-on bits and loosening grime, and the reverse side has a series of tightly coiled metal springs that get in and around grates to scrub them completely. Plus, it has over 10,000 five-star ratings on Amazon. For best results, preheat your grill before you start scraping and keep some water nearby to regularly rinse the brush in between scrubbings.

2 / 10
Traeger Grills

Our contributor Shifrah Combiths found this to be the best grill cleaning spray available because it works well and is safe to use on surfaces that come into contact with food. While more harsh and potentially toxic cleaning sprays may do a better job of removing all the grime, Shifrah was pleased with this all-natural one that got her grates looking almost good as new. "It foams but it’s not an aerosol and it only needs to be left on for five to 10 minutes," she wrote. "Best of all, you can see the dirt and grease melt before your eyes, which is so satisfying. It also means it works really well."

3 / 10
Home Depot

After having bad experiences with two different metal brushes, our former executive lifestyle director Lisa Freedman discovered this wooden scraping tool and found it to be far superior. It helped her keep her grill grates clear of burnt food bits and, because of the way its flat head molds to the shape of your grill over time, it's able to reach into all the crevices for a thorough cleaning. "It essentially becomes a custom grill scraper made just for my grates," Lisa wrote.

4 / 10
Home Depot

If brushes and scraping tools don't cut it for you, try one of these cleaning stones. Each one is essentially a pumice stone for your grill. As you use it to get rid of hardened grease and grime, it conforms to your grates and becomes a customized cleaning tool. It's made from recycled materials and is non-toxic, so you know it's safe to use on cooking surfaces (and when you're done using it on your grill, it can help clean up your stove grates, too).

5 / 10
Home Depot

The traditional Simple Green cleaning spray is beloved by grilling enthusiasts, but if you feel like your grill needs something a little stronger, go for this heavy-duty spray. It emits some fumes, so you'll want to use it outside in an area that has good ventilation, but it's not as harsh as other chemical cleaners. If your grill could use a deep cleaning, this stuff will work wonders.

6 / 10

The brilliant people behind the Scrub Daddy dish pad brought their technology to the grill, and according to our contributor Danielle Centoni, it works wonders. This grill brush uses a specialized Scrub Daddy head that, like their traditional products, becomes firm in cold water and flexible in hot water. After you preheat your grill and use the metal scraper side to loosen up the burnt food bits, dip the sponge side in water and it will clear the debris away. "Immediately, it produced a cloud of steam and left a trail of truly sparklingly clean cast iron in its wake," Danielle wrote. "Holy smokes! I thought. This thing really works!"

7 / 10

If you have the time to take the grates off your grill and give them a deep cleaning, these stainless-steel scouring pads will really come in handy. They allow you to clean areas with more precision than a brush and can even let you apply more pressure to dirty corners with tough stains. They're wonderful for cleaning your kitchen stove grates and cookware, too, so it's always smart to keep these on hand.

8 / 10
Williams Sonoma

Because the bristles on this compact Le Creuset brush are made of nylon, they're safe to use on any kind of metal and cast-iron cooking surfaces — which includes grill grates and indoor grill pans. This little tool gives you a lot of scrubbing power and ensures that you won't have to worry about ever damaging your cookware. Our contributor Rochelle Bilow was impressed by how well this cleaned her old charcoal grill grate and even more impressed by how little wear and tear showed on the brush after use.

9 / 10
Ace Hardware

The outside of your grill could use a wipe down every once in a while, too. This cleaning cloth removes soot and grease from your grill's lid, handle, and body, and when it gets dirty, you can wash it with soap and keep using it. This is also the quickest and easiest of all the grill-cleaning duties, so if you only get one tool from our list, make it this one.

10 / 10

It's important to regularly empty the ashtray on your charcoal grill, but it's also easy to forget because as soon as you're done grilling, the ashes are too hot to safely dispose of. This metal bucket makes keeping the ashtray clear easy by giving you a place to store hot ashes while they cool off. When they're ready, you can just dump them in the trash — without having to open the grill up and feel like you're really doing any cleaning chore.