How to Prepare a Grill for Cooking

How to Prepare a Grill for Cooking

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Summer is just around the corner, and that means it’s the perfect time to dust off your grill and sharpen your barbecue skills, especially if you’re dreaming of cooking up the perfect, juicy burger. If you’re new to grilling, here are some easy-to-follow tips to get your grill ready.

What Are Some Tools that You Need for Grilling?


If you want to grill like a pro, there are a few must-have items you should have:

  • Tongs: Tongs are a handy tool that helps you stay safe and away from the heat, so you don’t get burned. You’ll find them useful for flipping patties, turning sausages or chicken breasts, and getting that perfect sear on your food.
  • Spatula: Next up, you’ll want a spatula, but not just any spatula – go for a strong, broad one that can handle heavy grilled meat or delicate fish fillets. This trusty tool makes it simple to flip your cooked food without turning it into a crumbling mess.
  • Grill Brush: Because grills get really hot, food often sticks to the grates, and a regular kitchen scrubber won’t do the trick. You’ll need a specialized grill brush for this job. These brushes feature stainless steel bristles that effectively tackle even the most stubborn gunk, making it easier to clean your grill.
  • Meat Thermometer: When it comes to grilling, the challenge is that the direct heat often causes the outer layer of your meat to cook quickly, giving the impression that the whole piece is done. But, this isn’t always true. To make sure your meat is safe to eat, you need to use a meat thermometer. The last thing you want is to risk getting sick from undercooked meat.
  • Skewers: Skewers are great for grilling smaller pieces of meat or vegetables that might slip through the grill grates. They’re perfect for making kebabs too! If you’re planning to use skewers, skip the wooden ones since they’re single-use and can catch fire if not prepped. Stainless steel skewers are a better option. Also, remember to avoid placing the skewers directly over the fire; use indirect heat instead for safe grilling.
  • Basting Brush: To keep your food tasting great, you’ll need to apply butter, oil, sauces, or marinades ever so often. A regular brush might not do the job. Instead, think about getting a grill-friendly brush with a long handle and heat-resistant silicone bristles.

How to Prepare a Grill for Cooking

Here’s how to get your grill ready for cooking, whether it’s a propane, electric, gas, or charcoal grill:

Propane or Gas Grill:

  • Check Your Connections: Before you do anything else, check that all the connections between the propane tank and grill are secure and leak-free. To check for leaks, make a soapy water mixture (a few drops of dish soap in a cup of water), then use a brush or your fingers to apply it to the connections. If there’s a gas leak, you’ll see bubbles forming at the spot of the leak.
  • Open the Grill Cover Before Igniting: Keep the grill lid open when lighting to prevent a buildup of gas. After you open the lid, wait a few minutes to let any built-up gas escape.
  • Preheat the Grill: Turn on the grill’s burners to high and close the lid. Allow the grill to preheat for about 10-15 minutes.

Charcoal Grill:

  • Fill the Chimney Starter: If using charcoal, fill the chimney starter with charcoal briquettes. Place fire starter cubes or crumpled newspaper underneath to give your food that smoky flavor.
  • Light the Charcoal: Ignite the newspaper or fire starter cubes underneath the chimney starter. The flames will rise and gradually heat the charcoal.
  • Wait for Ashes: Wait until the charcoal briquettes in the chimney starter are covered in white ash. This usually takes around 20-30 minutes.
  • Spread the Charcoal: Carefully pour the hot charcoal onto one side of the grill. This allows for both direct and indirect cooking.

Electric Grill:

  • Plug it in: Make sure your grill is plugged into a safe, outdoor outlet.
  • Preheat: Turn it on and let it warm up for about 10-15 minutes. Most models have a light to indicate when they’re properly heated.

How to Season a Grill


Here’s a simple guide to seasoning your grill for different grilling techniques:

Step 1: Clean the Grates

For a new grill, remove any stickers or packaging. Give the grates a good scrub to remove any factory oils or residue. If you’re seasoning an older grill, clean off any leftover food bits or rust spots using a grill brush.

Step 2: Oil the Grates

Choose a high smoke point oil like canola, vegetable, or grapeseed oil. These oils can handle a hot grill without burning. Dip a paper towel in the oil, then use tongs to rub it over the grates. You want a thin, even layer of oil on all surfaces. Avoid using too much oil. This can cause flare-ups when you heat the grill.

Step 3: Heat the Grill

Turn your grill to high heat. Close the lid and let the grill heat up for about 15-20 minutes. This high heat will help the oil bake into the grates, creating a non-stick surface.

Step 4: Let It Cool Down

After the grill has heated for enough time, turn off the heat (or let the coals burn out) and allow the grill to cool down completely. Once cool, your grill is seasoned and ready to cook food!

How to Clean a Grill

Here’s a simple guide to cleaning your grill:

After Every Use:

  • After you’re done cooking, crank up the heat for a few minutes. This will turn any leftover bits of grilled food into ash, making them easier to brush off. If you’re using gas grills, be careful and make sure all the connections are tight and secure.
  • While the grill is still warm (but not hot), use a grill brush to scrub off any remaining debris on the grates. A good brush can get between the grates and even clean the sides effectively.

Deep Cleaning (Every Few Months):

  • If you’re using gas or propane grills, make sure the gas is turned off and disconnected. For charcoal grills, make sure all coals are completely extinguished and cool.
  • Take out the grates and any other removable parts. Soak them in warm, soapy water for a few minutes to loosen the grime.
  • After soaking, give the grates a good scrub with a grill brush or scrubbing pad. Rinse with water and let them dry.
  • To remove any buildup on the inside of the grill, use a grill stone or putty knife. Wipe down the interior surfaces with soapy water and a sponge or cloth. Don’t forget to clean the grease trap.
  • Wipe down the exterior of the grill with a soapy water solution and a sponge or cloth. For stainless steel grills, you can use a special cleaner for a shiny finish.
  • Put all the parts back together and leave the grill open to air dry completely before your next use.


With the right tools and a step-by-step approach, preparing a grill for cooking becomes a simple process. Whether you’re grilling with an electric, charcoal, or propane grill, following these guidelines will help you achieve success every time.

And for those looking for an even easier and convenient grilling experience, consider trying MisterChef’s electric grills. With MisterChef, you can enjoy delicious grilled dishes with minimal effort. Shop with us today.


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