Flat top grills are a great way to cook any meal and for any occasion. That’s one of the reasons they’ve been a staple for the modern professional chef’s kitchen for centuries!
With the Coyote Outdoor Living 30 inch Flat Top Grill, you can bring that same professional approach to culinary creations right in your own backyard! But like all great pieces of equipment — a little maintenance goes a long way.
Taking good care of your grill from the get-go will keep it in perfect condition for many summers to come. In this post, we’ll learn how to care for and clean your flat top grill to keep it feeling like new through this grilling season and beyond.
Why Cook on a Flat Top Grill
The Coyote’s Flat Top Grill offers one of the most versatile cooking surfaces on the market. By cooking on your flat top, you’re able to tap into a huge diversity of food preparation options, from seafood to vegetables to meat. Basically, anything you can cook on your indoor range can be perfected outdoors using your flat top grill.
The flat top grill is a preferred method of cooking because it offers an evenly-heated cooking surface heated from below using gas. But if you neglect to clean and maintain your grill properly, you’re at risk of losing the benefits of the stainless steel nonstick surface. Portions of your grill might not heat and cook evenly if there is food residue build-up. And if left totally unchecked, acids and other chemicals in food residue could have a corrosive effect on your grilling surface.
But don’t worry, cleaning your grill is an easy maintenance step that once you get in the habit of doing will become second nature.
How to Season a Flat Top Grill
One thing that prevents some people from choosing a flat top grill is the assumption it will be difficult to season. But the grilling surface on our Coyote 30 inch Flat Top Grill is made from high-quality 304 Stainless Steel. So to get started, simply burn off any dust or residue by powering your unit on high for about 10 minutes before the first time you cook on the grill.
You do not need to season a stainless steel griddle surface the way it is necessary for a cast-iron grilling surface. Food is less likely to stick on the stainless steel surface, so a thin coat of oil when you turn on the flame is all it takes to enjoy a wonderful stick-free surface.
Keeping Your Grill Clean
Most classically-trained chefs know the importance of a clean workspace. Your outdoor kitchen should be no different. By perfecting your post-use cleanup regimen, you not only ensure the grill is clean and ready to go the next time you’re ready to cook out, you also ensure your equipment lives a long and productive life.
This is especially true of outdoor kitchen equipment, which not only has to perform in a wider range of temperatures but is also exposed to the elements during its downtime.
A little protection goes a long way. In addition to thorough cleaning, coverings like our weather resistant covers can help protect your flat top grill from the elements.
How to Clean a Flat Top Grill After Use
You have a few options when it comes to routine cleaning of your Coyote Flat Top grill. The first step might make sense to invest in some cleaning implements.
Griddle scrapers and griddle bricks are two great options to use on those bits of stubborn cooked-on food detritus. Scrapers are pieces of steel or metal composite with long plastic handles used to scrape food bits and baked-on debris from the grill surface the way a snow scraper removes ice from your windshield. Griddle bricks are soft pieces of non-toxic pumice stone that remove food from the flat cooking surface. The soft surface slowly dissolves over many uses, cleaning your grilling surface without leaving harsh grooves or scratches the way bristle brushes can.
With either method, using a bit of warm water will help steam the surface to dissolve gunk and food bits. Heat the surface of the grill to medium-hot and add the warm water slowly, being careful to protect yourself from potential steam burns.
How to Clean a Flat Top Grill with Vinegar
Griddle cleaning agents do exist to help you take care of chrome, stainless steel or cast iron surfaces. But for those looking to avoid using harsh chemicals, it is easy to keep your Coyote Flat Top Grill clean using some simple household staples.
One option is good ol’ white vinegar. Simply make a half-and-half solution of vinegar and water, then slowly pour it onto your hot grill surface. Clean the surface with your grill scraper or brick as needed. When finished, simply drain the excess liquid and wipe down with a cloth towel or rag.
Another option is lemon juice. The acidic properties do a great job fighting gunk and will leave your stainless steel surface with a beautiful shine. Mix a solution of about ¼ lemon juice with ¾ water, spray it onto the surface and slowly wipe away grease and grime.
How to Clean a Burnt Flat Top Grill
Okay. Maybe you didn’t get a chance to clean your flat top grill before putting it away for the winter. Hey, it happens sometimes. No judgement here!
Luckily, there are some tricks for long time flat top grill owners who haven’t done routine maintenance. For a really deep clean, follow these tips to remove rust and burnt-on mess and get your flat top grill back in tip-top shape.
Heat your grill on high for about 20 minutes. Then, let it cool.
First, try a cleaning brick and/or a scraper and warm water. If that doesn’t work, heat the grill again and try one of the cleaning agents above, or a sudsy dish soap and water solution with a wire brush. For really tough gunk, try a brillo pad or a wet/dry sandpaper — but only as a last resort.
Once your grill is clean of rust and gunk, coat it with oil to preserve the clean grilling surface and protect it from future rust. Wipe away excess oil with a paper towel or rag. Make sure you cover it to protect it from the elements!