GRILL PREP: Before you can grill a great steak, chop, or chicken breast you’ll need to prepare the grill you will be using.

Annual Cleaning – A clean grill is essential to producing superior grilling results. A dirty grill will cause food to stick, impart unwanted flavors to your food, and shorten the life of your grill. Start your grilling season off with an annual cleaning. There are many YouTube videos available on annual grill cleaning, here’s a link to one from Lowe’s:

Clean after each use – After your annual cleaning, keeping your grill surface clean is easy. After every use of your grill “burn off’ any residues left behind from grilling your meal. On a gas grill simply turn all your burners to high and shut the lid, allow the grill to run for 15 minutes,then shut off the grill and brush off the now charred residue with your grill brush.

You can do the same thing with a charcoal grill by knocking down the coals and placing your lid on the grill, allow the grill to burn for 25 minutes, and then brush off the ashes with your grill brush.

WARNING: clean means rough debris and ash is removed, it does not mean cleaned to the bare metal. Bare metal rusts and bare stainless pits and corrodes. Leaving a thin coat of “black” or “dark oil” on your grates protects against corrosion and seasons your grill like you would a fine cast iron pan.

Oil the grates each use – If you follow the above steps after grilling, the next time you use the grill your prep will be a cinch. First, lightly brush the surface of your grill with your grill brush to remove any debris you missed after your last grilling. Take four sheets of paper towels stacked on each other and fold them into a tight packet or “pad”, dip the pad in canola, sunflower, rice bran, or olive oil and using your grill tongs lightly wipe the oil evenly over your grill.

WARNING: don’t use too much oil, you want the food to not stick, not start a fire from excess oil!