How to Clean a Flat Top Grill – Best Practices & Tips

Grilling is made exciting and successful by cooking equipment that is both fun and versatile for use. Such pieces include the infamous flat top grill, which turns simple meals into artistic and quality culinary experiences.

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The grill with a flat top, however, is prone to dirt and grime. Cooking on such surfaces is one way of turning your cooking session from fun to gross, as most of the dirt is smokey, sooty, and oily.

How do you turn that situation around to a sparkling clean flat top grill that looks as good as new? The answer to that has been discussed in depth in the context below. Read along.

Flat Top Grill Deep-Cleaning Methods

Depending on the type and amount of dirt on it, a deep cleaning session may be required for your flat top grill. This might not be an all-time requirement since thorough cleaning may take a lot of time that might not always be available.

If the dirt is not too deep-rooted or engraved on the surface, wiping it with a wet cloth after spraying some liquid cleaner does the trick.

More effort is needed when the grill has stayed for long without a general cleaning session. This activity keeps your equipment free from germs and bacteria, as well as giving it a ‘reset’ to its original color and appearance.

Deep cleaning involves paying serious attention to every corner of the grill. The process should be all-rounded such that you will have to re-season the grill before using it later on. This is due to the extra effort spent during deep cleaning, leading to the scraping off of the seasoning that had built up in the grill due to prolonged use.

How to Know that a Flat Top Grill Needs Deep Cleaning

Here are the signs to encourage you to deep clean your grill, in case you are not sure if you should do it yet:

  • Cross-transfer of Flavors Between Foods – If you had grilled chicken using certain ingredients, then you taste the same flavors in the next meal despite using different ingredients, it’s time to clean that flat top grill.
  • The Buildup of Grease on the Surface of the Griddle – If you can’t get the grease off the griddle with your daily grill-cleaning routine, schedule it for deep cleaning. Using the recommended detergents and liquids will take the oil patches out completely.
  • Patches of Particles From Previous Foods on Current Meals – When you notice burnt food particles mixing up with the food that you have freshly prepared, it’s best to give your flat top grill in-depth cleaning service. This happens after foods you had previously made on the griddle sticks to the surface and later holds on to the new food. Taking such foods is not good for your health.
  • Uneven Cooking of Food – Spots of dirt on the top of the griddle lead to uneven cooking of the food. The places with the dirt patches prevent heat from reaching that part of the food, making it uncooked.

Why You Should Consider the Material of Your Griddle Before Cleaning

The flat top grill’s construction material has an impact on the cleaning process, cleansers to use, and how to go about it. Chrome and stainless steel are the most widely used.

When cleaning a chrome griddle, abrasive cleaners should be avoided.

You will typically be directed on what to use by the equipment’s handbook or the manufacturer.

Materials Needed in Cleaning a Flat Top Grill

Steps to Follow When Cleaning Flat Top Grill (Stainless Steel)

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  1. Heat the grill to a temperature of 300 to 350° F.
  2. Use the griddle scraper to remove the grease and debris stuck on the griddle.
  3. Use warm water to moisten the surface. Coldwater leads to thermal shock that may crack the surface so it should be avoided.
  4. Let the surface cool down before scrubbing it with the griddle scrubber attached to the scrubber holder and screen.
  5. Use clean water to rinse then wipe the surface using a clean dishcloth.
  6. Spray the surface with a cleaner designed for stainless steel, then wipe it dry using another cloth.
  7. Start re-seasoning.

Steps to Follow When Cleaning a Chrome Flat Top Grill

  1. Raise the grill’s heat to 350° F.
  2. Use the scraper to get rid of the dirt particles on the griddle’s surface.
  3. Moisturize the warm surface using warm water.
  4. Use a griddle brush that’s less abrasive to scrub on the surface.
  5. After the surface is well cleaned and cool in temperature, apply polish that’s safe on food to a dishrag. Wipe the surface dry with the rag.
  6. After drying out, use a damp cloth to get rid of the polish.

The Re-seasoning Process

This is done after deep cleaning the flat top grill.

  1. Turn the griddle’s heat up to 350° F and leave it burning for approximately 45 minutes.
  2. After heating it, turn off the heat and wait till the surface is cool.
  3. Sprinkle vegetable oil on the surface and spread it evenly into a thin film, using a clean cloth.
  4. Turn on the heat again and let the oil heat up for a while until it emits smoke.
  5. Turn off the heat and leave the surface to get cooler.
  6. You can now cook your meals on the grill.

Check our in-depth reviews for the best gas griddles for this year


Adopting a simple cleaning routine and following it after each cooking session on your flat top grill prevents dirt from accumulating on the surface. This makes deep cleaning an easy task once you decide to partake in it.

Make it a habit to scrape off any food or other dirt particles from the surface after your food is ready. Also, ensure to use clean water and spray cleaners that suit the material used to make your grill. Rags will work well to bring the final sparkle to your grill after wiping it. A clean flat top grill translates into clean and well-cooked meals!

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