How Do I Choose the Best Barbecue Grate?

Lori Kilchermann
Lori Kilchermann
The barbecue's surface area should be large enough to accommodate multiple servings.
The barbecue's surface area should be large enough to accommodate multiple servings.

When it comes to choosing the best barbecue grate, you have several styles to pick from. The average barbecue grate can be made in a wide variety of materials and designs, from chrome-plated steel and ceramic-coated steel to plain cast iron. Each type of grate material has a special purpose that it is intended to provide for the user. Whether it be a traditional charcoal grill or a modern, gas-fired model, the barbecue grate is often the deciding factor when choosing one model of grill over another.

Chrome-plated steel grates are the most basic type of barbecue grate.
Chrome-plated steel grates are the most basic type of barbecue grate.

The bottom-of-the-line model of barbecue grate is traditionally found on most entry-level, charcoal grill models. The chrome-plated, steel grate is the most basic of all grate designs, and while it offers certain non-stick capabilities when new, it can eventually rust and become difficult to clean. One trick to improve the lifetime of the chrome-plating is to apply a non-stick spray to the grate prior to cooking on it. Using non-metallic grill tools on this type of barbecue grate will also add life to the grate. If, however, you are searching for a short-term cooking surface and do not mind changing the grate out every grilling season, you might want to choose the chrome-plated grate for your barbecuing needs.

Different barbecue grate styles can be used depending on the type of meat that will be grilled.
Different barbecue grate styles can be used depending on the type of meat that will be grilled.

One of the more common types of barbecue grate for both charcoal as well as gas grills is the porcelain- or ceramic-coated steel grate. This type of grate consists of a steel-wire grate that is coated with a ceramic material for non-stick cooking with relatively easy cleanup. Commonly offered as both an original equipment type of grate as well as a replacement grate, this style is both economically priced and fairly durable. Providing you care for the grate by cleaning it thoroughly after each use and do not allow burnt-on food to remain on the grate for long periods, this can be a wise choice for your cooking needs.

If your goal is to choose the best barbecue grate for your grill, most cooks agree that the cast-iron grate offers the most benefits of any of the different styles. The cast-iron grate provides the most even heating and produces the most identifiable grill marks on your food. The tip in keeping your cast-iron grill grate in top-notch cooking order is to lubricate the grate prior to every use. You have several grates to choose from, with each one offering a distinct level of cooking and durability performance at all price points.

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    • The barbecue's surface area should be large enough to accommodate multiple servings.
      By: Elenathewise
      The barbecue's surface area should be large enough to accommodate multiple servings.
    • Chrome-plated steel grates are the most basic type of barbecue grate.
      By: amenic181
      Chrome-plated steel grates are the most basic type of barbecue grate.
    • Different barbecue grate styles can be used depending on the type of meat that will be grilled.
      By: Pietro D'Antonio
      Different barbecue grate styles can be used depending on the type of meat that will be grilled.