How to Clean a Flat Top Grill (Easy Step-By-Step Guide)

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Do you know that not cleaning your flat top grill or griddles can be dangerous to your health? Burned food particles that are carcinogenic can cause cancer.

If you are looking for a simple step-by-step guide on how to clean flat top grills, you have come to the right place.

In this guide, we will discuss the following:

  • The necessary tools

  • The step-by-step guide for the deep cleaning process

  • The frequency of cleaning a flat top grill

  • The best time to deep clean your grill

  • Helpful tips on cleaning and usage of flat top grills

  • FAQs and many more

Sit back and relax as we start learning how to clean a flat top grill in easy-to-follow steps.

What Tools Will You Need?

First things first, before you can successfully clean your grill, you’ll need to gather some tools. Remember, using the wrong tool could damage your flat top grill. So, you should only use the tools that are listed below:

  1. Griddle Scraper

    A griddle or grill scraper is a bladed tool that will be used to scrape food particles off the griddle surface.

  2. Griddle Scrub Pad

    This tool resembles a dishwashing sponge but is rougher and is used to scrub dirt, debris, and grease off the grill’s surface.

  3. Grill Brush

    As the name suggests, a grill brush is a tool that is necessary when you perform a deep cleaning process on your flat top grill. You can use this to easily remove food from the grill.

  4. Grill Screen

    This tool is also a must-have when you are doing a deep clean. It is used to clean food debris and grease buildup on your flat top grill.

  5. Griddle Pot Holder

    The griddle pot holder will protect your hands from being burned when you clean your griddle while it’s still hot. It can be used to hold both the grill screen and the scrub pad.

  6. Flat Top Grill Cleaner

    Grill cleaners are used to help you clean your messy grill. You can find cleaners that are made from natural ingredients specifically made for flat top grills.

    There are also high-temperature cleaners that you can utilize immediately after you use your grill.

  7. Grill brick

    Grill bricks are considered a cleaning tool that can do almost all the cleaning. If you are looking for one product that can do all the cleaning, then buy a grill brick.

Deep Cleaning a Flat Top Grill

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The first cleaning process that we will discuss is how to deep clean a flat top grill. Looking at a messy grill after using it can be unsettling.

Imagine that you are cooking food for yourself and your family on a greasy and dirty grill that could potentially cause serious health conditions.

But need not fret, as you can perform a deep clean on flat top grills that will make them look clean, hygienic, and ready for your next use. What you will need is to follow the steps below:

Step 1: Let the grill cool down.

I know how you want to clean your grill top right after every use. But it’s best that you let it cool down first to avoid any injury.

Step 2: Start Scraping

Once the grill has completely cooled down, you can now start scraping off the food debris on the grill. Use the griddle scraper to help you remove the grease and debris from the cooking surfaces.

If you have a grease tray on your flat top grill, you can place all the grease and debris there in the meantime.

Sometimes, we forget to clean our flat top grills or don’t have time to do it. Thus, food particles that have been stuck on your grill for a long time could become harder and tougher to remove.

If this is the circumstance you are facing, you can pour a little bit of hot water to loosen the particles.

You can also use a grill cleaner at this point. But make sure that you don’t use a chemical-based cleaner. You need to consider that chemicals can be ex cooking on your grill.

You can also use warm soapy water and let it soak for a few minutes. After that, you can start scrubbing the surface clean with a grill brush or grill scrub pad.

Step 3: Wipe the grill surface clean.

Once you’ve successfully gotten rid of the food particles and grease buildup and are sure that you have properly cleaned your stainless steel flat top grill, it’s now time to wipe the flat top grill surface off.

You can use a paper towel to wipe off any dirt on your grill. Don’t forget to target some spots with water.

It will help remove all the remaining grease, residue, and soap left over from the grill. This step is crucial to helping prevent your flat top grill from getting rusty.

Step 4: Don’t Forget to Oil Your Grill

Finally, your grill is clean and safe for another grilling session. But before you get too satisfied with what you have done with your grill, there is still one last step left.

In this step, you need to grab your cooking oil or cooking spray and apply it to your grill’s cooking surfaces.

By doing this step, you can ensure that your grill is protected from rust and maintain the non-stick layer of your grill.

Routine Cleaning Procedure

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Your grill’s lifespan depends on how well you maintain it. Although you can perform a deep cleaning on your flat top grill once in a while, it’s still best that you perform a routine cleaning after each use of your flat top grill.

Additionally, doing a routine cleaning will also ensure that your food will taste great every time you use it.

So, if you haven’t been doing routine cleaning yet, here is a step-by-step guide that you can follow moving forward.

Step 1: Remove leftovers from the cooking surface.

Use a griddle scraper to remove food leftovers and grease from the cooking surface after every use.

Step 2: Pour warm water

Once you have freed your flat top grill from leftover grease and food debris and let it cool down, spray warm water on it and rinse the entire surface properly.

Step 3: Dry Your Grill

Dry your grill after giving it a good rinse with warm water and a clean rag or a paper towel. Don’t leave your grill wet or even moist, as it can lead to rusting.

Step 4: Re-season Your Grill

Re-seasoning your grill is a vital step in every cleaning process, as it ensures that your grill is operating at its best. The re-seasoning process includes heating and oiling the surface of your grill.

Other Ways How to Clean a Flat Top Grill

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Aside from the conventional cleaning methods, there are also other ways to clean a flat top griddle. Refer below if you think that cleaning your flat top griddle isn’t clean enough, even if you follow the routine and deep clean methods above.

  • If you have leftover brewed coffee, you can pour it on the cooking surface of the grill. Let it set for about ten minutes, then scrub it with a griddle brush. Once you remove all the leftover food sticks from the griddle, you can use a griddle scraper to scrape away all the debris.

  • Another way to clean your flat top griddle is to use one part vinegar and one part water. This is best if you don’t want to use a chemical-based cleaner.

    The combination of water and vinegar is effective in removing grease from the griddle. Mix an equal amount of water and vinegar and place them in a spray bottle.

    Spray the mixture on the griddle and let it sit until the particles loosen up. Use a rag or a few paper towels to wipe off the surface, and you’re good to go.

How Frequent You Should Clean Flat Top Grills

How to clean a flat top grill isn’t the only thing that you should be focusing on. You should also know how often you should clean your flat top grill.

For a routine clean, you should do it right after every single use of the griddle. Follow the step-by-step guide provided above to guide you through the proper way of doing routine cleaning.

Remember that even though the entire cooking surface looks clean after using it, you shouldn’t skip doing routine cleaning. It should be a must.

Meanwhile, if you aren’t using your grill often and only leave it in storage most of the time, it’s best that you give it a nice wipe every now and then to avoid any moisture from lingering and rusting your griddle. It will also maintain its beauty and quality.

When Should You Perform the Deep Clean Method?

If you love to grill, it means that you are using your flat top grill frequently. And when you constantly use your flat top grill, gunk will start to build up in the corner, even though you are doing a routine cleaning afterward.

If you’re unsure when your flat top grill needs to be deep cleaned, here are some tell-tale signs that you should watch out for:

  1. Noticing an unusual taste in the food that you cooked on your flat top grill. The off-taste you are noticing could be the result of grease and residue buildup on the griddle surface.

  2. When you notice the food cooked on your flat top grill has an odd color. This sign indicates that there is some leftover food on your flat top grill surface.

  3. Once you notice visible food particles and grease on the flat top grill, this can be noticed if you don’t routinely clean your griddle. If so, you should perform a deep clean immediately and ensure that you clean it every time you use it moving forward.

Helpful Tips on How to Use and Clean a Flat Top Grill

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  1. When performing a re-seasoning of your grill, make sure that the flat top grill is as clean as possible. So, follow the cleaning guide on how to clean a flat top grill provided above. You can use your favorite oil as long as it is food-grade.

  2. Check your surroundings before you start grilling. Make sure that you install your grill away from vinyl siding.

  3. Don’t store anything on your griddle, such as bags, clothes, or any flammable products that can easily produce a spark or catch fire.

  4. Only use the flat top grill in an open, well-ventilated area.

  5. Always check your propane gas. Be wary when you smell too much gas. Stop cooking immediately and cover the tank with a damp cloth.

  6. In the event of a gas leak, immediately call 911.


How to Store Your Flat Top Grill

You must store your commercial flat top grill in a cool, dry, and accessible place. However, make sure that the grill is away from any children’s reach.

Why Did My Griddle Go Black?

It’s normal for your griddle to turn black if you properly season it.

What to Do When the Griddle Starts to Rust?

You can easily remove rust by using steel wool and sandpaper. Re-season the cooking surface after removing the rust.


Knowing how to clean a flat top grill will help increase your griddle’s lifespan. It will also ensure that your grill is free from any carcinogens, or burnt materials that can cause bitter-tasting food.

By following the cleaning guide and remembering the tips, you can ensure that your griddle will be clean. Plus, you will also know how to properly use and store your griddle to ensure safety.


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