Cleaning is probably not the most popular favorite part of serving a summer grill, but a roast and a little elbow grease can help get your grill to clean after guests are gone.
Step 1: Get an Onion
Be sure to use a raw smoke. Some large assortment – white, yellow or red – should work.
Step 2: Cut the onion
Cut the onion in half, says BobVila.com – it doesn't matter which direction you cut it. Then peel off the paper layer from half of the onion.
Step 3: Warm your grill
It is best to clean a hot grill, as the Family Handyman says that the heat helps to loosen the rest on the grill. If the gates are no longer hot, BobVila.com says that you should turn the grill again to heat the grill again. (Do not start cleaning until the flame is out and the grill has cooled down slightly.) When the grill is hot, place a grill fork on the round side of the onion, with the flat side facing down, The Family Hantlangare says. The fork helps you keep your hands away from the hot gates.
Step 4: Clean the grill
To clean the grill, use the fork to rub the lazy plate back and forth over the grills, says BobVila Com. This should loosen built-up dirt and remove it from the grill. Family Handyman also notes that onion has antibacterial properties, so this cleaning method can actually help kill bacteria that linger on your grill. Another upside is that the onion can leave some spices on the grill, says BobVila.com, so your next grilled meal may have a little added flavor.
If the rest is particularly stubborn, The Family Handyman recommends spraying it with some lemon juice or white vinegar, as the acid will help loosen the dirt. Then rub the onion over the grill as indicated above.
If you're about to postpone the grill for another meal, you can throw the onion in charcoal for a little added flavor, BobVila.com says. If you have a gas grill or will not cook again immediately, you can easily handle the onion used for cleaning. If you have a compost basket, throw it in there and the whole cleaning process will be environmentally friendly.
Grilling a good meal is a summer tradition for many, but scrubbing the grill with a brush does not have to be part of the experience. Half an onion can help you clean your grill easily and can give your next meal some added flavor.
Originally published June 13, 2016.