There’s some stigma surrounding electric grills and their use for home cooking.
Purists will tell you that an electric grill could never compete with gas or charcoal.
But these people are only missing the bigger picture. Electric grills offer convenience.
They’re also a healthier way to cook.
Are electric grills healthy when used instead of propane gas or charcoal?
The answer is yes, and we’re going to tell you all the reasons why you should buy one.
What is an Electric Grill?
Traditional grills use gas or sometimes charcoal as fuel.
Gas grills are by far the most popular option for buyers today, but there is a growing number of people interested in the convenience and potential of electric grilling.
There was a time when electric grills lacked performance.
Older designs couldn’t compare with traditional gas or charcoal grills.
The cooking experience wasn’t as satisfying, and the flavor wasn’t quite there.
But with new designs and innovations, things have changed.
Today, you can invest in an electric grill that provides a similar experience to gas or charcoal with all the flavor that you need to enjoy your favorite ingredients and impress your friends and family.
- Electric grills use heating elements rather than gas or charcoal for fuel.
- There’s no smoke or fumes from the heating source.
- You can use an electric grill indoors or out.
- Electric grilling is healthy with excellent grease management.
Forget what you previously thought about electric grills. Today’s options are far more versatile and able to make mouthwatering food on any occasion.
Some of the best manufacturers, including Napoleon and Weber, now make their electric grill models.
Now that you know all about modern electric grills, we can start to explore some of the benefits in detail, and also answer the question: is electric grilling healthy?
Can an Electric Grill Replace a Gas or Charcoal Grill?
Even if electric grills are healthy, can you replace a gas or charcoal grill and still get a good experience?
Some people will tell you that food from an electric grill won’t taste as good as food from charcoal or a gas grill.
This is an outdated opinion.
The trick to great-tasting grilled food is fresh ingredients, excellent seasoning, and heat.
When you grill food, a chemical reaction occurs where sugars and fats are broken down and converted into new flavor compounds.
Any cooking surface or oven can achieve this.
That’s why pan-seared steaks can taste so good. It’s your technique, supported by a reliable cooking appliance.
A modern electric grill can get hot enough to sear the perfect steak. You can grill veggies for a smoky flavor.
And, perhaps most importantly, you can cut out a lot of the grease in your food, just like when you cook on a charcoal or gas grill.
Is electric grilling healthy? For sure! Will your food taste great? Absolutely.
Most electric grills come with removable or hinged hoods so that you can cook with the top down for improved flavor and better heat management.
The only area where electric grills lack is the ease of cooking with indirect heat.
A gas or charcoal model will be better for low and slow sessions, but for everything else, electricity will do the job perfectly.
You can easily replace your old grill with an electric grill, and you’ll be more than satisfied.
Are Electric Grills Healthy?
Now that we’re clear on how effective an electric grill can be, let’s consider one of the most important questions. Are electric grills healthy?
Electric grilling is healthy and there are a few reasons for this…
When you cook with any grill (whether it’s gas, electric, or charcoal), you will typically use less oil when compared to cooking in a pan or skillet.
Even if you like to cook fatty cuts like premium steak or even pork belly, a lot of the fat will render during the cooking process.
Most of this gets vaporized, removing the calories but introducing new flavor compounds in the food.
Grilling is a low-fat way to cook and with an electric grill, you’ll see the grease coming away from the food.
Grilling is also a more involved activity that is often associated with the outdoors.
Spending time with friends in the sun and fresh air, or even grilling on a fishing or hunting trip means that you’re going to do a lot more moving around.
We’re not saying that grilling is a physical exercise, but it is associated with a more active lifestyle. In this way, electric grilling is inherently healthy.
You also cut down on dangerous contaminants when you use an electric grill, so your health will be protected even when grilling over a couple of hours.
Is Electric Grilling Healthy When Cooking Indoors?
To put this clearly, there’s no healthy way to use gas and charcoal grills indoors.
Charcoal and gas can release carbon monoxide and other contaminants.
Electric grills don’t produce any contaminants so they can be safely used indoors.
If you live in a condo, apartment, or anywhere that you lack outdoor space, an electric grill is a healthy option.
Even if you simply want the versatility to cook indoors during bad weather or any other time that it’s convenient, an electric grill will be the best option for you.
Is electric grilling healthy for indoor cooking? Sure thing. Of course, you can use an electric grill outdoors wherever you have access to a power outlet.
This means that you can take a grill camping and connect it to an RV, an inverter, a marine power supply, or a generator, and grill with ease.
You won’t need to carry disposable canisters, a large propane tank, or charcoal. It’s simply safer and more convenient.
Can I Cook the Usual Ingredients on an Electric Grill?
You might be wondering: is electric grilling healthy for any ingredient? The good news here is that virtually anything you love to cook can be prepared on an electric grill.
There are two basic types of electric grills. Those with solid cooking plates, and then models with regular slotted grids like on a gas or charcoal grill.
Solid cooking plates can give you more versatility because you can work with ingredients that would usually fall through a regular grill.
Loose vegetables, fish, skewered ingredients, burgers, hot dogs, pork chops, steaks, and anything else that you can think of can be grilled using an electric model.
You could even cook specialty bread or pizza with an electric grill if it has a hood.
If you have avoided buying an electric grill because you thought that it wouldn’t have the versatility or performance of a traditional grill, you can have confidence knowing that it will cover 99% of your cooking needs outdoors.
Do Electric Grills Work Better for Some Ingredients?
While electric grills are versatile, some ingredients just work better.
As an example, you could cook thin strips of beef and pork on a flat top or solid top electric grill, in the style of Korean BBQ.
You won’t have to worry about anything falling into the grill body.
If you choose an electric grill with traditional cooking grids, you’ll be able to prepare steak, chicken, fish, pork chops, and similar ingredients with real sear marks.
With cooking grids, juices will fall from your food onto the heating elements where they will be vaporized, just like with coal or gas.
A lot of people who switch to electric grilling find the process to be easier because electric grills are more consistent.
Once you set the temperature, the grill will stay close within that range, and you won’t have to adjust the setting or any ventilation controls.
If you primarily cook burgers, hot dogs, and other simple grill ingredients then you may find that a solid top is the best option for you.
How Long Will an Electric Grill Last?
Modern electric grills are made to high-quality standards and are designed to last over several seasons.
Because electric grills can be stored indoors, problems like rust and decay are rare.
The most affordable electric grill should last well beyond the first year.
Spending more on trusted brand names like Weber and Napoleon can get you a grill that will last much longer, making it a long-term investment just like a traditional grill.
The Weber Q 1000 is one of the most popular electric grills.
- One stainless steel burner produces 8500 BTU-per-hour to heat 189 square-inch total cooking area
- Porcelain-enameled cast-iron cooking grates and cast aluminum lid and body
- Fully assembled out of box. Dimensions - lid closed (inches): 14.5H x 27W x 16.5D inches
- Push-button ignition and infinite control burner valve settings. Fuel type - Liquid Petroleum Gas (disposable cartridge sold separately)
- Uses disposable 14.1 or 16.4 oz. LP cylinder (sold separately). Grill must be preheated with burner on high for 10 to 15 minutes
It is covered by a 5-year warranty for the cook box and lid, 2 years for the heating elements, 5 for the cooking surface, and 5 for plastic components.
As you can see, you can get a durable grill even when choosing electric.
How Hot Can an Electric Grill Get?
Electric grills can get up to 650°F, making them comparable with both gas and charcoal grills.
Heat is important during the cooking process.
High heat helps to seal in juices while ensuring that the food is cooked through.
Because you can very easily set the temperature and have the grill regulate it within a small margin of variance, your food will often come out better than on a charcoal or gas grill.
You need a lot of experience to get perfect results on a traditional grill, but with an electric grill, you’ll get amazing results right out of the box.
Healthy, safe, convenient, and with all of the heat you need, modern electric grills truly can change the way that you think about home grilling.
What are the Healthiest Ingredients for an Electric Grill?
Most people who ask “are electric grills healthy?” are the same people that want to make better meal choices.
If you want to offer healthier food to your family and friends, an electric grill is a good place to start.
Even with an inherently healthy grill, you will still need to choose the right ingredients.
Some of the best ingredients to cook on a healthy electric grill include:
- Lettuce – Did you know that you can grill lettuce to give it a more complex flavor? Romaine is the best, but any thick leaves will work. Simply grill at a medium temperature for a couple of minutes until the edges brown and the leaves become intensely green.
- Asparagus – This is an amazing choice for your health and with an electric grill it’s easy to quickly grill whole asparagus stalks.
- Steak – Beef can be healthy when you choose the right cut. Rich in protein and minerals, you should choose a top sirloin steak for less fat and maximum flavor.
- Tofu – If you want a vegetarian option or just a change from your usual ingredients, you can grill tofu. Slice into thick steaks and grill directly, turning once browned. You could also cube the tofu and put it on skewers to grill with vegetables like bell pepper, onion, and zucchini.
- Chicken Breast – Low in fat and rich in protein, chicken breast is the perfect food for healthy electric grilling. Rub or marinate the chicken before grilling using your favorite recipe.
What are Some Good Electric Grills to Buy Today?
Electric grills are healthy and also relatively affordable. You can start with the suggestions below as you explore your options.
- The George Foreman Indoor/Outdoor Electric Grill is one of the most popular grills on the market today. This model can be used on a tabletop or a pedestal stand, giving you a modern or traditional cooking experience. This grill has excellent grease management for healthier meals and easy cleaning. The solid top is perfect for ingredients that don’t work well on slotted grids.
- The Weber Q2400 is larger than your average electric grill. It cooks just like a traditional grill and has cast-iron cooking grids for excellent heat retention and authentic sear marks. If you want something of high quality that feels like a gas or charcoal grill, this is the one for you.
Is Electric Grilling Healthy? The Bottom Line
We’ve answered your question “is electric grilling healthy” and provided all the information that you need to make an informed decision on your next grill.
Cooking at home is more fun and flavorful when you use a grill, and an electric model is the easiest way to do it.