Learn How to Season a Charcoal Grill in Five Simple Steps
Learn How to Season a Charcoal Grill in Five Simple Steps

Learn How to Season a Charcoal Grill in Five Simple Steps

How to Season a Charcoal Grill

You’ve just invested in a new charcoal grill and you’re excited for the season ahead.

Charcoal imparts a unique smokey flavor that is preferred by many grilling enthusiasts.

As a solid fuel that can be easily stored, it’s also more convenient for many families.

If you want to get the most out of your charcoal grill, you’ll need to start with the seasoning process.

This is an important step that will protect your grill and get it ready for years of trouble-free and safe cooking.

Learn why you need to season a new charcoal grill and follow our simple steps to get started at home.

Why is it Important to Season a Charcoal Grill?

Charcoal grills are designed to provide a simple, effective, and flavorful way to prepare your favorite meals outdoors.

However, when you take your grill out of the box, the grill can be contaminated by chemicals and debris from the manufacturing process.

It doesn’t matter whether you’ve invested in an affordable charcoal grill under $100, or a more premium smoker/grill combo; seasoning is an essential step.

The benefits of seasoning go beyond removing impurities:

  • It removes chemical residues, manufacturing oils, paint, dust, and shavings from your grill.
  • Your grill will be fully sterilized after the first seasoning.
  • Seasoning provides non-stick properties, making it easier to cook your favorite ingredients.
  • Seasoning uses oil, which can prevent rust on porous surfaces like painted sheet metal and cast iron.

You can protect your investment and the health of your family with a simple charcoal grill seasoning process.

Steps to Season Your Charcoal Grill

How to Season a Charcoal Grill

Before you begin seasoning, unpack your grill and familiarize yourself with all of the parts. Read the user manual and take note of any health and safety tips.

  1. Rinsing and air drying the cast iron grill grates is the first step in the cleaning process. You won’t need to use detergent for this step. Simply run the grates under cold water (it’s best if you do this outside) and lay them out to dry somewhere where it’s warm and dry.
  2. Once the grates are completely dry, you can begin seasoning. Take a basting brush or a paintbrush that has never been used. Coat the grates with cooking oil that has a high smoke point. Vegetable oil and canola oil are popular options. If you don’t have a brush, use paper towels or a clean kitchen towel. The oil should be absorbed completely into the grates. Don’t stop until all the metal is coated, and wipe away any excess. [Porcelain enamel cast iron grates do not need to be coated in oil. Simply wash them and continue to the next step.]
  3. Next, you can move on to the inside of the grill. You’ll need to season all interior panels and the inside of the hood. Use the same cooking oil and apply a layer to all of the surfaces. After the surfaces are covered, put in enough charcoal to fire the grill up for around 30 to 45 minutes. Place the cooking grates over the firebox once the grill is started. Close the hood, and let the seasoning take care of itself.
  4. As the grill heats up, it will produce a lot of smoke. This smoke is created by surface chemicals from the manufacturing process. The cooking grates and the interior grill will begin to darken. This is normal.
  5. Let the charcoal die down, and the seasoning process is complete. Your grill is ready for cooking your first juicy steaks, burgers, or whatever your favorite ingredients are.

These essential steps should be followed at any time that you purchase a new grill.

You can also continue to season a charcoal grill throughout its lifetime to prevent rust.

How Often Should You Repeat the Seasoning Process?

Stainless steel cooking grates only need to be seasoned once, because the metal won’t absorb or retain oils.

Cast iron parts will eventually dry out and will need seasoning every two to three months, depending on how often you use your grill.

Seasoning should also be performed any time you clean your cast iron cooking grates with water or a grill cleaning product.

Can You Season an Old Grill?

How To Season A Charcoal Grill

Even your older grill can be seasoned to extend its lifetime.

Scrub your old cast iron grates or interior surfaces with a metal brush before seasoning again with fresh oil.

Seasoning a Charcoal Grill Will Save You Money

How to Season a Charcoal GrillYou’ve invested in a cooking appliance that you’re proud of.

Make the most of it by seasoning when it’s new, and any time that oils have been completely burnt off the cast iron surfaces.

You can keep a charcoal grill far beyond the warranty period when you follow our simple steps.