Last updated: August 9, 2021

Occasionally, grilled food may fall through the grate. This is particularly annoying when it's not just a piece of white bread but a fine piece of meat. A grill plate can prevent such accidents in the future. However, grill plates have a whole range of other advantages: these include easy cleaning as well as health benefits. Our editors have taken a closer look at grill plates and present their favourites here in our grill plate test 2021.




Summary

  • Grill plates are available in many different designs. The material plays a decisive role, so make sure that your selected grill plate meets your requirements.
  • The most important properties that a grill plate should have are heat resistance, good heat retention and the ability to distribute the temperature evenly. All these factors are closely related to the material and thickness of the griddle.
  • In order to keep the grill plate in the best condition for a long time, the care must be correspondingly good. Not every grill plate can be cleaned uniformly and does not require the same amount of cleaning. Different things have to be taken into account when cleaning different materials.

The Best Grill Plate: Our Picks

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying a grill plate

What is a griddle?

A grill plate is a flat cup that you place on your grill grate. It allows you to grill your ingredients indirectly and you don't have to worry about your food falling through the grill or getting stuck on the grill. What a grill plate is and how you can use it is shown and explained in this unboxing video. With grill plates you can also grill plancha, which is a particularly healthy method of grilling because you don't need much fat for frying and also no harmful gases from a charcoal grill get through the grill plate.

Because the grill plate distributes the heat evenly, you can grill indirectly, which means that the meat or other ingredients are not heated directly over the flame.

Another positive aspect of grill plates is that they heat up strongly, up to 300 °C, and also store the heat very well. In addition, the high temperature means that not much oil or fat is needed, as these evaporate. Because of this, the grilled food appears as if it is "floating" slightly and is therefore particularly protected. This technique makes your dishes even more aromatic and the flavour remains better than with conventional grilling. For an even better result, you should check the temperature of the meat regularly so that you can achieve and maintain the consistency and flavour.

Where can I buy a grill plate?

You can buy grill plates both online and in bricks-and-mortar stores. Whether for private or gastronomic use, you have a wide choice of different sizes and brands. If you are already a professional in this field, you can order your griddle from the comfort of your home on the Internet. However, if you are new to the field, a visit to a specialist shop is recommended. There you will receive high-quality advice and a product suggestion that is specially adapted to you. In general, there are many ways to get a grill plate; the table should provide a quick overview.
Online Trade and Online
amazon.de Weber
ebay.de Hornbach
gartenxxl.at OBI
oogarden.de Bauhaus

Depending on the season, the stationary shops may offer a limited selection or no suitable products, for example in winter.

What does a grill plate cost?

The price of a grill plate depends on the quality, the brand, the size and also the material. When buying a grill plate, you can expect a price range of around 40 - 100 €. This price range refers to the private sector; if you are interested in a professional grill plate, the price can quickly rise to almost 200 €.

Grill plates are available in a wide variety of designs, whether for beginners or professionals. Prices vary depending on quality, size and material. (Image source: pixabay.de / qimono)

Before you buy a grill plate, look at amazon.de or idealo.de and compare the prices. Often there are cheaper prices or special offers with discounts at other retailers.

What are the alternatives to a grill plate?

Plancha grilling is a very special way of grilling and preparing ingredients. Therefore, there are hardly any alternatives for the same purpose or with the same result. Of course, you can place your food on the grill as usual and grill it on or next to the flame. In this case in particular, please remember to clean your grill regularly. Another option would be to use a fire basket for grilling and heat your meat or vegetables directly over the flame or to prepare the meal in a pan.

Traditional grilling also has its advantages; the flame gives the grilled food a particularly fiery and spicy taste. (Image source: pixabay.de / utroja0)

When grilling with a griddle, the aim is to achieve a particularly aromatic and intense grilling experience. This makes it difficult to find an equivalent alternative for this type of preparation.

Decision: What types of grill plates are there and which is the right one for you?

If you are interested in a grill plate, you should find out which grill plate best suits your wishes and requirements. Grill plates can differ in size, weight or the material they are made of. The latter is also the most important point, as you will achieve the best possible result by choosing the right material. There are the following options regarding the material:

  • Cast iron griddles
  • Cast aluminium griddles
  • Steel griddles
  • Stainless steel griddles

Here we will specifically discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each material. In general and regardless of the material, it can be said that in many cases griddles are reversible. This means that they can be used on both sides and usually one side is ribbed and the other smooth or the grill surface is half ribbed and half smooth. This allows you to grill meat on the ribbed side, for example, to achieve a branding, i.e. a pattern on the meat. You can grill more delicate ingredients on the smooth side, where they are seared on the outside but remain nice and juicy on the inside.

What are the characteristics of a cast iron griddle and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

In most cases, the cast iron grill plate is enamelled, which means that these plates are coated with a ceramic compound. The advantage is that they are very durable and heat-resistant. In general, grill plates made of enamelled cast iron are ideal for grilling. They vary in size but are often rectangular and also heavy due to the material. However, this can also be an advantage, because the plate slips less easily and adheres better to the grill. Furthermore, with cast iron grill plates, the heat is distributed very well over the entire plate and therefore achieves a very even result.

Advantages
  • Very heat-resistant
  • Even heat distribution
  • Long-lasting
  • Rather insensitive to craters
Disadvantages
  • Heavy
  • Requires maintenance
  • Mainly for private use

What are the characteristics of a cast aluminium griddle and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

Generally speaking, aluminium grill plates are somewhat narrower than grill plates made of other materials. These models are much lighter and therefore easier to handle. Although the range is somewhat smaller, there are different sizes and shapes of cast aluminium grill plates. The aluminium grill plate heats up quickly and distributes the heat very well, thus providing an even result. It is an inexpensive alternative and is well suited for travelling due to its low weight. However, with this material, residue can burn onto the grill plate. Therefore, this variant is not recommended.

Advantages
  • Heat-resistant
  • Lightweight
  • Even heat distribution
  • Gets hot quickly
Disadvantages
  • Burns in
  • Residue can remain

What are the characteristics of a pressed steel grill plate and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

Pressed steel grill plates are well suited for skilled grill masters and the catering trade. They are very resistant and also hold up well to cutting and chopping on the plate. Pressed steel is also an extremely good heat accumulator, which has a positive effect on the result. As pressed steel is a demanding material, it is rather not suitable for beginners. Incorrect handling can cause residues to burn in and shorten the life of the grill plate. However, the advantages of the pressed steel grill plate make it very suitable for demanding people.

Advantages
  • Heat-resistant
  • Extremely good heat storage
  • Resistant
Disadvantages
  • For advanced users
  • Burns in
  • Residue can remain

What distinguishes a stainless steel griddle and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

Stainless steel grill plates should be treated with caution. There is also the option of buying a grill plate made of enamelled stainless steel. These are coated with enamel and are therefore more resistant, and the heat is distributed better and protects the plate from burning. Non-enamelled stainless steel grill plates are not recommended. The food sticks to the plate and can only be removed when it is completely cooked through. This property is very unsuitable for plancha grilling. Furthermore, to prevent the ingredients from sticking to the grill plate, you would have to use plenty of oil to grease the plate. After prolonged use, the colour of the plate changes more quickly, making it less appetising.

Advantages
  • Heat resistant
  • Good heat distribution
  • More resistant
Disadvantages
  • Food sticks to the plate
  • Burns in
  • Discolours

Buying criteria: Use these factors to compare and evaluate grill plates

Before you buy a grill plate, you should be aware of what your desired grill plate can and should do. You should consider the following points:

  • Material
  • Intended use
  • Quality
  • Weight and size

Material

As already mentioned above, there are grill plates made of different materials, you can also read about the advantages and disadvantages. When it comes to the material, there are various factors that are important for a high-quality grill plate. For example, heat resistance. Since the plate is to be heated for grilling, it is essential that the plate can withstand 300°C without loss of quality.

Grill plates can be used to prepare a wide variety of dishes. Depending on which material is used, the end result also differs. (Image source: pixabay.de / buffetcrush)

It is also important that the grill plate stores the heat well and distributes it evenly. These properties are important so that you can spread your food all over the plate and still heat each piece evenly. You should also make sure that your new grill plate is resistant to cutting and bumping. If you want to turn over your ingredients and accidentally touch the grill plate, you don't want to get a scratch right away. It would also be ideal if the material did not require extensive care or become discoloured and unsightly after use.

Intended use

Depending on what you want to use your grill plate for, you have various options. For example, if you are looking for a grill plate specifically for plancha grilling, it is best to find out which material is suitable for this purpose. The thickness of the grill plate is also important. When you put your food on the grill, the temperature drops briefly. It is also important that the ingredients do not stick to the grill plate. If your incentive is that you don't have any problems with splattering fat or that nothing should fall through the grate, a simpler plate and therefore a cheaper model is sufficient. There are many different methods of grilling, so if you are not sure which grill plate suits you and your requirements, seek advice from a specialist shop.

Quality

As always, quality is a very important factor. The quality of a grill plate is not always obvious at first glance. The most important thing in this case is the material and the coating. You don't need one for every material, but for many the enamel makes a significant difference.

The thickness of the grill plate is also important, because if the plate is too thin, the heat cannot be stored so well.

Even if the price is often not a 100% indicator of quality, you can still look at what the average value is and then see what exactly the differences are between the most expensive and the cheapest product.

Weight and size

The size of the grill plate is important in order to be able to use it; if the grill plate is too big for the grill, it cannot be used to a limited extent. You have to make sure that the plate fits well on your appliance and, in the best case, that there is still room next to it for "normal" grilling. As far as weight is concerned, it should be noted that in many cases the thickness of the grill plate has a heat-retaining effect, and if the plate is too thin, it may bend due to the heat. It may take longer for a thicker plate to heat up, but this often depends on the material.

Trivia: Interesting facts about grill plates

Recipes for cooking with a griddle?

With the right grill plate you can conjure up all kinds of specialities. Depending on your taste, there are many different dishes and we have picked out one for you. In this video you can see how you can prepare juicy burgers with a plancha griddle.

Is an integrated grill plate useful?

A grill plate integrated into the grill can be useful if you don't want to use the grill for other purposes. There are also many ways to buy grill plates that are much narrower than the grill grate itself. This allows you to leave the plate in place and grill other food on the grill beside it.

If you have a grill plate that requires extensive cleaning, it may take more effort to clean it.

For example, you cannot put the griddle in the dishwasher or it is generally difficult to wash it in the kitchen.

How do I clean a griddle properly?

A grill plate must be cared for and properly cleaned in order to have a long life. However, you have to be careful because many materials require special cleaning and also react differently to cleaning utensils and agents. This table shows you how to clean your grill plate properly.

Material Cleaning/Care Caution
Steel Clean with water or ice throw. Afterwards, let it fry with a little oil before switching off the plate Do not scrub off the coating!
Stainless steel Also clean with water or egg cubes Do not use steel wool!
Enamelled cast iron Put a little oil on the kitchen paper and clean the plate with it Avoid thermal shocks, the plate could crack!

Image source: Unsplash.com / Vincent Keiman

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