Best Grill Brushes—Iron, Porcelain Enameled, Steel Grates

Bristles or no bristles? Scraper or no scraper? We look at the top grill brushes available right now, and what makes them the best.

Published Categorized as Buying Guides
Arinahabich /123RF

Finding that perfect grill brush can depend on the kind of grill you’re using. But much more than that, today’s grill brushes come with so many unique features.

It is almost expected these days that a grill brush should include a scraper, and increasingly, grill brush manufacturers are dropping metallic bristles. (They can dangerous.)

Other cool features we’re seeing include replaceable heads, dishwasher-friendliness, cleaning on a cold grill, and sometimes even a bottle opener. Some companies are even experimenting with different materials or even inventing entirely new ways to clean your grill. The choice can be overwhelming!

In this post, I’ll look at the top grill brushes for iron, porcelain enameled, and steel grates. Do note that some of the grill brushes in this article will work on multiple types of grill grates.

Best Grill Brushes for Iron Grates

Iron grate grills should be hot when cleaning and they maintain heat very well, so a grill brush with a long handle is best to prevent burns.

Iron grates pick
Kona Grill Brush and Scraper

An all-around top grill brush and scraper that can handle pretty much any goop or gunk on your iron grill grates.

Kona’s grill brush and scraper is definitely a brush invented with a great deal of experience. With a two-in-one brush, you can scrub with the bottom, and flip it over to scrap with the other side.

At 18″ (45cm) long, you won’t have issues reaching difficult spots with the Kona grill brush, plus it makes it easy to hold in two hands and apply pressure on those hard-to-remove patches.

This stainless-steel grill brush also has three rows of bristles making it a remarkably effective cleaner. Kona’s grill brush can also be used on porcelain enameled and steel grates.

Iron grates runner-up
Ignite Stainless Steel Cool Grill Brush

Perhaps one of the coolest grill brushes in this article, you can still benefit from bristle scrubbing but not worry about bristles breaking off.

The Ignite Stainless Steel Cool grill brush is another great option that combines a hefty brush and scraper but, there’s one major difference—it uses nylon bristles.

If you like the feel of using a brush with bristles, but want to keep safe, then this grill brush is perhaps your No. 1 option. But don’t use it on a hot grill!

The Ignite grill brush features a wide scraper made of stainless steel, and with a 16.75″ (42cm) handle, it provides plenty of leverage for two hands. Plus, it comes with a handy bottle opener.

Best Grill Brushes for Porcelain Enameled Grates

With porcelain enameled grates, it’s super important that whatever grill brush you use doesn’t damage the layer of enamel, so they shouldn’t be too sharp.

Porcelain enamel grates pick
AJIJING Grill Brush and Scraper, 2 Pack

Why buy one grill brush when you can have two? By combining two brush styles, there will be little you won’t be able to clean.

Ajijing’s grill brush is actually two brushes—both of which are stainless steel and come with scrapers—in two different sizes and shapes.

You’ll have more scrubbing options with this brush. The wider brush has a width of 6.3″ (16cm) and a slimmer, narrow brush of 3″ (7.6cm). Plus, if one brush breaks, you still have a spare.

To make the most use of the two, use Ajijing’s larger brush for the heavy-duty cleaning tasks, and the smaller brush for tougher areas to get that grill sparkling.

Porcelain enamel grates runner-up
Backyard Dudes BBQ Grill Cleaning Brass Brush

The longest grill brush on this list, it is made of brass instead of steel and works best when cleaning with steam.

At 21″ (53cm) long and 7″ (17.7cm) wide, Backyard Dudes’ BBQ Grill Cleaning Brass Brush is huge and will get your grill cleaned with little effort.

What makes this brush so interesting is that the bristles are made of brass instead of steel and you can stick this brush in the dishwasher when you’re done cleaning.

For the best results when using Backyard Dude’s brush, porcelain grills should be steamed at 410°F (210°C) using a bucket of water.

Best Grill Brushes for Steel Grates

Like iron grates, steel grates should be heated before cleaning, so a long handle is ideal. However, steel brushes don’t have to be as hefty as iron grates are smoother.

Steel grates pick
Grill Rescue BBQ Replaceable Scraper Cleaning Head

A non-metallic brush, it works on steam alone and without bristles. It could be considered one of the safest on this list.

The best choice for grillers looking to abandon brushes with bristles. Technically speaking, you might even call the Grill Rescue’s brush more of a sponge.

All you need to do is heat the grill to 400°F (204°C), dunk the brush in water, turn off the grill, and get scrubbing. With the Grill Rescue brush, there’s no need to scratch away with bristles.

The Grill Rescue brush also comes with a scraper and can be detached and cleaned in the dishwasher. And if the brush head gets ruined, just replace it.

Steel grates runner-up
Grate Valley Bristle-Free Cleaning Brush

Completely reimagining what a brush should look like without changing how it works, this brush is perfect for getting between the grates.

Made by GrillGrate, it may not look very impressive, but the Grate Valley brush has a double helix design, meaning instead of bristles, it uses the edges of large springs to clean.

Another great option for those looking for a safer grill brush alternative, the metal used in the Grate Valley brush is not likely to fragment and break off.

The Grate Valley brush is also designed to clean two sides at once and get deep into the valleys of your grill’s steel grates.

What Kind of Grill Brush Should I Use?

Many grill brushes now have more than one function—on top of the brush, they likely have a scrapper at the very least. So, look at what features you can get for your money.

Whatever grill you use, get a grill brush with a strong handle that offers plenty of leverage. Heating the grill can be dangerous, and if the handle breaks, you can burn yourself.

This is particularly the case with steel and iron grates which will maintain heat longer. Alternatively, you could opt for a brush that works without having to heat the grill.

And with porcelain enameled grill brushes, brushes shouldn’t be able to pierce the surface—it would ruin your grill grate.

Brushes for steel grates also don’t need to be as tough as brushes for iron grates, because they’re not as rough. So, you might be able to save a bit of cash with something a bit less hardcore.

Unfortunately, you cannot always tell the quality of a grill brush until you test it in person, so make sure you check reviews online before purchasing.

If you’re going for a steel brush, stainless steel will last you the longest. It’s easier to clean and won’t rust.

Plus, to get all the hard-to-reach places, a grill brush should be reasonably flexible.

And, if you go for a brush with non-metallic bristles, make sure you check if the grill should be hot before using it. You don’t want to melt your brush!

Why Not Use Wire Brush on a Grill?

It has been known for a while that the bristles of wire brushes can snap off and remain on the grill, end up in your food, and then be consumed.

These broken bristle pieces can then damage you internally, especially your stomach or intestines. In the worst-case scenario, you could even need surgery to remove bristles.

Because of this, many grillers have gone off wire brushes or any brush with bristles and now look more towards scrappers or other alternatives.

It is not illegal to use a wire brush, and plenty are still sold, but you should remember the risk that comes with them.

How to Clean a Grill Grate Without a Brush?

Cleaning a grill grate without a brush is way easier than you’d think. Aside from the obvious—lemons and onions—aluminum foil is super effective.

In a YouTube video, David Gafford of The Barbeque Lab says that all you need to do is scrunch aluminum foil into a ball and scrap it against your grill.

Gafford highlights that by doing this, the foil molds to the shape of your grill grates which makes it highly effective and even “polishes off the top really well” too.

This is a cheap and effortless way to clean a grill and removes the need for bristles. The only downside is that it could be seen as a little wasteful if you need a lot of foil.

In the end, you’ll likely throw away your aluminum foil as soon as you’ve used it, while a grill brush will last much longer (if it’s good quality, of course).

Why Trust Us

We spent days researching and rounding up the best grill brushes so you don’t have to.

Since not all grates are created equal, we divided our selection into three categories—grill brushes for iron, for porcelain enameled iron, and for steel grates. We then searched the internet for the highest rated brushes and read through all the customer reviews we could get our hands on, good and bad.

Drawing on the decades of combined grilling and meat smoking experience of our team, we scrutinized the shortlist and came up with the final list of winners, which you can see right before your eyes:

Thank you for stopping by, and we hope you found our roundup as useful as we enjoyed putting it together. In case you have a question or we missed something, do not hesitate for a second to leave a reply below.

By Craig Britton

As children, we’re told not to play with our food. But I find that food tastes best when you experiment with it. I love trying out new recipes and cooking techniques almost as much as I love eating the end result.

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