Jun 09, 2022 | Samuel Albert

What kind of grill brush and chimney starter is best?

BBQing is not always fun. The cleaning and maintenance can be rather dull and tiring. Kickstarting the grill fire can be challenging as well. But, with the right tools in hand, your backyard grilling experience can continue to be fascinating.


The best grill brush arguably is a stainless steel coil grill brush. It doesn't shed any bristles while cleaning. In addition, the long handle with a good grip and its metal build makes it an efficient cleaning tool while the grill is still hot.


The best chimney starter is one that has a sturdy build, an ergonomic handle, and lights up the coals in a few minutes.


Outdoor grilling is the best bet when we aim for the authentic smoky flavor in our grilled food. But the hard fact is that it can take a whole afternoon if we don't know how to start our fire and can spend the entire afternoon struggling to start the fire.


And when it comes to grill brushes, make no compromise for quality as the safety of your family is more valuable than those few extra bucks.


Before choosing your pick, let's take a sneak peek into the grill brushes and chimney starters available in the market.

       

What Materials Are Used to Make a Grill Brush?

photo by RODNAE Productions / pexels 

A wide array of grill brushes are available in the market. Brass, stainless steel, copper, nylon, cast iron, and aramid fiber are a few good options.


Let's take a close look at the metal brushes first. While vigorously cleaning the hot grill, the metal bristles break off from the grill brush. And much to our dismay, these tiny metal scraps stay on the grill grates, and when we cook the next meal on the grill, they get stuck to the food. Thus, they find their way to our stomachs, causing adverse health effects.


So, the bristled feature in grill brushes waves a red flag for me; no matter what bold promises any grill brush manufacturer makes claiming its proven safety - I still opt to stay away from it.


What can I use instead of a wire grill brush?

Coiled stainless steel brushes come to our rescue as the wire grill brushes have failed us badly. So, if you are looking for a safe metal brush option and are very keen on cleaning your grill while it is still hot, this one is a must try. 


No matter how roughly you use it, it will not spill any metal strands, making it a safe and desirable option.


This model has just one minor problem: cleaning it at corners and in between grates can be tricky with its design. Else, it does the job perfectly well.


Can I use a nylon grill brush for grill cleaning?

Nylon brushes are grill friendly as it doesn't scratch the enamel coating and doesn't pose any health hazards. The drawbacks are that you can never clean with it on a hot grill, and so you need to exert more force while scrubbing with it.


What kind of BBQ brush is safe?

PHOTO BY Francesco Paggiaro / PEXELS 

The safest BBQ brush is the Aramid grill brush made by Grill Rescue. Use this brush on a hot grill heated up to 400 degrees by dipping it first into the water. The steam generated while cleaning the hot grill cleans the grill efficiently. Additionally, the metal scraper that comes with the brush scrubs off the burnt food residue and grease between the grates flawlessly.


Though buying this is a pricey deal, it is worth the money spent when you calculate the long life of this hardy grill brush.  


What kind of brush do you use on a stainless steel grill?

All metal brushes work great for stainless steel grills. Once your grilling is over, use a grill brush to gently clean off all the food residue while the grill is still hot. Take care not to make any dents or ruin the smooth surface of the stainless steel grill. You can try sprinkling baking soda and vinegar to help ease the cleaning process and make the stubborn grease relent without exerting much force.


Do You Need a BBQ Chimney to Start Your Grill Fire?

PHOTO BY kliempictures / PIXABAY 

Absolutely not. There are many other ways to start a charcoal grill, but using a chimney starter is a sure way to ignite your coals.


Getting your fire started is the first step to getting your BBQ grill started. Unfortunately, if you don't know the knack of it, you could eventually be fanning up the flame with teary eyes, and it can be such a waste of time. So, if you can relate to the teary-eyed experience, you definitely need a BBQ chimney starter. 


What Is A Chimney Starter?

A chimney starter is a simple piece of equipment that helps you light the charcoal briquettes quickly in a few minutes. The live coal is then easily transferred into your BBQ using the handle, and you can start grilling in a jiffy.


Many of us might think, "What is the big deal! I can light up the flame with the help of lighter fluid." Yes, it is faster to do it that way, but what about the aftertaste and the dangerous toxins accumulated in your food. We don't want to risk spoiling the integrity of the food, do we?


How to Use a Charcoal Chimney? What are Some Lighting and Safety Tips?

PHOTO BY Devon Rockola / PEXELS 

  1. Buy a charcoal chimney, the size of which will depend on the size of your grill. The bigger your grill, the larger your chimney needs to be.
  2. Protect your points of contact wearing heat-resistant hand gloves.     
  3. Crumple up some newspaper and add it to the bottom for easy lighting purposes. In addition, you can also add lighter cubes or wood wool for the fire to catch up quickly. 
  4. Fill the chimney with charcoal briquettes according to your need - more if you are in for a big meal and less if you want to cook up a small one.
  5. Place the chimney in a kamado or on a stone - don't spoil your pavement. Now, set the paper on fire.
  6. The slots in the chimney help in air circulation, so take care that you don't overstuff the chimney. Blowing some air through the holes can also help.
  7. Your gleaming coals are ready in no time. Pour the hot coal into the grill carefully. A sturdy handle is a must for a chimney starter.
  8. Wearing proper footwear is also mandatory as the hot charcoal may accidentally spill out and harm your feet.
  9. Top up with some charcoal if necessary and start BBQing.

There are many other methods to start a grill. Looft lighter and electric lighter methods are a few excellent options.

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