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A Barbecue Lover’s Guide to Buying the Best Grill Pan for Perfectly Seared Feasts
Are you mourning the end of outdoor grilling feasts after moving to a high-rise apartment? Or perhaps, you need the an ideal grill pan to embrace clean eating with healthy, low-carb meals? The right cooking tools let us enjoy our favorite foods without the need for extensive cookware and elaborate settings. A well-constructed grill pan is an ultimate tool for barbecue lovers, apartment dwellers, and healthy eaters. You don’t necessarily need a fire pit or an electric grill to enjoy a beautifully seared steak. Grill pans are designed with ridges and spacious cooktops to let the meats sizzle in their fats and juices, serving you a grease-free sear. What’s more, grilling with a grill pan is much easier and effortless, with minimal cleanup needs! However, there’s an overwhelming variety of designs, materials, and cooktops out there, making it challenging to find the right pan. We advise reflecting on your grilling needs and preferences and reading our guide to explore vital features. Bringing you the top grill pans of 2022 from the market in 3,2,1!Show contents
Buying Guide: Decoding the Anatomy of the Ideal Grill Pan
Decoding the anatomy of a grill pan is crucial to understanding features and specifications that maximize its utility. Our detailed buying guide will help you understand your grilling preferences to scoop up the most versatile grill pan to satisfy your needs.
Design & Dimensions
Dimensions of the cooking surface matter a great deal, and most grill pans usually come in 10-11 inches. We advise determining the ideal size by reflecting on your cooking and serving needs. If you cook for one or two people, a small grill pan should be sizable enough for grilling three to four hamburgers. But if you’re grilling to feed a crowd or a big family, a double burner grill pan is ideally suited for large batches.
Doubler burners cover two stovetops with their spacious rectangular-shaped surface area, packing enough space for several large hamburgers. Most grilling enthusiasts prefer square-shaped grill pans to enjoy an extended surface area, especially for meals that require single-layer grilling. If you’re planning to use the pan for sauteing or stir-frying, any shape will do nicely.
While square and rectangular grill pans provide extended surface area, round grill pans offer even heat distribution. If you need a pan that combines grilling and griddling features, consider investing in a reversible grill pan with ridged and smooth surfaces.
Material of Construction
Grill pans are constructed with numerous metals, and each material provides a different utility. It’s wise to reflect on your grilling preferences, convenience, and consider the maintenance needs of the material while choosing a grill pan.
If you like grilling the traditional way, a cast iron grill pan is a must-have for your kitchen. It’s the ideal material to grill at high temperatures, mimicking the experience and quality of an outdoor grill. You can pop it into the oven after searing the meat on the stovetop without worrying about damaging the pan.
However, cast iron is a high-maintenance commitment that demands regular seasoning, hand-washing, and immediate drying. Grilling fanatics looking for a low-maintenance cast iron pan should consider exploring enameled cast iron varieties to escape the finicky seasoning, cleaning, and drying demands.
Aluminum is a highly recommended and popular material when buying grill pans and super-functional cookware. Hard-anodized aluminum grill pans offer excellent value for money, as they undergo an extensive chemical oxidation process to build corrosion resistance and offer lifelong durability. Typically, hard-anodized aluminum grill pans have a nonstick coating, offering even heat distribution and superior conduction.
Cast aluminum is another popular and super-functional material constructed from molten aluminum, cast into a mold to create a highly refined, durable, and versatile cookware product. Cast aluminum grill pans are lightweight and savvy conductors, and you can find varieties of them layered with nonstick coating.
Ceramic grill pans are popular with culinary enthusiasts who prefer adding aesthetic and functional pieces to their kitchenware. Ceramic coated grill pans are designed with a sturdy metal base, such as stainless steel or aluminum, covered with a nonstick coating. These grill pans offer excellent heat conduction and distribution, but they’re not as durable as aluminum or cast iron.
Handles Matter Significantly
The wrong handle will quickly transform a grill pan into a useless and hazardous item. After all, you don’t want to burn your fingers every time you grill a hamburger. Metal and cast iron handles are ill-advised as they become extremely hot very quickly. Plastic handles stay cool to the touch, but grill pans with plastic fixtures aren’t oven-friendly.
We advise investing in dual-sided handles made with heavy material, such as cast iron or hard-anodized aluminum, for effortless utility. Some grilling enthusiasts prefer one handle, while others find it easier to operate grill pans with handles on both sides.
Grease channels, also known as pour spouts, are a dynamic feature that can make your grill pan an absolute dream to use and clean. Now, this feature isn’t absolutely necessary, and it will increase the cost of the product, but it is definitely worth the money.
Grill pans tend to accumulate hefty amounts of grease, preventing you from achieving that perfect sear that you enjoy. Grease channels are designed for effortless cleanup and eliminating the grease-buildup easily so you can enjoy searing your meats to perfection.
You don’t want to bring home a grill pan that works fine on the stovetop but crumbles inside the oven. Grill pans should be versatile and compatible with all heat sources and ideal for grilling several types of meat and ingredients.
You should ideally be able to use these pans on the stovetop, oven, campfire, and broilers, alongside preparing multiple recipes and meals. Be sure to examine the versatility and usability of the material before setting your heart on a grill pan.
Congratulations! Having covered the anatomy of grill pans, you are now an expert authority on buying the most durable and functional grilling cookware. However, word of caution; it’s easy to get carried away by cheap products marketed with big claims of durability and functionality, especially when you’re looking to cut corners.
We strongly advise against cheap grill pans sold by dubious manufacturers. The right grill pan will provide lasting durability and endless utility, as long as you take your time to find a product that’s worth your money.
Best Grill Pans Worth Considering In 20221– Best OverallCheck On Amazon
This Korean-manufactured grill pan offers excellent value for money combining top-notch features with a nominal price tag – everything a product needs to qualify for our best overall badge! It features a premium Teflon nonstick coating, the best in the market, coated five times with Teflon print designs for lasting durability.
Moreover, we can’t help but be impressed by the swirled channel design that makes grilling and searing so much easier for newbies in the grilling game. The swirled channel design adds more flavor to the food by draining the excess oil. What’s more, this grill pan features a fat-grease draining system to help you enjoy non-greasy pork belly and beef steaks. This dishwasher-safe and oven-friendly grilling product offers excellent value for money with minimal maintenance needs!2– Exceptional DurabilityCheck On Amazon
Here’s a grill pan for grilling enthusiasts who value durability and wish to invest in a product that will last longer and provide a versatile grilling experience. Constructed with hard-anodized aluminum, this grill pan is much more durable than most other cookware materials. The heavy-guage aluminum cooktop delivers even heat distribution to prevent those nasty hot spots that ruin the meat.
Plus, it comes with a flawless nonstick coating that makes grilling and cleaning incredibly effortless, and you won’t have to scrape off bits and pieces of the pan. This versatile pan works well on multiple heat sources, including halogen, ceramic, ovens, electric stoves, gas, and glass. You can pop it in the oven and dishwasher without a care in the world.3– Top-Rated on AmazonCheck On Amazon
Cuisinart is one of the most reliable and popular cookware brands trusted by families and restauranteers worldwide, and this premium-grade grill pan is a testament to its superior quality standards. This round grill pan is constructed with hand-anodized aluminum and a quantanium nonstick interior to deliver a matchless and effortless grilling experience.
We’re also quite impressed by the manufacturer’s attention to detail and features that enhance user convenience and prioritize safety. For instance, this grill pan features a cool grip handle to prevent burns and a drip-free rim for easy cleaning and eliminating excess oil/grease. The pan is tapered for clean and easy pouring, and the 12-inch cooktop is spacious enough to fit sizable fillets of meat without cramping the pieces!4– For Perfect Sear MarksCheck On Amazon
Most cookware items are constructed at a maximum temperature of 900F, which explains why they lose their nonstick coating and fall apart. What sets this grill apart is its unique construction, designed to get those perfect sear marks and an exceptional grilling experience. The heavy-gauge aluminum grill pan is created at a whopping temperature of 30,000F, to deliver unmatched durability and lasting nonstick coating.
Ninja has equipped this pan with its NeverStick technology that delivers excellent food release and makes the nonstick coating safe for metal utensils. The grill ridges are designed to allow grease, excess oil, fats, and liquids to drip away from the meat, while the deep edges minimize oil splatters. What’s more, it comes with an ergonomically designed stainless steel handle!5– Best Budget BuyCheck On Amazon
Grill enthusiasts hunting for a budget-friendly find should look no further than this durable and versatile grill pan from Itwani. It’s a super-functional grilling product that combines convenience with superior quality construction to make grilling effortless and enjoyable. It makes it easier for newbies to prepare perfect, restaurant-quality Takoyaki and many other flavorful grilled treats.
The pan features a premium-quality nonstick coating to prevent the ingredients from sticking to the surface. Cleaning and maintenance are very straightforward, and the aluminum alloy construction is exceptional within this price range. The thick and sturdy material delivers even heat distribution to prevent the meat from being undercooked or burnt.
People Also AskedQ: Which material is best for a grill pan?
A: Cast iron, hard-anodized aluminum, and stainless steel are excellent materials to invest in a durable and versatile grill pan. We advise reflecting on your grilling needs, heat sources, and maintenance preferences while selecting the material.Q: Should I buy an aluminum grill pan?
A: Grill pans designed with hard-anodized and cast aluminum offer lasting durability, versatility, even heat distribution, and effortless maintenance. They are an excellent investment, and most varieties come with a nonstick coating.Q: Is a grill pan useful for cooking steaks?
A: Grill pans are the ideal cookware to prepare steaks indoors without compromising the sear doneness and juicy flavor you adore.