How to Oil a Grill

by Justin Davis ; Updated September 28, 2017

The best way to stop food from sticking to your grill is to oil it down before cooking.

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Summer is grilling season, and that can mean several things to chefs who love the outdoors; smoky and tender foods, and food stuck to your grill. The process of cooking a piece of meat or fish over high heat caramelizes the sugars on the outside of the food, causing them to stick to the non-coated steel bars of the grill. Burnt food bits stuck to your grill can cause uneven cooking and a burnt, bitter taste on your food. The solution to food stuck on your grill is to oil down your grill grate before cooking anything on it.

Turn the heat on your grill up to high and wait for 5 minutes for the grill to heat up.

Clean any stuck pieces of food off of your grill by scrubbing them off with a grill brush.

Fold several paper towels into a thick pad. Pour 1 tablespoon of canola oil into a small bowl and bring it to the grill.

Grab your paper towel pad with your metal tongs and dip it into the oil.

Run the oiled paper towel pad up and down the grill grate. Coat the grill once, then close the grill top to complete the oiling process.


  • Use a slab of bacon or steak fat to add extra flavor to your grill, while still oiling it.

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About the Author

Justin Davis has worked in psychological and health research since 2008, focusing his writing on health, home and cultural activities. He is an active and contributing member of Phi Kappa Phi National Honors Society and Psi Chi Psychology Honors Society. Davis holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Delaware.