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The Best Grill Brushes To Keep Your Grates Shiny And Clean

No matter how neat you are, grilling can be a messy affair. Drippings of cheese and fats congeal on the grates, leftover food burns down and fuses to the grill, and if you live in an especially humid or rainy climate, the grates can develop rust. But with a little bit of elbow grease, the best grill brushes are strong enough to clean even the most stubbornly soiled grates. Our top pick for most home grillers is the Grillart Grill Brush, which has three rows of stiff metal bristles to provide excellent cleaning coverage.

You don’t need to be a pro grillmaster to understand the importance of keeping your grates spick-and-span. “Cleaning your grill is absolutely essential to prolong the life of the grilling surface, whether it is steel, porcelain or ceramic, and a good grilling brush is a very handy tool,” says barbecue judge Harry Miller, who sits on the board of directors for the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo. But the type of grill brush matters. If you grill on a porcelain or ceramic surface, you want a softer brush “to help prevent damage to the coating while removing food particles and residue,” he says. Meanwhile, “a steel brush will work fine for stainless or steel surfaces.” Ahead, here are the seven best grill brushes to buy in 2024.

Best Grill Brush Overall

A Stiff-Bristled Workhorse

Grillart Grill Brush

Materials: Stainless steel, plastic | Length: 18 inches | Hot cleaning capable: Yes

Pros:

  • Three rows of stiff metal bristles
  • Long handle helps increase leverage
  • Removable scraper tool included

Cons:

  • Bristles bend over time
  • Scraper requires retightening during heavy use

If your idea of a great grill brush uses the classic approach of stiff wire bristles, then the Grillart Grill Brush is going to be a hit with you. Rather than arranging its tough steel bristles in the usual rectangular grid, this brush has three parallel rows of bristles which stick out from central support posts in a circular pattern, thus offering excellent coverage. As you push and pull this brush along the length of your grill’s grates, the bristles can adroitly scrape the top and sides of each tube of the cooking grates, scraping away bits of food, grease and char.

Better still, for those extra stubborn bits of grill scum, the brush comes with a removable scraper tool. It attaches to the head of the grill brush with a simple washer, wing nut and bolt combination, and the stainless steel scraper features various cutout patterns that let it fit into grates of varied size and spacing. With this solid steel scraper and those many slender but stiff bristles working together, your grill will be looking great again even after an epic summer BBQ.


Best Budget Grill Brush

Low Cost, High Quality

Cuisinart Stainless Steel Grill Cleaning Brush

Materials: Stainless steel, plastic | Length: 16.5 inches | Hot cleaning capable: No

Pros:

  • Great low price point
  • Thick, sturdy handle
  • Built-in hanging loop

Cons:

  • Not safe for use on hot grill
  • Bristles occasionally detach

It’s refreshing to see a brand with name recognition as strong as Cuisinart sell a product at a price so affordable it’s in range for pretty much all consumers, and that’s just the case with Cuisinart’s Stainless Steel Grill Cleaning Brush. This is a basic tool with stiff steel bristles arranged on a roughly square-shaped head, with a flat scraper tool protruding from the front of the brush. What’s more, it has a little hanging loop at the end for easy storage.

It’s also popular: At time of publication, the Stainless Steel Grill Cleaning Brush had well over 8,000 5-star reviews on Amazon. Just don't use this brush while the grill is hot, as the bristles are set into plastic, which can melt at high heat.


Best Steam Grill Cleaner

A Deep-Cleaning Pick That Uses The Power Of Steam

Grill Rescue Barbecue Cleaner

Materials: Heat-retardant foam, synthetic fiber, plastic | Length: 16 inches | Hot cleaning capable: Yes

Pros:

  • Uses steam heat for deep cleaning
  • Washable and replaceable head
  • Built-in steel scraper

Cons:

  • Does not clean side of grates well
  • Clips that secure head break too easily

Any experienced grill master will tell you that one of the best ways to remove stubborn grease and grime from a grill is with water (superheated water that turns to steam using the grill’s own heat)—and the Grill Rescue Barbecue Cleaner makes steam cleaning your grill easier than ever. Instead of scrubbing away with a wet rag (and some heat-safe gloves), this hardware uses a sponge-like block made of a heat-resistant foam wrapped in a rugged Aramid fiber cover.

You fire the grill up, let it burn for 15 minutes, then cut the heat. Then, quickly dip the grill cleaner’s head into water and then scrub away at the hot grates. The instant steam helps break up grill gunk and sends it falling away from the grates, and the fabric won’t scratch steel, iron or ceramic surfaces. While this tool can't get to the sides of a grill grate as well as a brush with bristles, it leaves the top of the grates looking shiny and nearly new. And when it becomes decidedly less than new itself, you can put the cleaning head in the dishwasher or replace it.


Best Bristle-Free Grill Brush

No Lost Bristles Here

Grillart Bristle-Free Grill Brush

Materials: Stainless steel, plastic | Length: 18 inches | Hot cleaning capable: Yes

Pros:

  • No risk of detached wires
  • Large scraper built in
  • Wide cleaning area

Cons:

  • Not as effective as metal bristles
  • Difficult to clean coils

If the idea of a metal bristle detaching from a grill brush and finding its way into your next bite of steak, salmon or portobello strikes fear into your heart, the Grillart Bristle-Free Grill Brush can put you at ease. In lieu of metal bristles, it uses coils of metal wire to form its scraping surface. These coils easily clean the tops and sides of grill grates, and the built-in scraper can break loose even the most recalcitrant gobs of grill gunk. The brush has an ergonomically-shaped plastic handle and a hanging loop on its end.

While this type of brush is not as effective at scraping away build-up as a brush with wire bristles, many people can deal with some extra elbow grease needed to ensure they never risk eating a sliver of metal. And the broad shape of the head allows you to clean multiple grate tubes at once, so that can make up for the extra effort needed.


Best Nylon Grill Brush

Gentle Yet Tough

Grillaholics Essentials Nylon Grill Brush

Materials: Nylon, steel | Length: 18 inches | Hot cleaning capable: No

Pros:

  • Won’t scratch grill grates
  • Long handle adds leverage
  • No risk of ingesting metal slivers

Cons:

  • Can't be used on hot grill
  • Handle breaks easily if brush is dropped

If you’re concerned about scratching your grill’s grates—which is a perfectly understandable concern, especially if your prized grill is new—then this Grillaholic’s brush is a savvy choice. Its nylon bristles are plenty tough enough to catch and drag away burned-on bits of grease, meat, cheese and more, but they won’t scratch stainless steel, cast iron or ceramic grill grates. (They also ensure you’ll never eat a metal bristle, of course.) Meanwhile, the brush has a long handle that allows for excellent leverage and even two-handed use, so go ahead and lean in on things.

Just don't use this grill brush on a hot grill, as the nylon bristles will melt at high heat. But don’t worry: That lack of heat resistance aside, this nylon bristle grill brush should last about as long as a brush with metal bristles. It’s tough and can stand up to regular use.


Best Metal Grill Scraper

For The Most Stubborn Grit

XYK BBQ Grill Scraper

Materials: Metal, wood | Length: 9.8 inches | Hot cleaning capable: Yes

Pros:

  • Sturdy metal construction
  • Heat-resistant wooden handles
  • Affordable

Cons:

  • Handle too short for use on hot grill
  • Does not remove finest particles

If you want to skip the brush of it all and go straight for the all-metal scraper, then the XYK BBQ Grill Scraper is a great choice. It has cutouts in multiple different shapes and thicknesses to snugly fit around grill grate tubes of varied thickness, giving a close scour as you work at the grease and grit. Its broad handle has wooden grips so the scraper won’t be too hot to handle, even if it was resting near the hot grill or was sitting in direct sunlight. (And yes, that is a bottle opener built into the center of its head.)

Granted, this grill scraper can't give you as fine and even a cleaning as you get with a grill brush, but it’s so low priced that you can always also buy one of those and take your grill cleaning kit to the next level. Also, note that it is on the shorter side, so you need to wear heat-resistant gloves while you clean.


Best Wooden Grill Scraper

Not Grating On Grates

Easy Function Wooden Grill Scraper

Materials: Pine | Length: 15 inches | Hot cleaning capable: No

Pros:

  • Conforms to grill grate shapes
  • Made with sustainable wood
  • Doesn’t scratch grates

Cons:

  • Handle too short for use on hot grill
  • Does not weather well

If you are looking for a grill scraper that is guaranteed not to damage the grates of your grill, then the Easy Function Wooden Grill Scraper is a great bet. Made of sustainable pine wood, this scraper is gentle on grates—in fact, it gets to know them over time. The more you use it, the more the semi-soft wood conforms to the unique pattern and thickness of the tubes of your grill grades, providing a closer cleaning every time you use it.

Now, the scraper doesn’t give as close or precise a cleaning as a grill brush wood, but it’s great for getting the bigger bits of gunk off. Just don’t leave the scraper outside, as exposure to rain or direct sunlight causes it to weather and breakdown rather quickly.


Why Trust Forbes Vetted

  • Forbes Vetted’s home and kitchen section is overseen by three experienced editors: deputy editor Rebekah Lowin, senior editor Amanda Arnold and editor Sholeen Damarwala.
  • The author of this article, Steven John, is a self-described grill guy who loves cooking with charcoal, gas and open flames. With lots of grilling comes lots of grill cleaning, and over the course of his many years of al fresco cooking, he’s used every type of grill brush and cleaning tool you see featured here.
  • For additional insight, John consulted two people who know their way around a grill: professional chef and food blogger Scott Carter of Dishes with Dad, plus Harry Miller, a barbecue judge who’s on the board of directors for the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo. John asked them about their favorite grill brushes, as well as their insights into how best to clean a grill.
  • We regularly review this story to ensure our product picks remain up to date. It was last refreshed in May 2024.


How We Chose The Best Grill Brushes

  • We identified the most popular grill brushes from trusted brands like Grillart and Cuisinart, sold on major retailers like Amazon.
  • John factored in his own first-hand experience with top-rated grill brushes. Additionally, he read through customer reviews and noted average star ratings.
  • Keeping in mind the buying tips from our experts, we considered factors like material, handle length and hot cleaning capabilities.

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