Cast Iron vs Stainless Steel Grill 

When you are throwing a party and your friends have some grilling advice for you then you might sit and start to think about the better result. Some will say that the cast iron grill is the best but some will say that stainless steel does the job the best. You ultimately have to decide which is the best one for yourself. You can not just do it on a whim. You need to be careful about your choice and do your research on the grills properly before you take any step. This is why we are here with this article. Take a look. 

Overview Of Cast Iron Vs. Stainless Steel 101

Cast iron and stainless steel are common materials that are used in our everyday life. We are going to take a look at the material first so that you can understand what we dealing with. 

Cast Iron

Cast iron has been used as a cooking material for many years. Pure iron is soft and can be cut using a knife. Cast iron is hard because it has carbon in it's composition. It is hard and durable but the only problem is that cast iron is known to be brittle. There are two kinds of cast iron that you can use. The first one is the uncoated cast iron that is black and porous. It has a rough texture to it. There are other cast iron grates that are coated with porcelain or enamel. 

The porous nature of the cast iron is going to allow the oil and juices to enter the material and that is how the grill becomes seasoned. This is the process that many grill masters use. The oiled grates can provide the non stick property and there are no added substance in the grill that can affect the flavor of your food. The porcelain covered cast iron grates are going to be more non stick than the normal one but beware that it will break once you drop it. Scrubbing the grill over a period of time can also cause hairline cracks. This will not happen in a normal cast iron grill. 

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is a revolutionary material that was created for humans. When you see a silver grill, that doesn't necessarily mean that you are going to get a stainless steel product. You have to check the composition of the model to be sure. Many models can look like that but that means that you have to understand the difference between the two. Normal steel or cheap grade steel does not look much different than stainless steel in the first glance. But stainless steel will last you the longest. 

It is a myth that stainless steel does not get any wear or tear. It's just that it is very durable so it is going to be a long time in service. You can rely on stainless steel for the years to comes. It is also great for the non stick property. Many people prefer stainless steel over high gauge steel because they get all the benefits of the material. 

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Cast Iron Grills?

Now that we have taken a look at the materials, we need to understand the pros and cons of the different materials so that we can compare it properly. We are going to start with cast iron so take a look. 


  • Cast iron can retain the heat very well so you can depend on the grill to spread the heat evenly through the surface of the grill. This will allow the grill grate to sear the parts that are in touch with the surface and the grill mark will be prominent on your food. We know some people like to have those grill marks on the food as it makes the grilling experience more authentic.
  • It can last for a long time if you take proper care of it. Yes, it is not going to be as durable as the stainless steel but it is good enough.
  • The cast iron grill grates are perfect for food that does not require to cook for a long time because there directly transfer the heat to the food.


  • You have to take extra care of the grill grates while cleaning them. Seasoning the grates is also very important.
  • The cast iron can rust easily so you need to be careful. Sometimes it can rust even when you are taking proper care of it, if the temperature or weather is humid.
  • They are extremely heavy so that can make the task of moving around a bit difficult.

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Stainless Steel Grills?

So here we are with the pros and cons of the stainless steel grills. We are sure that you have been looking forward to giving it a read. Take a look. This will help you determine whether you are ready for the grill. 


  • It heats up quickly and reaches the temperature that you want quickly too. You do not have to waut for a long time while preheating your grill.
  • The stainless steel is good to avoid any rust or corrosion. They are stainless because of that feature. It can last for years.
  • You do not have to take extra special care of the stainless steel grill. You just need to keep it clean as a regular grill. It is very convenient and easy to maintain.


  • It cools down easily so it won't retain the heat well. Once you take off the heat source, it is going to cool down in a matter of minutes.
  • If you pay for low quality stainless steel then it won't last long.
  • The grill can lose the non stick property over time.

Which Should You Buy?

The grill that you are going to buy also depends a lot on the type of food that you are cooking. This is why you are going to need some research for the best output. We have seen many people pay no attention to this. Cast iron is going to take a significant amount of time to heat up than stainless steel. You have to understand that it is very important for cooking methods to have the different ranges of temperature. You will get the good grill marks on the food when you are cooking on the cast iron grill and you will also see that it retains the heat properly for a long time. 

Stainless steel heats up fast and it is also going to lose the what fast once the heat source is removed. The Maillard reaction causes the meat to darken where it is touching the grill grates and it can form a very good crust that adds to the flavor of the food. This means that the grill marks are not just for show, they actually improve the taste. Chicken is a very good choice for grilling on either of the grill grates. Stainless steel is not good for thinner cuts of meat or delicate products like fish. 

Vegetables can be cooked well on the grills. You can even make a pizza on the stainless steel grill. If you want to cook smaller pieces of vegetables then you might have to go for the cast iron grill grate. 

Cleaning The Different Grates

It doesn't matter whether you have the stainless steel grill grate or the cast iron one. You need to keep your grill clean so that you can get the best result out of the grill. This will ensure that you do not have to deal with the unwanted smoke from the grill that can affect the taste of your food. If you take proper care of your grill then it can last you for a long period of time. There are people who will leave the task of cleaning the grill but it is better to clean it right after the cooking process. There is a slight difference between the cleaning of the cast iron and the stainless steel grill grate. Here is how you can clean them both. 

Caring for Stainless Steel Grates 

There is a method where you can apply an aluminum foil at the grill when it is still hot. The heat will allow the food particles stuck to the grill get off. This is said to be perfect for the stainless steel because it does not take much time to cool off. Once you see that the grill has cooled off, you can take off the foil and then scrub the particles gently with a nylon brush since they will already be hardly hanging on to the grill grates. 

If you plan to deep clean your grill then you can go for a different method. This is for occasional cleaning. Place the grill grate into the sink and then sprinkle baking soda on it. You then need to spray vinegar on the grill grates. It will foam up. You need to scrap it with a wire brush. Rinse it with water and then allow it to dry completely before you put it back. 

Caring for Your Cast Iron Grates

If you clean your cast iron grill grate properly then it is going to last you for a long time. Allow the heat of the grill to burn off the food from the cast iron grills. Then you can gently scrub off the remaining large stuck food portions with the help of the wire brush. It you have new cast iron grill grates then you need to season them properly. There is a bad reputation of cast iron grill grates in the market because they tend to rust easily. Grilling experts have said that it's because you are not taking proper care of the grill. 

How To Prevent Food From Sticking To Your Grates

You do not want your good food to stick to the grill. You want to easily move the food around and make sure that you get the best result. The delicious crust is very important so you need to make sure that you are getting a the food off the grill with the crust still on. What's the point of grilled food if you do not have the delicious crust?

There are many ways to ensure this. You can go for a non stick surface so that you do not have to worry about the sticking for some time. Many grill grates loses the nonstick property over time. There are people who say that you need to oil the grill grate for good result and some people also suggest oiling the food. You also need to wait before you flip the good food. Do not flip too early. Preheating the grill is also a good way to do this. Make sure that there is a thick layer of oil between the grill grates and the food. We have found this to be the best solution for the particular problem.


That's the end of the article. We do hope that you have understood the difference between the cast iron grill and the stainless steel grill after giving this article a read. We had a fun time writing about the different materials and how they are better than the other. Remember that they both are very different from each other and you pick the one of your choice. We did our best to tell you all about the pros and cons. If you have been paying attention then you know which one is best for you. Thank you so much for giving this article here a read. Have a fun time grilling with your friends and family.