Note: This post is part of the “Kamado 101 – The Definitive Guide to Amazing Barbecue” series, in which I cover everything from the foundational aspects of Kamado cooking all the way through advanced concepts designed to transform you into a backyard barbecue pitmaster. View the entire series here.
Kamado Grills, if properly taken care of, can provide you with a lifetime of delicious and perfectly-cooked meals. The trick to getting the most out of your grill is, like with all things, to give it a little love. Just like with a regular grill, ceramic grills require a bit of upkeep, and should be deep cleaned at least twice a year (if not more) depending on use.
- A dirty grill in need of some love
- A plastic scrub brush
- Shop vac or scoop for removing ash
Steps to Deep Clean Your Grill
The nice thing about ceramic grills like the Kamado is that they really act like a self-cleaning oven. All you really need to do is heat it up, let it sit, and the brush it all down again. This will help not only clean off anything that’s burnt on, but it will also sterilize the grill.
So, without further ado, here are the steps:
- Start a fire in the bottom of the grill
- Place heat deflector rack with deflector on it. Add grill (or other cooking surfaces like pizza stone)
- Close lid and bring up to 650º F or 700° F
- Let heat for 30 minutes to an hour
- Open vent and let cool completely (overnight is best)
- Remove the accessories, grill, and heat deflector rack
- Clean out charcoal
- Carefully remove the fire ring and fire box
- Remove remaining ash
- Take a bristle brush and brush down everything: the inside of the grill, the ceramic pieces, the grill, etc
- Use a shop vac to clean up the ash, or remove it with a scoop or damp cloth
- Reassemble ceramics and place deflector
- Spray the grill with cooking spray
- Replace grill, and wipe down the outside of the grill, if desired
Presto! Clean, shiny grill ready for another season of delicious cooking. This should be done at least twice a year, depending on how often you use your Kamado Grill. I also recommend that you check the bands on your grill when you do a deep clean, but we’ll get into that in another post. For now, take a step back and admire that squeaky clean grill just waiting for more grilling and smoking goodness!!