Choosing the Best Grill Pan for Your Needs

Grilling out has become one of America’s favorite pastimes. That being said, cooking outside does have its downfalls. Sudden summer showers during a cookout can ruin the mood as well as the food. For some people, space is too limited for grilling to be practical. Others live in apartment complexes where owning a grill is prohibited. Either way, adding a grill pan to your kitchen arsenal can greatly extend your range. If your looking at the best grill pans of 2019, keep a few things in mind before making a purchase.

Material Matters

Most experts highly recommend cast iron grill pans. They heat evenly and add an unbeatable flavor to foods. This doesn’t mean all the others don’t have benefits of their own, though. Each alternative comes with its own set of attributes.

From another angle, the type of stove you own should be considered when deciding which type of grill pan to purchase. Cast iron is an incredible option for gas stoves, but it’s not the best choice for glass or induction cooktops. Enamel grill pans work well for induction cooking whereas ceramic may be a good option for electric stoves.

Ridges Can Lead to Heartbreak

Ridges in grill pans are what give food those lovely charred lines so reminiscent of an actual grill. Though all grill pans are equipped with ridges, not all of them are the same. Some have low, shallow ridges whereas others are more raised. In most cases, raised ridges provide more satisfying grill marks and help prevent overcooking. Though food may take longer to cook on pans with raised ridges, the flavor and texture are well worth the wait.

Depth is Important

Grill pans range from extremely shallow to incredibly deep. Shallow ones tend to work best for steak, chicken, pork chops and grilled veggies though they’re not limited to these options. For meats that generate a lot of grease while cooking, those shallow pans could leave you with a mess to clean up. Deeper pans are best for greasy foods, and they’re perfect for one-dish meals or those with sauces and gravies.

All the fun and flavor of the grill doesn’t have to be sacrificed for extenuating circumstances. Grill pans offer a great deal of versatility, but not all are created equally. Consider the types of foods you’ll be cooking, your cooktop and the composition of the various grill pans on the market before choosing one.