A Big Green Egg is an investment. In order to get the most for your money, it is important to take care of your grill so that it will last for years to come. A good cleaning will allow you to remove most of the gunk that has been accumulated over many instances of cooking and BBQ smoking. While some Eggheads will argue you never have to clean your grill, most agree that removing excess oil and grease will improve the quality of your cooking.
There are a few ways to clean your grill, from burning off stuck-on grime after using your grill to a full wipe-down and ash clearing. The type of cleaning you do will depend on how often you do it. These methods will also work with other kamado-style grills, such as Kamado Joe, Primo and Saffire grills.
Important note: since the Big Green Egg is ceramic, never use alcohol or other cleaning chemicals. This will cause the chemicals to seep into the surface and will impart a bad taste to your food. Similarly, do not use water to clean the Egg. Water can be absorbed into the Egg and may crack the surface with repeated heating and cooling.
After you cook, it is a good idea to close your Egg and let it continue to burn for a while, then scrape the steel grill with a grid tool and/or steel mesh brush. This helps to remove any excess food particles that are stuck on. If you do this every time, you will not have to worry about an overload of junk inside your Egg. You can also use a scrubber to clean the baking stone or heat plate. Scrape off the Conveggtor if you used that as well. Use an ash tool to stir the ash from the coals.
While the Big Green Egg doesn’t create a lot of ash, it’s smart to clean it out every few cooks to make it easier to bring your grill up to temperature and keep it that way. All you have to do is use an ash tool to brush through the remaining coals once they have cooled. You can reuse these. The rest of the ash that falls through the grate can be removed with an ash tool and discarded. You can also wipe down the exterior with a cloth to get rid of any dust or ash and wipe the vent on top with some light cooking oil.
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While opinions vary, it’s not a bad idea to give your Egg a good deep cleaning a few times a year. This means removing all the inner parts and removing the stuck-on food and liquids, ash and other bits of debris in your grill. Clean the interior with a plastic bristled-brush or use a ball of aluminum to remove any leftover gunk. You can use a shop-vac to get all the ash out of the bottom of your egg. To perform a self-clean, much like an oven, replace all the parts and add charcoal. Then bring your grill up to around 600 degrees and let it burn for about an hour. Make sure to clean out the vent holes afterward.
Pro Tip: Replace your gasket at the same time.
That’s all you need to do. With care and maintenance, your grill will last for years to come. If you have any questions, find a Pinch A Penny near you that deals Big Green Eggs and ask the experts!