To season the grill, rinse the grill grate with plain water, then dry it thoroughly. The next step is to apply a fat – either vegetable oil or shortening – to the grates, coating all of the cast iron with it. Place the grill grate over a cold grill, then slowly increase the temperature to about 400 degrees and keep it there for about 40 minutes. Finally, allow the grill grate to cool.
For metal and cast iron grill grates, coat lightly with a high temperature oil like Canola or Peanut oil – wipe off any excessive oil, install the grates and fire up the grill. Heat the grill on high and let it burn for ~30 mins. This will burn all the solvents and impurities off of the heating elements, grill grates, etc. Note that porcelain grates won’t need a coat of oil, but will benefit from the burn in process to remove any chemicals/impurities that were applied by the manufacturer.
After the grates and panels have soaked, take them out and scrub them thoroughly. A long handled grill brush offers added leverage. For really stubborn gunk, a paste of vinegar and baking soda helps the brush scrub off the worst bits. Rinse them clean. Take care to thoroughly dry cast-iron grates. Now’s a great time to inspect porcelain grates for chips that may lead to rust later on.
From Alaska to California, from France's Basque Country to Mexico's Pacific Coast, Teo Spengler has dug the soil, planted seeds and helped trees, flowers and veggies thrive. A professional writer and consummate gardener, Spengler has written about home and garden for Gardening Know How, San Francisco Chronicle, Gardening Guide and Go Banking Rates. She earned a BA from U.C. Santa Cruz, a law degree from U.C. Berkeley's Boalt Hall, and an MA and MFA from San Francisco State. She currently divides her life between San Francisco and southwestern France.
There's another debate about seasoning steaks, and this one relates to black pepper. To begin with, let's agree that freshly ground black pepper is a must for the perfect steak. (And again, we're not talking about that preground black dust they sell at the grocery store. We mean whole black peppercorns that you grind yourself directly onto the steak.)
If you've purchased a new Weber grill, the company says that seasoning the cast iron grates isn't necessary. A porcelain enamel coating is already added to the cast iron so you don't need to season it at all. Instead, they recommend that when using a grill for the first time, you turn up the heat for about 15 minutes, then brush it clean with a stainless steel bristle brush.
Clean the cook box. Remove the cooking grates and use a stainless steel cook brush to brush all the excess grease and debris from inside of the grill into the collecting bottom tray. Then, remove the bottom tray and throw out the collected grease and debris. Some of the debris will be loose and easily disposable, whereas other debris will be caked on. You might need to use a scouring pad or a sharp putty knife to remove the stuck on debris.