The Tin Foil Ball Hack For Grill Grate Cleaning Will Save You In A Pinch

sausages on grill
sausages on grill - Dav_782/Shutterstock

Grilling is great -- and don't let the fact it isn't summer anymore squash your hopes for a backyard BBQ because you can still have fun grilling in the fall. But while grilling is great, it can come with a plethora of headaches. Fortunately, there are workarounds for seemingly all of these. Charcoal won't stay lit? Put a paper towel soaked in oil in the coals. Are things sticking to the grill? Rub the grates down with leftover meat fat. Having some trouble getting the grill lines right? Treat the grill like a clock.

But while all of these are issues, the single most challenging problem to solve -- and arguably the most important to the quality of your food -- is dealing with a dirty grill. Stuff gets caked on there and just won't come off, and there are all sorts of methods to deal with it -- but the best might be one of the simplest because all it requires is tin foil and a pair of tongs. That's right: all you might need to clean your grill is some balled-up aluminum foil, whose abrasive qualities are shockingly effective.

Read more: The 13 Best Steaks For Grilling

Aluminum Foil Gets Rough When You Ball It, And That's Just What You Want

aluminum foil background
aluminum foil background - Stock_colors/Getty Images

Aluminum foil has a surprising number of uses around the house, and this is one of the best ones. Though it's pliable and not rough to the touch in roll form, anyone who's ever grabbed it the wrong way can tell you that when you ball the stuff up, it turns into a mess of sharp crags and rough edges. But while that's a big pain when you don't mean to do it, here, that abrasiveness is made to work for you.

Start by using your grill's natural heat to burn off as much of what's stuck on there as you can; this should take care of some of the issues and save you time and effort later. From there, this method is super simple: just take a sheet of foil, ball it up, and hold it with a pair of tongs. Then scrub as your life depends on it, and it should take stubborn gunk off the grill without anything else added to the process.

There Are Also Other Ways To Deal With Dirty Grill Grates

baking soda on wooden spoon
baking soda on wooden spoon - Skhoward/Getty Images

That being said, the aluminum foil ball trick isn't the only way to deal with cleaning stubborn grill grates, and sometimes, you really need to hit those suckers from every possible angle. You can also use half an onion to clean a grill -- seriously. The natural acidity within an onion can often cut right through grease and grime (and it has some antibacterial properties to boot).

If those methods don't work, it might be time to bring in the big guns. Not abrasive cleaning chemicals; those are toxic and might not work that well anyway. Instead, use a mixture of baking soda (or vinegar) and dish soap, mix it into a paste, then rub it onto the grill grates. Give it about half an hour to set, then hit it with a wire brush, and it should come right off.

Whatever method you use to clean your grill, just make sure it stays clean because a dirty grill can be a health hazard, with bacteria hiding inside carbonized bits of BBQ sauce. It might feel like a pain, but it's absolutely worth it.

Read the original article on Daily Meal.