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7 hacks for cleaning your barbecue

7 hacks for cleaning your barbecue

It's time to end your barbecue's winter of discontent. But no one enjoys getting rid of the grime and gunge during that first barbie clean of the season.

7 hacks for cleaning your barbecue

To ease the agony, here are our top chemical-free tips and hacks for making that chore simple and a bit more bearable.

Use your dishwasher

If you have one, make life easier for yourself by throwing any removable extras such as hotplates, grills and smoker boxes straight in the dishwasher – just as long as they’re dishwasher-safe.

At least that’s one job where you won’t have to get your hands dirty.

But as for the rest of the tasks, be prepared to get mucky.

Harness the power of steam

Start by using a hand-held steamer to blow off the cobwebs (probably literally) and loosen that first coating of grime and grease.

If you don’t have a steamer, fill a metal container full of boiling water, pop it in your barbecue, close the lid, and let nature take its course.

You’ll be amazed by how much of a head start the hot steam will give you in your race to get the barbecue clean by evening.

Pork Chops with Caraway Rub and Pull-Apart Bread Rolls

Read more: 14 BBQ recipes that never fail

Grab some baking soda

It seems there isn’t a domestic chore that baking soda can’t take care of, and tackling a revolting-looking barbecue is no exception.

A surprisingly powerful cleaning agent, soda is cheap, safe, effective and easy to use.

Start by sprinkling some straight onto the dirty surfaces.

Then, make a paste with some water, and start liberally applying it to all those areas where gunge has made itself home for the past six months.

Grab yourself a firm scouring pad or an iron wool pad and get to work scrubbing off all that unwanted grime and grease.

Arm yourself with white vinegar

Fill a spray can with one part water, one part white vinegar and set to work scrubbing the outside and inside of your barbecue.

This magical solution will leave your once-forgotten-looking piece of scrap sparkling just like new.

Soak utensils in coffee

Another of nature’s surprising cleaning agents thanks to its acidic qualities, grab a heap of old coffee grounds, mix them with water in a sizeable bowl or bucket and throw in your cooking utensils.

Leave to soak for one to two hours.

That will cut through any leftover grease and leave your tongs, spatulas and other tools gleaming.

Just ensure you rinse them well in water as coffee grounds, like sand, have a tendency to stick around.

Fire it up

Now that your barbecue is good as new on the inside and out, it’s time to fire it up.

But don’t think about throwing on the patties just yet.

A quick blast of heat will ensure any remaining particles of grease and gunge can evaporate into oblivion and eliminate any leftover odours that could spoil the delicious feast you’re about to serve up.

Grab an onion – and a beer

Chop an onion in half, and using a large fork, rub it over the bars of the warm grill.

Onions release juices which turn into steam and dissolve any final bits of grease and grime.

Ditto with any leftover or unwanted beer.

Soak a wire brush with some beer and give your grill and pans a final once-over.

You should use this particular trick to keep on top of your barbecue over the spring and summer.

Try after every barbecue you cook so that come the start of next spring, you won’t have quite such a big job on your hands.

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