So, you just got yourself a brand-new stainless-steel griddle. They are really great pieces of cookware because they are very versatile in the sense that you can cook many different foods on them and, for the most part, they have large surfaces for large-scale cooking. That being said, although stainless steel is a great material, it does have its faults.
You may have heard of seasoning griddles, whether cast iron or stainless steel. This is a method of protecting your griddle from damage, plus it helps make cooking easier too.
So how do you season a stainless-steel griddle, how often should you do it, and why should you do it? These are all questions which we will answer right now.
Why Do Stainless Steel Griddles Need to Be Seasoned?
We’re not talking about the kind of seasoning you put on your food. No salt or pepper here. Seasoning a griddle or any other kind of stainless-steel cooking surface that gets used a lot is always a good idea, for a variety of reasons. So, why should you season your stainless-steel griddle?
- Prevent sticking – Food can get stuck to stainless-steel griddles if you cook without oil or grease. Yes, many people just add the oil or grease when cooking, but this is usually not quite enough to get the job done.
The fact of the matter is that regularly seasoning your stainless-steel griddle with an oily coating will help prevent food from sticking whenever you cook. Of course, cooking on a surface where food constantly sticks is not fun.
- Prevent rust – Another reason why it is important to season your stainless-steel griddle is so that it does not rust. Rust will occur when the steel is exposed to lots of air and moisture, especially for long periods of time.
It can be a bit dangerous to cook on a rusty surface, but more than that, it’s also just kind of nasty. Nobody wants to eat food cooked on a super rusty griddle.
How to Season a Stainless-Steel Griddle
As you have probably realized by now, seasoning a stainless-steel griddle is not just beneficial, it’s actually more or less necessary. Properly seasoning your stainless-steel griddle will prevent food from sticking to it, prevent it from rusting, and will help to prevent many other forms of damage as well.
Let’s go over how to season your stainless-steel griddle right now.
- First off, you want to wipe the griddle down, so it is clean. If you have to, use a cloth or paper towel, along with some warm water to remove any kind of coating, residue, or food debris. It’s essential that you do this before you attempt to season the stainless-steel griddle. Keep in mind to not use soap for this, as it may affect the flavor of the food.
- Now, take some high-temperature oil. Shorting, Crisco, or rubbing oil will do fine for this. Take a decent amount of oil, but not too much—just enough to evenly coat the cooking surface, and disperse it onto the griddle using some kind of cloth or towel.
- Now heat the griddle up to around 350-400 degrees. Let it sit at that heat for a few minutes. Next, turn the griddle off, let it cool down a bit, and if there is too much oil present, wipe it down with some paper towel or a cloth.
As you can see, seasoning a stainless-steel griddle is not all that hard, but it is something you want to do when you first buy one. You should also do it on a fairly regular basis to maintain it.
What Happens if You Don’t Season Your Stainless-Steel Griddle?
As you might have figured out, it’s necessary to maintain and season your stainless-steel griddle on a regular basis. If you fail to do this, you are going to run into some issues.
For one, if you don’t season it regularly, food will start to stick to it, and pretty badly too. This then means that the food you are attempting to cook will get ruined, plus it makes cleanup time a real pain in the neck too.
The other thing that is going to happen if you don’t season your griddle regularly is that it will rust, which makes it both nasty to cook on and potentially dangerous too.
Regular Griddle Maintenance
Now that you know how to season your stainless-steel griddle and why you should do it, let’s go over some other important tips and related points.
- Cleaning – One thing you want to do is to clean your stainless-steel griddle on a regular basis, more or less, every time after you use it. One important thing to do is to always empty the grease container. Moreover, use a grill scraper every time after cooking to remove all old food debris. It’s always easier to remove stuck-on food when it’s fresh rather than waiting for it to harden. Always make sure to rub in the direction of the grain to prevent damage.
- Seasoning – You want to season your griddle about once per week, depending on how often you use it. Beware folks, skipping seasoning is not only bad for the taste of your food, but also for the quality of the cooking surface!
When all is said and done, seasoning a stainless-steel griddle is not very hard and doesn’t take too long either. However, it is necessary to do it on a regular basis.
If you fail to regularly clean, maintain, and season a stainless-steel griddle, you will run into problems. It will get rusty, food will stick, and it’s just a huge pain in the neck in general!