Experts share their verdict on BBQ cleaning hacks – from beer to using an onion

BBQ season is here, and there are some unconventional methods out there to leave yours sparkling

barbecue cleaning hack
(Image credit: Getty / Michal Kin / EyeEm)

The sales of BBQs have soared recently as we prepare for sunny gatherings in the garden. If your best BBQ is a little on the grimy side after many months in the garden shed, fear not. There are various tricks out there, from pouring beer on the grill to using an onion, so we asked the experts for their verdict.

With the best methods, your grill will be as good as new. Soon we can enjoy to delicious burgers, hot dogs, and grilled vegetables knowing the grill's in top condition.

barbecue cleaning hack

(Image credit: Getty / 10,000 Hours)

Some claim that beer will help clean the BBQ, so we asked Baqir Khan, owner of Proactive Cleanersif it works. 'Beer can be used to clean a BBQ because the alcohol breaks down grease and burnt-on food. Soak a coarse brush or pad in the beer and scrub the grill after use,' Baqir says.

If you don't want to waste any lager on the BBQ, Baqir suggests using traditional cleaners, or natural cleaners like white vinegar. These also break down grease and dirt effectively. Whatever you use, there's probably going to be a fair bit of scrubbing involved. There is, however, the risk of a sticky surface left behind, which isn't ideal.

As for when we should be cleaning the BBQ, Baqir says 'the best time to clean would be pretty much straight after it's been used and, in the case of charcoal grills, when the coals are no longer smoking. This ensures food and other debris has less time to char and harden on and should involve less scrubbing,' he explains.

barbecue cleaning hack

(Image credit: Getty / Elda Carin)

According to professional chef Calum Richardson, the onion cleaning hack is the way to go. 'When the grill has started to heat up, attach half an onion to a fork and rub over the hot bars,' he says.

'The water in the onion steam cleans the grill plate/bars and removes any impurities. Onions have natural antibacterial properties and if you're cooking with charcoal, you can throw the used onion right into the coals when you're finished to add flavor to whatever you're grilling,' Calum adds.

Alternatively, you can simply use dish soap. 'Grab a bucket of water and add Delphis Eco Washing-Up Liquid, specially formulated to remove dirt and grime,' Calum suggests. 'Wipe down the BBQ with cloth or sponge, then rinse with clean water and allow to dry.'

barbecue cleaning hack

(Image credit: Getty / Westend61)

Read: How to BBQ chicken - for perfect results every time

There are various methods for how to clean a BBQ, from natural products to a raw onion – whether it's your best gas BBQ or a small portable number. Just make sure it's free of dirt before you begin.

Millie Hurst
News Writer

Millie Hurst has worked in digital journalism for five years, having previously worked as a Senior SEO Editor at News UK both in London and New York. She joined the Future team in early 2021, working across several brands, including Gardeningetc. Now, she is Senior Content Editor at Ideal Home, taking care of evergreen articles aimed at inspiring people to make the most of their homes and outdoor spaces.