Outdoor Griddles: Worth the Hype or Just a Trend? Discover the Truth

If you're an avid griller or love cooking outdoors, chances are that you've heard about outdoor griddles. But perhaps you're wondering: is it worth investing in one?

Cooking hamburgers on a outdoor griddle

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Hey there! If you’re an avid griller or love cooking outdoors, chances are that you’ve heard about outdoor griddles. But perhaps you’re wondering: is it worth investing in one? Will it truly enhance your outdoor cooking experience and produce delicious meals?

Well, the answer may not be so straightforward. There are several factors to consider before deciding whether or not an outdoor griddle is right for you. That’s why we’ve put together this guide to help you weigh the pros and cons of owning an outdoor griddle.

So sit back, relax, and let’s dive into everything you need to know about these versatile appliances!

Cooking hamburgers on a outdoor griddle

What is an outdoor griddle?

An outdoor griddle is a cooking device that typically sits on legs or a stand outside on your patio or backyard. It consists of a flat surface made from materials such as cast iron, stainless steel, or aluminum, and it’s heated by either propane gas or charcoal.

Griddles can come in various sizes to accommodate different cooking needs. Some models are small enough to be portable for camping trips, while others are large enough to cook up entire meals for big families or groups of friends.

One significant advantage of an outdoor griddle over other outdoor cooking methods is its smooth and even cooking surface. This makes it perfect for preparing foods like pancakes, eggs, burgers, hotdogs, bacon and even stir fry dishes!

Overall, an outdoor griddle offers versatility in your outdoor cooking setup and is worth considering if you love hosting gatherings at your home with family and friends. The next section will explore the pros and cons of owning one in more detail.

Pros of an outdoor griddle

Outdoor griddles have been gaining popularity among cooking enthusiasts and for good reason. Here are some of the pros you can expect when using an outdoor griddle:

  1. Versatility: An outdoor griddle is a versatile piece of equipment that can be used to cook a wide range of foods from pancakes to hamburgers, stir-fry vegetables to grilled cheese sandwiches.
  2. Even Cooking: Grills often have hot spots or areas where the heat isn’t distributed evenly; an outdoor griddle, however, provides even heating throughout its surface ensuring consistent cooking results every time.
  3. Easy to Clean: Unlike traditional grills which require extensive cleaning after every use, an outdoor griddle is relatively easy to clean with just water and a mild detergent due to its flat surface.
  4. Capacity to Cook for Large Groups: Outdoor griddles generally offer larger cooking surfaces than traditional BBQs which makes it easier and faster for large groups or families.

In addition, because of their broad surface area, they’re also useful in keeping food warm until ready to serve while still maintaining optimal taste and texture.

Overall an outdoor griddle presents many advantages over a standard grill while still producing great tasting food making it worth considering if you enjoy entertaining outdoors or love barbecuing regularly!

1. Versatility

One of the biggest advantages of having an outdoor griddle is its versatility. With a griddle, you can cook everything from pancakes to burgers and even vegetables. The flat surface of the griddle makes it easy to cook a variety of food items at once without worrying about them falling through gaps in the grill.

Additionally, because a griddle can get very hot, it’s perfect for searing meats or creating crispy crusts on seafood. You can also use the edge of the cooking surface as a warming area while you finish cooking other items.

Not only is an outdoor griddle versatile in terms of what you can cook on it, but it’s also great for different types of meals. For example, if you’re making breakfast for your family or friends, you could easily whip up pancakes, eggs, bacon and sausage all at once on your outdoor griddle.

Likewise, if you’re hosting a gathering with lots of people over for dinner then an outdoor griddle gives everyone plenty of space to make their own dishes just how they like them.

In summary – An outdoor Griddle provides versatility that other cooking methods just cannot match thanks to its ability to cook various types and quantities of food and ease-of-use when handling large amounts efficiently without sacrificing taste or quality!

2. Even Cooking

Another major benefit of using an outdoor griddle is the even cooking it provides. Unlike traditional grills that can leave some parts undercooked or burnt, an outdoor griddle has a flat surface which ensures even heating throughout the entire cooking area.

This means that whatever you’re cooking, whether pancakes or burgers, will cook evenly and produce consistent results.

The reason why an outdoor griddle offers this advantage is because of how it distributes heat. With traditional open-flame grills, heat rises and escapes quickly through vents in the hood.

This uneven distribution leaves food cooked inconsistently, with parts hotter than others, depending on their proximity to the flame.

An outdoor griddle radiates heat from its entire surface, allowing for more uniform heating and cooking at all points on the surface. You will not have to worry about any part of your dish being overcooked while another portion remains uncooked due to uneven heating.

Overall, if you are looking for a tool to achieve perfectly-cooked food every time without worrying about hot spots or flames drying out certain portions of your meal then choosing an outdoor grill is definitely worth investing in!

3. Easy to Clean

One of the standout advantages of an outdoor griddle is how easy it is to clean. Unlike traditional BBQ grills, which require a fair amount of elbow grease and cleaning supplies to scrub down after each use, an outdoor griddle can typically be cleaned with just a bit of warm water and soap.

To clean your outdoor griddle, start by scraping off any excess food debris with a metal spatula or scraper (be sure not to use anything too abrasive that could damage the cooking surface).

Then wipe down the surface with a damp cloth or paper towel, adding soap if necessary. Once you’ve cleaned the entire surface, rinse it off with warm water and let it air dry.

Many outdoor griddles also come with removable cooking plates or drip trays, making cleaning even easier.

Simply take them out and wash them like you would any other dish. And because most outdoor griddles are made from stainless steel or another non-porous material, they’re resistant to rust and corrosion over time.

Overall, if you value convenience in your cooking equipment (and who doesn’t?), an outdoor griddle is definitely worth considering for its ease of use and simple cleaning process.

4. Capacity to Cook for Large Groups

One of the best things about an outdoor griddle is that it has the capacity to cook for large groups. This makes it perfect for hosting barbecues, family gatherings, or even camping trips. With a large cooking surface area, you can make multiple dishes at once without having to constantly switch between them.

For example, you can cook up a batch of pancakes while also sautéing some vegetables or searing a steak. This means everyone can eat together without having to wait for each dish to be done one by one.

Additionally, an outdoor griddle makes food prep easier and more efficient because there’s no need to use separate pots and pans. You can simply chop up all your ingredients and toss them on the griddle together.

Overall, if you love hosting large groups of people or have a big family with hearty appetites, investing in an outdoor griddle may be worth it for its ability to quickly cook up enough food for everyone to enjoy at once!

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Cons of an outdoor griddle

While there are many benefits to owning an outdoor griddle, it’s important to also consider the potential drawbacks before making a purchase. Here are some of the cons to keep in mind :

  1. Limited Cooking Methods – While outdoor griddles can cook a variety of foods, they may not be able to prepare everything you want. For example, if you enjoy smoking meats or cooking with charcoal, an outdoor griddle may not be the right choice for you.
  2. Requires Additional Equipment – In addition to the griddle itself, you may need additional equipment such as propane tanks and spatulas to get the most out of your outdoor cooking experience. This can add to the overall cost and storage requirements.
  3. Higher Cost – Outdoor griddles tend to be more expensive than other types of outdoor cooking appliances such as gas or charcoal grills. This can make them less accessible for some people who are looking for an affordable option.

It’s important to weigh these cons against the pros when deciding whether or not an outdoor griddle is worth it for you and your lifestyle.

If being able to cook a wide variety of foods with even heat distribution is important to you, then investing in an outdoor griddle may still be a good choice despite these potential drawbacks.

In the next section, we’ll look at some key factors that should influence your decision-making process when choosing an outdoor griddle.

1. Limited Cooking Methods

While outdoor griddles are versatile, one of the cons is that they have limited cooking methods.

Unlike a grill, which can be used for direct and indirect heat cooking, an outdoor griddle typically only allows for direct heat cooking. This means that foods like steak and chicken may not get those iconic grill marks or charred flavor.

However, this doesn’t mean you can’t get creative with your outdoor griddle. Many people use their griddles to cook breakfast items like pancakes and bacon or stir-fry dishes. Griddles also work well for cooking vegetables as they won’t fall through the grates like they would on a grill.

Another way to combat the limited cooking methods is to use additional equipment such as a cast iron skillet or Dutch oven on top of the griddle surface. This allows for more diverse cooking options without having to invest in multiple pieces of equipment.

Overall, while an outdoor griddle may not be able to replace all the functions of a grill, it still offers plenty of versatility in terms of what you can cook outdoors.

With some creativity and additional equipment, there are many delicious meals that can be prepared on an outdoor griddle.

2. Requires Additional Equipment

While outdoor griddles offer a lot of benefits, they do come with a few downsides. One of the biggest cons is that they often require additional equipment to use properly.

For example, you’ll need a propane tank to fuel your griddle and ensure it stays hot throughout the cooking process.

Without propane, your food won’t cook evenly or quickly, and you’ll have difficulty achieving the right temperature range for each dish you want to prepare.

In addition to propane tanks, some outdoor griddles may also require additional accessories or tools to make them more useful.

For instance, you might purchase a cover to protect your grill from the elements when it’s not in use or invest in specialized spatulas and utensils designed specifically for use on an outdoor griddle.

Of course, all of these extra costs can add up over time – especially if you’re not prepared for them upfront.

However, many people find that investing in an outdoor griddle is worth the additional expense since it provides so much versatility and convenience when cooking outdoors.

3. Higher Cost

One of the main drawbacks to purchasing an outdoor griddle is the cost. Compared to other outdoor cooking options, such as a traditional grill or smoker, an outdoor griddle can be significantly more expensive .

This is largely due to the size and material of the griddle itself. Outdoor griddles are typically made from high-quality stainless steel or cast iron, which can be more costly than other materials used in outdoor cooking appliances.

In addition to the initial purchase cost, additional expenses may be involved with owning an outdoor griddle. For example, you may need to purchase a propane tank if your griddle runs on propane fuel.

Despite these higher costs, many people find that investing in an outdoor griddle is worth it for the benefits they provide.

It ultimately comes down to personal preference and how much you value things like even cooking and versatility in your outdoor cooking setup.

Factors to Consider When Choosing an Outdoor Griddle

When considering purchasing an outdoor griddle, there are a few factors to keep in mind to ensure that you make the right choice.

  1. Size: The size of your outdoor griddle will depend on your cooking needs and how many people you plan on cooking for. If you have a large family or plan on entertaining guests frequently, opting for a large griddle may be the best option.
  2. Material: Outdoor griddles can be made from various materials including stainless steel, cast iron, and aluminum. Each material has its own set of benefits and drawbacks but durability should always be a top priority when making your selection.
  3. BTU Output: BTUs (British Thermal Units) measure the amount of heat that an outdoor griddle produces per hour. A higher BTU output generally means faster cooking times but can also result in uneven heating if not properly managed.
  4. Price: Outdoor griddles vary in price depending on their size and features offered so it is important to consider your budget when making this investment.

By keeping these factors in mind, you can ensure that you choose an outdoor griddle that meets all of your individual needs while staying within your budget constraints.

Size

When it comes to choosing an outdoor griddle, size is an important factor to consider. You’ll want to choose a size that fits your cooking needs and the space available in your outdoor area. Outdoor griddles come in a range of sizes, from small portable options to larger built-in models.

If you plan on using your outdoor griddle for camping trips or tailgating events, a smaller and more portable option may be ideal for you. These compact models are lightweight and easy to transport, making them perfect for on-the-go cooking.

However, if you plan on using your outdoor griddle regularly at home or hosting large gatherings, a larger model with more cooking space may be necessary. Make sure to measure the available space in your outdoor area before purchasing an outdoor griddle to ensure it will fit comfortably.

It’s important to note that while larger griddles offer more cooking space, they also require more fuel and take longer to heat up than smaller models. Consider the amount of food you’ll be cooking regularly and how quickly you need it cooked when deciding on the size of the griddle.

Overall, when choosing an outdoor griddle size matters – but so does flexibility! Choosing adjustable legs can give yourself some wiggle room depending on where exactly this new appliance will live permanently or temporarily – which means even if it doesn’t have as much square footage as other options out there today – there might still be enough room if needed down-the-line thanks largely due adjustable leg features like these!

Material

When it comes to choosing the right material for your outdoor griddle, there are a few factors to consider. The most common materials used for outdoor griddles are cast iron and stainless steel.

Cast iron is a popular choice because it retains heat well and helps distribute heat evenly across the cooking surface. It’s also known for its durability and ability to withstand high temperatures.

Stainless steel, on the other hand, is more lightweight and easier to clean than cast iron. It’s also resistant to rust and corrosion, making it a good choice for those who live in areas with high humidity or near saltwater.

In terms of maintenance, both materials require some level of care. Cast iron should be seasoned regularly with oil to prevent rusting and maintain its non-stick surface. Stainless steel requires regular cleaning with soap and water to keep it looking new.

Ultimately, the choice between cast iron or stainless steel will depend on your personal preference and cooking needs. Both materials have their pros and cons, so take some time to think about what matters most to you before making a decision.

Transition: Now that we’ve discussed material options for outdoor griddles, let’s move onto another important factor – BTU output.

BTU Output

When choosing an outdoor griddle, one important factor to consider is the BTU output. BTU stands for British Thermal Units and is a measure of heat output. The higher the BTU output, the more heat your griddle can produce.

A high BTU output is important if you want to be able to cook quickly and efficiently. If you plan on cooking for large groups or hosting backyard parties, a griddle with a high BTU output will be able to keep up with demand.

It’s important to note that just because a griddle has a high BTU output doesn’t necessarily mean it will be better than one with a lower output. A lot depends on the size of your griddle and what you plan on using it for.

To give you an idea of what kind of BTUs to look for in an outdoor griddle, here are some general guidelines:

  • For small to medium-sized griddles (up to 24 inches), look for around 25,000 – 30,000 BTUs.
  • For larger-sized griddles (over 24 inches), look for around 40,000 – 60,000+ BTUs.
  • If you plan on cooking items that require very high heat like stir-fry or searing steaks, go for higher-end models that have burners capable of producing over 10k+BTUs each

In summary: When looking at potential outdoor griddles don’t get swayed by just how many symbols there are behind “BTU” number as its not sole determinant in making good grilled food.Do make sure though adequate number burns so all your foods heat uniformly adding sizzle and taste.Serve up deliciously cooked food easier by balancing out this element along price,size,and material factors also considered above!

Price

One of the main factors to consider when choosing an outdoor griddle is price. Outdoor griddles can range in price from a couple hundred dollars to well over a thousand dollars, depending on their size, material, and features.

While it can be tempting to go for the cheapest option available, it’s important to keep in mind that quality often comes at a cost. Cheaper griddles may not last as long or cook as evenly as more expensive options.

That being said, there are still plenty of affordable outdoor griddles on the market that offer great performance and value. It’s all about finding the right balance between price and quality based on your specific needs and budget.

To help you get started with your search, below is a table comparing some popular outdoor griddles at different price points:

GriddlePrice Range
Blackstone 28 inch Outdoor Flat Top Gas Grill Griddle Station$200-$300
Camp Chef Flat Top Grill 600$500-$600
Weber Summit S-660 Built-In Natural Gas Stainless Steel Grill$2,500-$3,000

Keep in mind that this table is just a starting point – there are many other great outdoor griddles out there with varying prices and features. Ultimately, it’s up to you to determine what features are most important for your cooking needs and find an outdoor griddle within your budget that will deliver the performance you need.

Are Outdoor Griddles Really as Versatile as They’re Made Out to Be?

When it comes to exploring outdoor griddles versatility, they truly live up to the hype. These handy cooking tools can handle everything from breakfast to dinner, offering a wide range of cooking options. Whether it’s pancakes, burgers, stir-fry, or even a full breakfast spread, outdoor griddles can do it all.

Conclusion

After considering the pros and cons of outdoor griddles as well as the factors to consider when choosing one, it’s clear that an outdoor griddle can be a valuable addition to any outdoor cooking setup. With its versatility in cooking different types of food evenly, ease of cleaning, and capacity to cook for large groups, it’s easy to see why so many people love using them.

However, it’s important to keep in mind some of the potential downsides such as limited cooking methods and the need for additional equipment. Additionally, cost is always a factor to consider when making any purchase.

Ultimately, whether or not an outdoor griddle is worth it comes down to your individual needs and preferences. If you value versatility and convenience in your outdoor cooking setup and are willing to invest in a high-quality griddle that meets your specific requirements, then an outdoor griddle could definitely be worth considering.

To wrap things up, we hope this article has given you a better understanding of what an outdoor griddle is all about. Whether you’re looking for something new or simply trying to upgrade your existing setup, taking the time to carefully evaluate your options will help ensure that you end up with a grill that truly meets all your needs .