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The Best Grill Pan

Last updated on March 15, 2024

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Don't Waste Your Money is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to. Learn more.

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Our Picks For The Top Grill Pans

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Product Overview
Key Takeaway
 Best Overall

Lodge Pro-Grid Cast Iron Reversible Grill/Griddle

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Pro-Grid Cast Iron Reversible Grill/Griddle

With this griddle, you can use one side to grill your favorite meats and the other side to griddle up a stack of pancakes. The seasoned cast iron material and easy grip handles are two additional reasons this model is a top choice among competitors. Of course, the large cooktop that spans two burners isn't bad either. During our testing, we liked t...

Overall Take

Covers Two BurnersThis griddle is an excellent choice when cooking for a family or small group of people, as it has a large surface that covers two burners.

 Best Basic

Weber Small Aluminum Drip Pans


Small Aluminum Drip Pans

If you're looking for a multipurpose pan that is also disposable, these drip pans from Weber are your best bet. The pans can be used to line your grill's catch pan, carry your hamburgers and hot dogs from the house to the grill or cook a casserole in the oven. You'll get 10 pans with each set, which reduces the final cost of each pan for big saving...

Overall Take

Easy Clean UpThere's no need to take time away from your guests to clean up when you use the these aluminum drip pans, as they are disposable.

 Great for Steaks

Cuisinart Chef’s Classic 12-Inch Round Grill Pan


Chef's Classic 12-Inch Round Grill Pan

This round grill pan from Cuisinart features a long handle that stays cool while you cook. Foods are easy to move around the pan, thanks to the quantanium nonstick interior. There's even a tapered rim to collect drippings. It is important to note that this grill pan isn't compatible with induction cooktops.

Overall Take

Handle Stays CoolA contoured rim that collects drippings and a handle that stays cool while cooking make the this round grill pan a great buy.

 Best Grill Basket

Weber Deluxe Grilling Basket


Deluxe Grilling Basket

This handy grilling basket from Weber is an easy way to grill veggies and other small foods, without having to worry about them falling down between your grill grates. It's made from sturdy stainless steel and fits all Weber grills.

Overall Take

For VegetablesCook vegetable with ease on your grill with help from this useful stainless steel basket.

Buying Guide

Grill pans are an excellent cooking tool that will help you get the sear you’re looking for, even if you need to prepare a meal indoors. In fact, our resident culinary expert and the co-chair of the International Association of Culinary Professionals Julie Chernoff says: “Grill pans are just the thing when it’s too cold or rainy to head out to your outdoor grill, or if you just have a small amount to grill.”

Simplemost Media

Did you know that one of the first known meals cooked barbecue-style was mammoth ribs? It’s true! Archaeologists actually uncovered an old cooking pit back in 2009. While it’s safe to say you won’t be grilling mammoth for your family, you’ll most likely be preparing some kind of meat as the main course for your meal.

When you begin your search for the best grill pan, take a look at the materials used for construction.

“I prefer cast iron grill pans, as they retain heat better than stainless steel, and although heavier than stainless, are far better at mimicking the classic grill grates in terms of grill marks on your meats and veggies,” says Chernoff.

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The Lodge Pro-Grid Cast Iron Reversible Grill/Griddle is an excellent choice, as it features a grill on one side and a griddle on the other. It’s also pre-seasoned and able to distribute heat evenly across the pan.

Another option is a grill pan made using a heavy gauge aluminum, like the Calphalon Aluminum Nonstick Square Grill Pan. When you go this route, you’ll need to make sure the pan has a nonstick coating. The Calphalon has not one, but three layers of nonstick coating. You won’t have any trouble with food sticking to the pan with this model.

Next, you’ll want to consider the pan’s shape.

“As far as shape, I recommend the square or rectangular grill pan, as they have more surface area than a round or oval pan,” says Chernoff.

Simplemost Media

She goes on to point out that “the larger rectangular pans will cover two burners.” That makes them an excellent choice when cooking for a big family.

According to Chernoff, “the smaller, one-burner grill pans will have a handle, and the longer, the better. Those pans get hot and stay hot! This will, of course, make the pan heavier, so you will need a helper handle on the opposite side of the pan from the long handle, to make it easier to maneuver.” In addition to a long handle, Chernoff recommends choosing a pan with “nice deep ridges that will keep your food out of the grease that drips off during cooking.” The Cuisinart Chef’s Classic 12-Inch Round Grill Pan has a tapered drip-free rim that makes it a cinch to collect and pour out drippings.

Of course, there are also grill pans out there that are meant to be used just once. The disposable Weber Small Aluminum Drip Pans, for example, can be used with select grills to catch drippings, or used to prepare veggies or casseroles for a family picnic.

Our Expert Consultant

Julie Chernoff
Culinary Expert

Julie Chernoff is a long-time member of Les Dames d’Escoffier (past president of the Chicago Chapter, and current co-chair of the LDEI Legacy Awards Committee), the Association of Food Journalists (AFJ) and the International Association of Culinary Professionals.

Chernoff is the dining editor of Better, a lifestyle website and print magazine. Her journalism started in the test kitchens of Weight Watchers Magazine. She holds a BA in English from Yale University and is a graduate of the California Culinary Academy. She has spent the last few decades styling, photographing, teaching, developing recipes, editing, thinking and writing about food.

What to Look For

  • Review any guarantees or warranties offered by the company. You may be pleasantly surprised to discover that some models actually come with a lifetime warranty.
  • Make sure the grill pan you’re interested in fits your needs. Can it be used indoors on an oven, a grill or a stove? Can it be used outdoors on a grill or over a campfire?
  • Check to see if the grill pan is dishwasher safe. Some models are and some aren’t. Those that must be washed by hand are easier to clean if they have been given time to soak in a dishpan of hot soapy water. Should you have any tough stuck-on foods to contend with, use baking soda and a non-abrasive sponge to remove them.
  • Look to see whether your grill pan can be used with an induction cooktop. Some models aren’t compatible with induction cooking.
  • Certain grill pans are not safe for use with metal utensils, as they may pull up the nonstick surface or causes scratches. It’s best to stick with wooden or plastic utensils.
  • Check to make sure the product is PFOE free. You don’t want to chance harmful chemicals leaking into your grilled meals and veggies.
  • Always review the maximum temperature the pan can be exposed to, as higher heats may cause the grill pans to crack. Many will list that they are oven safe up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit on their product packaging.
  • Consider grill pans that come with a weighted press. This will allow you to cook bacon evenly or make a delicious panini sandwich.
  • When it comes to price, you must take into consideration the material used to construct the pan, as well as the pan’s size. The Lodge Pro-Grid Cast Iron Reversible Grill/Griddle is priced higher than the Cuisinart Chef’s Classic 12-Inch Round Grill Pan and the Calphalon Aluminum Nonstick Square Grill Pan, as they are made out of aluminum and it is made out of a more durable cast iron. The Lodge grill pan also spans the length of two burners. On the lower end of the price range, you have the Weber Small Aluminum Drip Pans, which are made for one-time use only.

More to Explore

Even though the Fourth of July is the most popular day of the year for grilling delicious foods, May is actually the official National Barbecue Month. Perhaps that is because May is when temperatures start to become more conducive to a host of outdoor activities, including dining out in the fresh air.

If you appreciate the art of grilling, you may enjoy learning a few interesting facts about this popular method of cooking.

  • 75% of the adults in America own either a grill or a smoker.
  • Of the individuals who own a grill, 63% of them actually use their grills monthly.
  • While the majority of adults list hamburgers and steaks as their favorite grilled food, the majority of children voiced their preference for hot dogs.
  • The top three reasons people barbecue are for the improved flavor, personal enjoyment and entertainment of friends and family.
  • A man named Johnny Fugitt actually ate at 365 barbecue joints over the course of a year just to determine which ones had the best grilled food.
  • The most commonly purchased grill tool is a set of tongs. The least commonly purchased grill tool is a rib rack.
  • There are actually two cities that claim to be the barbecue capital of America. They are Memphis and Kansas City. It’s actually Oklahoma that has the most barbecue restaurants though, with Georgia following close behind.

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