Grill pans are expensive. That’s why you must take good care to keep them in top condition for a long time. So, can you put grill pans in the dishwasher?
Whether you can put grill pans in the dishwasher or not depends on the material used to construct the pan and the brand specifications. You can’t wash most cast iron and non-stick grill pans in the dishwasher. However, most aluminum, ceramic, and stainless-steel grill pans can go in a dishwasher.
Having said that, let’s take a closer look at this.
Why Is It Difficult To Clean A Grill Pan?
Grill pans are different from regular pans because their base has raised ridges.
When you place food in this pan, the ridges raise it off the base of the pan.
These ridges will also create sear marks on the food that resemble the char marks created by outdoor grills.
Now, these ridges will also allow fat and oils to drain away from the food and collect in the spaces between them.
Thus, they let the food cook in its oil and juices.
The result is a moist, tender dish with char marks where the food touches the ridges.
The unique problem with cleaning a grill pan is that the fat and oils that drain into the base tend to burn.
The burnt bits will stick and not come off easily.
It’s not easy to remove these trapped and charred bits of oil and fat.
You may be able to get most of it out by soaking the pan in soapy water.
However, you may also have to scrub it to get the stubborn bits out.
So, wouldn’t it be easy to throw these pans in the dishwasher and let it do the hard work?
However, you can’t do this for all grill pans.
Cast iron pans are sensitive to moisture.
They also need careful handling since the layer of seasoning will be stripped off with strong scrubbing.
Similarly, the Teflon coating of non-stick pans is not built to withstand high heat.
The hot water in a dishwasher may damage the pan.
Hence, you should always check whether a grill pan is dishwasher safe before putting it in.
How Do You Know If A Grill Pan Is Dishwasher-Safe?
Dishwashers make cleaning up easy. However, not all cookware can go in the dishwasher.
Unless the manufacturer specifies that an item is dishwasher-safe, you risk damaging the cookware by putting it in a dishwasher.
Dishwashers use hot water and rough scrubbing to get the grime and grease out of dishes.
Unless a dish is built to tolerate such rough handling, it can end up becoming damaged.
The dishwasher-safe symbol indicates that you can safely wash the dish in a dishwasher.
This symbol will usually be present on the handle or base of the pan.
You can recognize it by looking for a square box with plates or glasses (or both) inside it.
It will have water droplets or diagonal lines above the plates or glasses representing the water.
The instruction manual with the pan will also mention if a pan is dishwasher-safe.
You can also check for this information on the manufacturer’s website.
Recommended Further Reading:
- Outstanding Grill Pans for Outdoor Grilling
- Can You Put a Grill Pan in the Oven?
- Is Smoke Generated from Grill Pans?
Can You Put Non-Stick Grill Pans In The Dishwasher?
Non-stick grill pans have a Teflon layer.
Teflon is a substance that makes the surface non-sticky and helps to minimize the use of oil during cooking.
It allows food to slide off the surface without creating a mess.
Most non-stick pans are not dishwasher-safe because the non-stick surface is heat-sensitive.
Unless the manufacturer specifies that a non-stick grill pan is dishwasher-safe, never put it in the dishwasher.
The coating can peel off and become ineffective when exposed to high water temperature.
Non-stick grill pans can’t tolerate scrubbing.
The non-stick surface can develop scratches and dents when vigorously scrubbed.
Always look for the dishwasher-safe symbol before putting a non-stick grill pan in the dishwasher.
Even if the non-stick grill pan is dishwasher-safe, it’s advisable to handwash it for extending the pan’s life.
Can You Put Aluminum Grill Pans In The Dishwasher?
Aluminum grill pans are easier to clean than cast iron and stainless-steel pans.
However, they are not always dishwasher-safe.
The metal may corrode and lose its shine when put through a dishwasher.
Exposure to harsh detergents and hot water will cause oxidization of the metal.
It will develop pits and dents.
Reaction with certain dishwashing detergents can also cause white spots to appear on the surface of the grill pan.
Now, some brands manufacture dishwasher-safe aluminum pans. You can wash these pans in the dishwasher.
However, they may lose their original color and become dull with continuous dishwashing.
It’s better to wash them by hand to retain the original color and luster.
Related Further Reading:
- Cooking with Pans on a Grill
- Are Grill Pans Worth It? [Do They Really Work?]
- Can Griddle Be Used For Grilling? [How To Grill On A Griddle?]
Can You Put Cast Iron Grill Pans In The Dishwasher?
The properties of cast iron make it an excellent choice for constructing grill pans.
The metal heats uniformly, retains warmth, and withstands high temperatures.
It’s also durable and convenient to use.
The best thing about cast iron pans is that they develop a natural layer of seasoning with continuous use.
This seasoning makes it behave like a non-stick pan.
It doesn’t need much oil, and the ingredients slide off the surface easily.
Cast iron pans should never go in a dishwasher. This metal is significantly damaged by exposure to moisture.
Putting it through a dishwasher would make it prone to rusting and weaken the metal.
Washing cast iron pans in the dishwasher will also strip them of their valuable seasoning.
Hence, it’s always advisable to wash cast iron grill pans by hand.
Even while handwashing, you should be careful not to damage the non-stick layer.
Scrubbing with rough cleaning agents or harsh dishwashing detergents can strip the non-stick layer off.
So, use mild cleaning agents and gentle scrubbing to dislodge burnt food.
Additionally, you should dry these pans well before putting them away.
Any exposure to moisture will cause rusting that affects the strength and integrity of the metal.
Can You Put Ceramic Grill Pans In The Dishwasher?
Ceramic-coated grill pans look good. They are convenient to use and have a smooth surface.
Most ceramic coated pans are dishwasher-safe.
Nevertheless, it’s always better to check for the dishwasher-safe symbol before placing these pans in a dishwasher.
Now, even if a ceramic pan can go in the dishwasher, handwashing is recommended.
Handwashing ceramic pans with mild cleaning agents will extend their life and keep them in good shape for longer.
Interesting Further Reading:
- No More Smoke from Pans: Solutions
- What Is A Double Boiler Used For? (How To DIY A Double Boiler?)
- How to Determine if a Pan is Coated with Teflon?
Can You Wash Stainless Steel Grill Pans In The Dishwasher?
Stainless steel is suitable for high-temperature cooking. This metal doesn’t warp when exposed to high heat.
It also distributes heat evenly and ensures thorough cooking of ingredients.
Some stainless-steel grill pans are dishwasher-safe.
To check if your pan belongs to this category, look for the dishwasher-safe symbol on its handle or base.
It’s not recommended to wash your stainless-steel pan in the dishwasher if the sign is missing.
You may end up damaging your grill pan.