Whether hosting a backyard barbecue or taking your family on a weekend camping trip, you’ve likely considered the benefits of using a griddle top vs. a grill to cook. If you need more information before making a decision, this guide is for you.
The Differences Between Griddles & Grills
Although griddles and grills both serve the same purpose, they do so in different ways. Take a look at the main differences between these two cooking devices.
Griddles consist of a flat, smooth, generally rectangular surface. Some even have a built-in heat source below the surface. These devices come in gas and electric models and are ideal for cooking smaller foods that would fall through the openings between grill grates, including:
- Chopped veggies
- Hash browns
Griddles are a user-friendly cooking option due to their portability, affordability, and indoor-outdoor versatility. They encourage even cooking and can be placed over a grill, campfire, or stovetop burner. Griddles don’t produce flames or smoke, making them a safer alternative than grills.
Grills feature a flat, sometimes multi-tiered surface with metal grates that rest above an open flame. These devices are designed to cook whole vegetables, skewers, and larger pieces of meat—such as chicken breasts, steaks, and sausage links.
Grills can be fueled by propane gas, wood, charcoal, or electricity. Since they produce intense heat, flames, and smoke, they’re built exclusively for outdoor use. Grills can be portable, depending on the size and style. Their trademark feature is the grill marks they leave on food.
What Are the Best Cooking Temperatures for Each Device?
While griddles can cook food thoroughly at about 350°F, grills typically produce a temperature of 400°F or higher. That’s because grills—particularly propane gas, wood, and charcoal fueled models—produce open flames.
Can I Use a Griddle on a Gas Grill?
While you can use a griddle on a gas grill, it requires the use of a griddle accessory. Since griddles cook food at roughly 350°F, they aren’t all equipped to handle the high temperatures produced by grills. If you decide to use a griddle on a gas grill, be sure to use one made to be used on a grill, like our Stainless Steel Griddles.
Griddle vs. Grill: Which Is Better?
There’s no clear-cut answer as to whether a griddle or a grill is better for cooking. It all depends on a few factors:
- What you’re cooking: Griddles are better for smaller foods while grills are better for larger foods.
- Desired flavor: Do you want your food to have a smoky flavor? If not, opt for a griddle.
- Desired presentation: If you want those signature grill marks, a grill is the way to go.
- Budget: How much are you willing to spend on a cooking apparatus? Also, keep in mind that grills generally require more frequent repairs and replacements than griddles.
- Available cooking and cleanup time: How much time can you allocate toward cooking for and cleaning up after a meal? Grills take longer to heat up and require a more rigorous cleaning process.
- Cooking space: Do you have an outdoor space that’s big enough to place a grill?
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