I know some people expect their pit to be messy – comp cooks, people who do a lot of cooking for groups, caterers. But lets face it – most of us are backyard cooks, and when company comes over to admire the pit – you want it sparkly! Keeping an active pit clean can be a challenge. Over the last 2 years I have had a lot of success keeping mine clean, and I’d like to share some of my successes.
Bar Keepers Friend
OK, I showed-up late to the party on this one. After having my MAK 2.0 conversion to the stainless steel body, I started to see this dark stain develop on the right front (and rear) of the body. This was more a scorch mark than a stain, as every cleaner I tried failed to make a dent in it. MAK Daddy suggested Bar Keepers Friend, and I finally picked some up. Put it on while the pit was cold, and it removed 85% of the stain right away (with a little elbow grease). I’ll do it again while the pit is warm, and expect it will completely remove the stain. This is a must-have for stainless pits. Makes easy work of smoke stains!
This is my go-to everyday cleaner for quick cleans on my MAK. Before and after each and every cook, I’ll do a quick spray-and-wipe. Cuts most grease easily, wipes clean, and has a fresh scent.
OK, this seems like a no-brainer, but I’m not talking about your standard brush/scraper, which you should already have. i’m talking about the small, two-pronged brush you can get for a couple bucks at Home Depot. I find these really helpful in getting stuck-on debris off my GrillGrates, from between my MAK Searing Grates, and from the outer channel of my drip pan. I’ll sometimes spray a little Simple Green on it, and rub it on my pit probe a couple times to remove any stuck-on stuff. A must-have!
Grates and Pans
I do a lot of high-temp grilling, but both with grilling and low-n-slow, you tend to get cooked-on food, grease, and sauce on the grates and drip pans. I have a great cure for that.
When I bought my MAK, I kept my 4-burner gasser. I crank-up the gasser to max on all burners, and put my grates and pans in and 15-20 minutes on high and voila! Clean and grease free!