Best Grill Mats of 2018 & Buying Guide

Best Grill Mats of 2018 & Buying Guide

If you’re one of the many people who love the flavor of grilled meat, veggies, and seafood, then you’re probably going to, at some point, want to consider getting a grill mat. A grill mat is a miracle for folk who love their food grilled – they can make your grilling experience much better and help you make amazing quality grilled food right in your home.

Today we’re going to be reviewing a few selected grill mats and decide which one is ultimately the best grill mat you can buy for all-purpose, delicious grilling.

Top 5 Best Grill Mats

IMAGE

GRILL TRIP RANKING

PRODUCT

GRILL TRIP
SCORE

CHECK PRICE

#1

Chef Caron Nonstick BBQ mats

99/100

#2

Twisted Chef Grill Mat

98/100

#3

The BEST BBQ Grill Mat

97/100

#4

Lee’s BBQ Grill Mat

95/100

#5

Grill Kings BBQ Mat

93/100

What’s a grill mat?

Grill mats are truly an amazing invention for those who love grilled food – a lot of people haven’t heard of grill mats, but many have claimed that once they were first introduced to the grill mat, they can’t imagine how they lived without it!

Grill mats all look quite similar – they’re bendy or flexible, black rectangles that don’t look overly impressive on their own. Every grill mat, despite how similar they look, contains its own unique set of features and qualities.

Though each mat has its own benefits, there are a lot of things grill mats share with each other.

  1. Grill mats are generally, if not always, made out of fiberglass cloth and polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE).
  2. Dude can you do me a SOLID. I haven’t used in a day and a half, I’m super sick. I have $15 on my credit card u can spend it on whatever u want if you can even give me a half p
  3. In the factory, the two materials are covered with a special adhesive that binds them together to create the mat.
  4. A bunch of layers of PTFE are added on top of each other to complete the process

Those are what they have in common, but there are many variables about these shared traits. These are where the differences in grilling mats become obvious, and can include:

  1. The amount of PTFE that’s used in the process of making the mat
  2. The size of the mat – they can be tiny for easy portability or huge for a more permanent position in your kitchen
  3. The thickness of the mat can differ, giving you different distributions of temperatures
  4. Since the size and thickness vary, the weight of the mat can vary too

Why do different mats have different amounts of PTFE?

PTFE is the most important variable component of a grill mat.

  1. PTFE is the most expensive part of the manufacturing process, so higher grade mats from reputed brands will use more but they’ll also be much more expensive
  2. A mat made with more PTFE is a lot thicker and thus a lot more durable than thin mats. You’ll be able to use them for much longer without them breaking.
  3. Adding more PTFE also gives the mat less friction. Any chef will know that having a cooking utensil with minimal friction is very important.

So why would I want a grill mat?

There’s a lot of reasons that grill mats are a great investment for your kitchen. Cooking on a grill or a barbecue is great, but let’s be honest – it’s not always perfect. They can be messy, sometimes they can be dangerous, and sometimes they can be tricky to balance many food items on at the same time.

Grill mats can help with all of these problems, and then some!

 

  • a)  Grill mats are clean. Many people who have worked in commercial kitchens know the dreadful task of having to scrub the grill clean. Grill mats eliminate this task, as well as make some other cooking procedures much cleaner

 

      1. Grill mats can be cut and shaped to fit in your baking pans to catch any grease.
      2. You can also just stick them at the bottom of your oven to catch drippings, since they’re often machine washable.
      3. Grill mats are much easier to wipe down than a grill itself.

 

  • b)  They keep cooking safely. If you end up going camping where you’re using a shared grill, you might be apprehensive about what sort of germs or other types of old food are left on the grill. You can bring your own grill mat to prevent this, resting easy knowing that it’s as clean as you made it.
  • c)  Versatility. There are quite a few things you can’t cook on a grated grill, like eggs, pancakes and the like. With a grill mat you can cover up the space between the grates and cook whatever you want!
  • d)  They keep you healthy. With a grill mat, you’ll end up needing to use less oil or grease to cook your foods since the surfaces are nonstick and have very little friction. This means you won’t have to use a ton of oil to stop your eggs from sticking!
  • e)  They can be used all over the kitchen. You can reshape and resize your grill mat to make it fit into different cooking surfaces.

 

These are all problems that a lot of people have in the kitchen, and often times struggle to fix. You could end up spending hundreds of dollars on different equipment – a nonstick pan for your eggs, a dishwasher-safe regular pan, stove-top protectors, cookie covers, different baking sheets with their own nonstick coating – but a grill mat could solve all of these problems for you.

IMAGE

GRILL TRIP RANKING

PRODUCT

GRILL TRIP
SCORE

CHECK PRICE

#1

Chef Caron Nonstick BBQ mats

99/100

#2

Twisted Chef Grill Mat

98/100

#3

The BEST BBQ Grill Mat

97/100

#4

Lee’s BBQ Grill Mat

95/100

#5

Grill Kings BBQ Mat

93/100

What precautionary measures should I take with my grill mat?

Of course, with something as important as your grill mat, you’re going to want to make sure that you take care of the thing properly. Like anything, grill mats require proper maintenance and the proper handling techniques.

Don’t use your grill mat over a direct flame or you’ll risk damaging the PTFE coating and making the grill unusable. You can still cook with them over a fire pit, but make sure the flames aren’t actually touching your mat.

Make sure you don’t stack mats on top of each other. This might seem like an appealing idea for someone hoping to cook slowly, but this can also damage the mats.

Like any nonstick utensil you have in your kitchen, don’t use metal utensils or they can scratch the coating, eventually making the mat unusable.

What sort of grill mat should I get?

There are A few things to consider when purchasing your grill mat that can make or break the deal. They may all share similar manufacturing processes, but adjusting any part of that process has a huge effect on the end result.

  • Thickness

The thickness of your mat is probably the largest factor in terms of how it will perform. The thickness depends on the amount of PTFE that’s been added to the mat during processing.

Smoke-grill mats are extremely thin, which isn’t good – they’ll be weak and won’t last long. They’ll also heat up incredibly fast which could lead to you burning your food.

Adversely, having a mat that’s too thick can lead to uneven heat distribution, since the heat, rising upwards, will escape before the entire mat is heated up evenly. The recommended thickness for everyday grilling is 0.25mm.

  • Size

The size of your mat is pretty important, and it’s generally suggested that a bigger mat is better. If you get one that’s too small, there’s nothing you can do about it – however, having a big mat means you can cut it into smaller mats and use them for different things.

A bigger mat isn’t going to have as significant of a price increase as a thicker mat, and size doesn’t play as much of a role in heat distribution as long as your heat source can support the whole mat.

So, it’s up to you to decide what sort of mat you want – just remember, don’t get one that’s much thicker than a quarter millimeter, and don’t get one so small that you’ll regret it.

The 5 Best Grill Mats You can Buy

Now we can look in detail at some of the most popular and reliable grill mats you can buy today.


1. Twisted Chef Grill Mat

The Twisted Chef may not be the most famous brand name in the world, but they certainly deliver good products. For someone hoping to do everyday grilling with their mat, this is one of the best choices for them.

They’re just over 15 inches wide – about the same size as a laptop – and can be used side-by-side on bigger grills.

Pros:

  1. Twisted Chef grill mats come in packages of three mats, despite being durable enough that you’ll probably only ever need one
  2. They also come with a lifetime guarantee
  3. They’re approved by the FDA for use on all types of grills
  4. They’re dishwasher-safe and easy to clean
  5. Made with a reliable nonstick coating

Cons:

  1. Using standard grilling utensils will damage the mat so you might need to buy new ones
  2. The edges of this mat tend to fray
  3. Cooking greasy items, like burgers, can result in the grease staying on the mat and ultimately frying your food


2. Grill Kings BBQ Mat

The Grill Kings mat is exactly what it sounds like – a mat for the kings of grilling. They’re a bit more expensive than some other models but they come with unbeatable durability.

Pros:

  1. Extremely durable for a cooking mat
  2. Thin enough that you can still see the grill marks on your food, which is appealing to many cooks
  3. Cleanup can be as simple as rinsing with water and towel-drying
  4. This mat is lightweight and very flexible
  5. Comes with a money-back guarantee if you’re not satisfied
  6. This is a large mat that can be resized for other purposes

Cons:

  1. This mat is a bit more expensive than what you’ll pay for most other ones
  2. Doesn’t’ come with very specific instructions


3. The BEST BBQ Grill Mat

This mat is on the smaller side of the ones we’re reviewing, coming in at 13.5 inches across. This doesn’t mean that the mat is any less excellent than the others, though. The BEST BBQ comes with a set of two grill mats, and the price for both is unbeatable.

Pros:

  1. Comes with a 5-year warranty
  2. A package deal that includes two grill mats
  3. They’re dishwasher safe and otherwise easy to clean
  4. Small and very portable due to their light weight and size
  5. FDA approved, meeting all culinary standards
  6. Extremely cheap for a grill mat
  7. Great for cooking vegetables

Cons:

  1. Can be difficult for the grease to drain, leading to burning or over-frying
  2. Not as durable or long-lasting as other grill mats that are more expensive
  3. While amazing for cooking vegetables, it can be difficult to evenly cook meat


4. Chef Caron Nonstick BBQ mats

This product comes with a set of two mats, that are both thicker and larger than the average model. The thickness of the mat prevents burning, breaking, and fraying, making it ideal for people who are hoping to have one mat last them for a long time. Of course, with these benefits, the price is a bit higher than other varieties – but the value is still there.

Pros:

  1. An ideally thick mat at 0.25mm, this one is very durable and the perfect thickness for evenly heating your food
  2. They come with a lifetime guarantee so even if it does break, you can replace it
  3. They’re very slick, meaning your food won’t burn unless you forget about it
  4. They have been tested to be PFOA-free. PFOA is a chemical that’s emitted sometimes when nonstick pans are used at high temperatures.
  5. Great for cooking meat, vegetables, seafood, and anything else

Cons:

  1. A bit more expensive than other grill mats
  2. They will be a bit less easy to transport due to their size and weight


5. Lee’s BBQ Grill Mat

These mats are extra durable, made with teflon, and are guaranteed to last you a long time. They’re great for everyday grilling – anything from steaks to vegetables goes well on this mat. It sells at a fair price, as well.

Pros:

  1. Good price for all the value
  2. A moderate sized mat that’s not too big or small
  3. Thick enough to evenly distribute heat without burning your food
  4. Can be used on all grills
  5. FDA approved

Cons:

  1. Teflon can emit harmful chemicals when used at high temperatures
  2. Grease can sometimes pool on the mat if not drained.


The Winner

The best grill mat that we’ve found is the Chef Caron grill mat. It’s got an ideal thickness so you don’t have to worry about burning your food, it’s large and can be resized into smaller mats, and also comes with a great guarantee.

You can’t really ask for much more than what the Chef Caron grill mat offers, and the price is great for what you’re getting. If you’re an everyday griller who looks cooking anything from eggs to eggplants, this is for you.

On top of matching the ideal statistics for size and weight, this mat is approved by the FDA for not having to emit harmful chemicals.

There are a lot of grill mats out there, but for the average person, this is one of the best ones you can purchase.