We’re well into the summer, but you know what they say: it’s never too late to pop out that grill and smoke a steak or two. After all, as long as the sun is dangerously close to the earth, nothing can beat a good whole-hearted barbecue. We can already taste those meaty goods simmered in buffalo sauce, oozing with melted fat and cheese.
But is that old run-down grill that you inherited from your great grandfather really going to work? Perhaps not. You’re better off buying a new cooking platform. But what’s really worth the money? A cooking outdoor griddle or a grill? There’s no absolute answer, but we’ve prepared a handy guide that will help you decide for yourself.
So let’s begin!
What’s A Grill?
A grill is an open cooking surface with stainless steel wires that support the food while it is heated from below. Grilling is the most popular method of barbecuing, and should definitely be your first option. Not only does a grill leave a nice smoky texture and taste, but it also marks the food with its signature hatched design.
Grills can definitely be a blast to work with, and many believe that a grill can give the type of results that a griddle cannot even remotely present. But as always, the right choice is always in your hands.
What’s A Griddle?
A griddle is an open cooking surface which is mostly flat and made of steel. The food is typically heated from below. Although not as popular as the grill, this method of cooking has taken the world by storm, and is ten times more convenient in closed areas such as kitchens or restaurants. Griddles can also leave a neat and decent smoky taste, though not as robust and evident as that of a grill. While griddles fail to leave any marks on the surface of the food, they can certainly baffle us by the unique electrical and magnetic taste.
Griddles are great for all types of cooking. And the best part? You can even make pancakes on them!
Griddle vs. Grill:
Again, no one can decide for you better than yourself. But we believe that our handy guide will help you make the better decision. In the end, do what you feel is right. For there’s no better decision than your own.
Below are a few comparisons that will aid in evaluating the two cooking stations:
Texture and Taste:
The food made by one method will differ from food by another. Which is why it is important to understand the different textures and tastes that come with differing cooking appliances.
Grills give a slightly burnt, chary texture that will enhance the flavor of the food and add to the smokiness of the steak. Grills can cook the food faster, and sometimes directly expose it to open flames, which will definitely leave an essence of “cooked in the fires of hell”. This texture is specially offered by the grills that use charcoal briquettes or coal pellets.
Griddles are a little more soft-core on the food, but nonetheless can give a pretty decent texture and taste. The food will taste and smell like regular roasted food, since the fire and heat are not directly touching the food. However, with that being said, griddles are great for cooking all types of food, and can even be used for frying.
Convenience is a must when it comes to cooking. We don’t want to be standing in the epicenter of the heat for hours at a time. We think that grills provide the most convenience, but you be the judge.
Grills are twice as fast as griddles for cooking food. The main reason is that there is no flat steel surface between the food and the heat, unlike the griddle. This means that a simple outdoor steak will only take a few minutes before hitting our plates. However, the grill is lesser portable, as it mostly consists of a stand, legs, covers, lid, and more. All of these can be near impossible to carry around.
The griddle is a slow cooker, and will require long hours of standing in the heat and flipping over those shish kebabs. But most griddles, especially the electrical kind, are easier to move around and can easily fit inside a large or small kitchen. These are most common with restaurant owners and are widely used commercially.
Whichever choice is better for you, the price is a major deciding factor.
Grills are relatively cheaper as compared to griddles. You can find pocket-friendly products, and can be quite easy to use and set up. The price mostly depends on the type, style, brand, quality, and fuel source. We’d recommend buying a grill which isn’t too cheap but neither too expensive.
Griddles can cost a lot more than grills, and can be just as easy to set up. Griddles can be purchased on a very wide price range. Electric griddles are more portable but could cost more, while traditional charcoal griddles can be a menace to carry around, but be lighter on the budget.
Both the griddle and the grill can be found in a number of varieties, including electrical and charcoal-powered.
Charcoal grills are the classic favorite. They are cheaper to operate, and leave an essence of smoked magma and charred wood. However, these grills can have ridiculously surplus parts, and the setup and portability can be a headache. Electric grills are more portable. They are even safer as there is no direct fire or heat. Gas grills are a lesser popular choice, and usually require a propane tank. This gas tank, however, can present multiple health hazards.
Most griddles use charcoal just like traditional grills. Griddles are slightly easier to setup, and many have wheels for easy movability. Electric griddles are easier to port, but many can even present a health hazard. Gas powered griddles rarely exist, and are a lesser popular choice.
In this era of roasted barbecues and incinerated steaks, grills and griddles will continue to be our go-to choices for a perfect mid-summer family gathering. After all, who doesn’t love a nice hot steel behemoth?
The decision is entirely in your hands, and no one can take a better step than you.
So pull out your wallets and get yourself a decent barbecue!