Lookin’ Ain’t Cookin’

Lookin’ Ain’t Cookin’

We have an old saying here at Weber that is considered the golden rule in grilling. If you're lookin', you ain't cookin'. Every griller should live by this mantra and always remember it as a golden rule upon which great grillers are built.

So what does it mean? Simple, keep the lid closed when you are grilling. Grilling with the lid open is a bad habit which is done by amateur grillers. Weber grillers know the key to perfect back yard grilling is keeping the lid closed. Grilling with the lid closed is a very simple tip which many people overlook. If you are looking to raise the level of your grilling abilities this step is essential. By keeping the lid open the grill will lose heat and will cause your foods to be grilled longer. By keeping the lid closed you allow the Weber grill to do what it was designed to do, grill!!! By keeping the heat inside the grill, food will grill faster and be more flavorful.

One major advantage to grilling with the lid closed is controlling flare ups. Weber grills are designed and engineered to eliminate flare ups. This is done by our legendary flavorizer bar system. The flavorizer bars system is the heart of Weber® Gas Grills. A single row of Flavorizer® Bars eliminates annoying flare-ups by vaporizing juices and creating the smoke that gives every meal that barbecue flavor. I can't even tell you how often people ask me how to control flare-ups and how to get better grilling results. Grilling with the lid closed is the best possible way to achieve both. I know is seems very simple but keeping the lid closed is the single best way to grill foods properly and get the best possible grilled results. For the charcoal lovers out there, the genius of a Weber kettle's design is that it allows hot air to circulate throughout the grill. This circulation allows for perfect convection style grilling. By keeping the lid closed throughout the grilling process flare ups are virtually eliminated and food is grilled to perfect.

Again it's important to recognize that Weber grills are designed and engineered to grill your food to perfection. I know it might be difficult at first but one of the most important things you can do is trust your Weber. I promise it will not let you down.

What are your thoughts? (24)

07.23.14

Mary S

Thanks for your prompt reply and great information.

07.22.14

Mary S

OK, I have just purchased the Genesis E320 BBQ with side burner in Canada and I note only oiling the food to be cooked and the 15 minutes of preheating, but what OIL do you use to brush on the food? I have seen different answers. Is it canola oil, olive oil or what? Also, what size of tinfoil drip tray do you use when using the Weber rotisserie model 7519 for the Genesse E320? Thanks very much.

MFS


07.21.14

Kevin Kolman

Hi Mary,

Congratulations on the new Weber Genesis E-320. You are correct regarding the amount of time to preheat your grill, so be sure to stick to that. It’s good to hear that you are oiling the food and not the cooking grates as well. You can use a variety of oils. A few that are recommended are: olive oil, canola oil, corn oil, or grape seed oil. Any of them will help prevent your food from sticking to the cooking grates.

As far as a drip pan, I suggest using a 9x13 inch disposable pan underneath your food when you use the rotisserie. You can add a little water, beer, juice, or wine in this pan to help add some amazing flavor to your food as well.

Happy Grilling!
-Kevin

06.01.14

Robert R

Hi Kevin,

Which way do the grates go - flat side up or angle side up? I have the Spirit E-210.
Thanks.

05.31.14

Kevin Kolman

Hi Robert,

The grates go flat side up.

Happy Grilling!
-Kevin

04.20.14

Anthony D. R

Hi,

I just bought a Spirit e320 gas grill. My initial advise was to season the grills but, after doing so, I called Weber to ask a technical question and, while I had the Rep on the phone, I asked about the seasoning process. I was told by the lady I spoke to, "Your grill comes with porcelain enameled grills. Did the maintenance instructions tell you to season them ? No. You didn't need to do anything to them. Good luck, you just ruined your grills. Get ready for them to rust".

Subsequently, I had to call back to ask another question and the next lady I spoke to told me not to worry about the seasoning, She said that it was unnecessary to season them but no different than the normal build-up that would occur from regular cooking.

Can someone tell me if what the first lady so rudely said was true ? While I now understand that seasoning them was unnecessary, did I really ruin them ? It would seem to me that what the second lady I spoke to said makes sense. While unnecessary, seasoning the grates shouldn't harm them any more that the normal coating that builds up from cooking on them over time.

Can someone from Weber give me the straight info ? I'd hate to think I bought a top of the line grill only to ruin it on it's first use.

Also, I'm not clear, can you also tell me if the best way to clean them is with a steel brush. I'm not clear if that can damage the porcelain coating as well.

Tony

04.20.14

Kevin Kolman

Hi Anthony,

First, congratulations on the Spirit E-320. That is an amazing grill. As for the seasoning concerning, you do not have anything to worry about. Yes, your grates are porcelain-enamel, but putting a little “fat or seasoning” on them will not cause them to rust. If anything, it will help with caramelization. Also, the absolute best way to clean your grates is to use a Weber stainless steel bristle brush right after you preheat your grill. We have tested and retested the brush and know it will not cause any damage to your grill. Let us know if you have any other questions. Enjoy your new Weber!

Happy Grilling!
Kevin

09.21.13

Andy K

I've read about what to do before the first use (E-330 propane), and there isn't much. Just oil the food, not the grates. However, I cranked it up to about 650 degrees with nothing in it, and it created a lot of smoke (that had a plastic smell). I removed all the protective stuff before I fired it up. Is this normal? I don't think it would be good to cook in there.

09.21.13

Kevin Kolman

Hi Andy,

First, congratulations on your new Weber Genesis E-330. What an amazing grill! Now, what you smell is the oils from the manufacturing process being burned off. There is no need to worry. You are correct regarding oiling the food and not the grates, so keep that up. In addition, make sure you preheat the grill each and every time you use it. Let me know if you have any other questions.

Happy Grilling!
-Kevin

08.05.13

W.S. W

In relation to the comment above regarding the new style cast iron grates, I too am bewildered as to the new design. I started with a Weber Kettle, bought a Spirit 3.5 years ago, and was ready Saturday to upgrade to a Genesis E-330 until I saw the cast iron grate. It is misleading to see the older triangle shape grate that I have on my Spirit shown on the Weber website picture of the E-330. I really like that grate, but in the store, the pointed side had elevated cross bars that would hamper cooking ( this is how every grill was displayed ) and the reverse side had extremely wide grates which, in my opinion, would really make for excessively crusty grill marks rather than a small discernible pattern.

I understand that Weber can't please everyone but I will choose to not spend in excess of 800.00 on something in which I am not totally in agreement.

As always, Caveat Emptor....

05.28.13

MaryBeth V

Kevin,

Thanks for the prompt reply. I'll give it a whirl "on the flat side" and see how it goes! That said, the geek in me is curious about the change...is there a reason for the change?

05.28.13

Kevin Kolman

Hi MaryBeth,

It all boils down to the performance of the grill. We have found that the design of the grates and grilling on the flat side adds to the overall performance of the grill. I hope this helps.

Happy Grilling!
-Kevin

05.28.13

MaryBeth V

I'd also like to ask a question about the PCI grates. We just purchased a Genesis E330, and the grates that came with the grill look nothing like the grates in any of Weber's promotional materials for the E330. While all the Weber pictures show a grate with a continuous front to back bars that are tapered or "triangular"on the cooking surface, our grates have two sides -- a side with flat front to back bars, each bar about .75cm wide; and a side with bars having a more traditional triangular shape. The side with the triangularly shaped bars, however, is not continuous from front to back, but is broken up by 2 "support" bars that cross from left to right, making it impossible to easily run a spatula from front to back.

It is simply unclear which side of the grate I am supposed to use for grilling! The flat side seems odd (and contrary to ever grill I have ever seen), but the cross supports on the side with the triangle bars make it near impossible to use a spatula in any kind of continuous way from front to back. Help!

05.05.13

Cordell F

Hi Kevin. I'm confused.

I just bought a Genesis BBQ with cast iron grates. So far I've used it three times. I didn't prepare my grates or season them in any way because I read on your blog that there's no need. You said apply oil to the food, not the grates.

Today I went to Weber's website to register my BBQ and in doing so I read some of their FAQ including a paragraph about how important it is to prepare cast iron grates before the first use. This process includes a procedure to remove a wax protective coating that was applied for shipping, applying a coating of vegetable oil, and heating the grates for 60-90 minutes. This is totally opposite to your instructions!

Here's a copy of the detailed instructions from Weber's website:
"To maintain the wonderful searing/grilling performance of your cast iron grates or griddle, as well as their longevity, some special care is required. As with any cast iron cooking tool, proper seasoning is most important.

First time use: Before using a cast iron grate or griddle, wash it thoroughly with a mild dishwashing liquid to remove the protective wax coating applied for shipping. Rinse with hot water and dry completely with a soft cloth or paper towel. NEVER ALLOW TO DRAIN DRY, OR WASH IN A DISHWASHER. Now season the grates/griddle to prevent rust and sticking.

Seasoning: A solid vegetable shortening is recommended for the initial seasoning. Spread a thin coating of solid vegetable shortening over the entire surface, including all corners, with a paper towel. Do not use salted fats such as butter or margarine. Proceed as follows:

Gas grills: Preheat grill for 15 minutes, place grates/griddle in grill. Turn burners to Medium-Off-Medium with lid closed. Allow grill to heat grates/griddle for 1 to 1½ hours. Turn all burners to OFF, and leave cooking grates/griddle in grill until they are cool."

- Who's correct? You or Weber? Please clarify.
- Have I missed out by not properly preparing my grates before first use? Is it too late to do so now?
- Did my first steak from this BBQ include a layer of melting shipping wax?

Thanks
CJ

05.05.13

Kevin Kolman

Hi CJ,

First, congratulations on the Weber Genesis Gas Grill. I know you are going to enjoy it for years to come. Second, let's talk about the grates. At one time, Weber used to have cast iron grates in our grills. The instructions you included in your response were for those specific grates. About 7-10 years ago, Weber developed a porcelain enameled cast-iron grate that is ready for use right out of the box. This made our consumers very happy because you did not have to go through the instructions you shared. All you had to do was put them in the grill, turn it on, and get started.

The grates you have on your grill are the porcelain enameled cast-iron grates, and they were ready for use right away. There should be no shipping wax, and no worry about properly preparing and/or seasoning them. The grates are grill ready so that the only thing you need to think about is the food on them.

Thank you for the great question. I'm glad we were able to clarify. If you have any other questions, please do not hesitate to ask.

Happy Grilling!
-Kevin

04.13.13

Scott S

Hi,

I bought the Genesis E310 (natural gas) grill. I am wondering if you can tell me exactly what I should do prior to first use. I have been told about wiping vegetable oil on the grates. Anything else?

04.13.13

Kevin Kolman

Hi Scaschwa,

Congratulations on your new Weber Genesis E-310! That is one great grill you have! What I recommend first is to read the owner?s manual and make sure you follow the grilling guide that was provided with your grill. Also, stay away from using vegetable oil on the grates. This does not help in any way. The majority falls down the sides of the grates and the rest will get burned off during the preheating process. Do yourself a favor and lightly oil your food instead. Besides that, always preheat your grill for 10-15 minutes and you should be on the right track. I hope this helps. Enjoy your new Weber Genesis!

Happy Grilling!
-Kevin