What’s A Sear Station & How Do I Use It?

What’s A Sear Station & How Do I Use It?

For several years, many models of Weber grills have come with a Sear Station ® , but it remains one of the less well understood features of our grills.

 We’re aiming to clear up any confusion surrounding how to best use the Sear Station, and what advantages there are to owning a Weber grill with one.

First off, what is a Sear Station?

The Sear Station is basically three burners that are closer together than the other burners on the grill. What this does is create a zone on the grill that can get hotter much faster than other areas, which is great for speeding up the time it takes to get the grates hot enough for searing. You can sear on a grill without a Sear Station, but you’ll have to wait a bit longer.


So, now that we know what a Sear Station is, how do we use it?

Using the Sear Station is very simple, but there are a few simple things to keep in mind. Let’s walk through the process of using one.

You’ll want to start your grill as you normally would. Open the lid, turn on the fuel source, and light the main burners (keep the sear burner off during pre-heating). Close the lid and let the grill pre-heat for about 15 minutes, until it reaches about 500 to 550F.

Once the grill has been pre-heated it’s time to light the Sear Station.

For Summit models, turn the outer burners to off or to low, and then light the Sear Station.
For Genesis models, turn the right burner to off or low, and then light the Sear Station.

Now it’s time to put the food to be seared onto the Sear Station. Depending on what is being cooked, you’ll need to sear each side of the food anywhere from 1 to 4 minutes, but don’t be afraid to experiment with searing times to get the results that work best for you.

Once you’re done searing, you can move the food to a different part of the cooking grates, where the heat is lower, to finish the cooking process.

Some people like to employ the “reverse sear” method, in which the food is cooked almost to completion over a more lower temperature, and then moved to the Sear Station just before it’s done to sear it.

Searing is what produces those classic grill marks on food, and it provides a texture and taste contrast that make any food more interesting to eat. The more you use and experiment with the Sear Station, the better you’ll get at making unbelievably delicious food that will delight guests at your next barbecue.

What are your thoughts? (20)

01.31.17

Sandra S

What is the difference between the Spirit SP 330 and the Genesis E 330 searing stations? We just bought the Genesis 330 and I am wondering what is different?
Sandy Susko

01.31.17

John Burns

Hi Sandra! The sear station on both the Spirit SP-330 and Genesis E-330 function the same, and they will also provide the same results. This goes for any of our models that include a sear station. Whether you go with a Spirit SP-330 or a Genesis E-330, you’ll be able to get the same great results. Let us know if you have any other questions, and grill on! John

Thanks!

01.11.17

daniel v

I would like to know why the new genesis II lx S-240 doesn't have a sear station. Is it because it has some type of new technology that is better ? thanks

01.11.17

John Burns

Hi Daniel! You bring up a great question! The new Genesis II LX S-240 (and all Genesis II LX models) feature what we are calling a “High +” setting. When the burners are set to High + they will be operating more or less just like the sear stations on our other models, only the entire grilling surface can essentially be considered a sear station. That’s not to say that you can’t sear on models that don’t have the High + setting or a sear station, but searing might take a little bit longer. Let us know if you have any other questions and grill on! John

Thanks!

11.14.16

Neal V

Just used my E330 for the first time tonight. Loved this feature . Put a great crust on my lamb chops. When I have this burner going with the other two on high wonder what temp those grates are at.

11.13.16

John Burns

Hi Neal! I’m glad to hear you’re loving your new E-330! While we don’t have an exact temperature to provide for the grates, you can be sure the area directly above the sear burner is going to be hot enough to create some great sear marks more effectively than the other areas of the grates. If you’re interested in getting more exact temperature readings from your grill, you might want to check out our iGrill thermometer line: http://product.weber.com/igrill/. Thanks and grill on! John

11.11.16

Doug H

Geat info! Does the searing area take away from the grilling area,, or do you just lower searing temp and grill right over it as well? ?~2....weber models are almost overwhelming,,,,what model has good size cooking area w/searing,, but no side burner type extras,,,,,for the novice..?? Between 4 and 7 hundred.....?? Appreciate ya

11.11.16

John Burns

Hi Doug! The searing area won’t take away from the main grilling area. It just gets hotter faster than the surrounding areas. If you just want to focus on standard grilling and aren’t as concerned about producing bold sear marks then you could just turn the sear burner off. Based on the model you described looking for, you’ll probably be interested in the Spirit E-310. It has 424 square inches of primary cooking area, no side burner and falls into the price range you’re looking for. It doesn’t have a sear burner, but it’s certainly possible to sear without one. To get a sear burner you’d need to step up to the Spirit E-330, but it does come with a side burner. The Spirit E-310 is perfect for a grilling novice, as it’s got all the features you’d need to basic grilling, but is big enough to be versatile if you want to get into more advanced grilling. Thanks and grill on! John

09.19.16

Heather Y

You mention that for preheating purposes not to turn on the searing station along with the three burners. I'd like to know why not? What type of problem or damage could this cause?

09.18.16

John Burns

Hi Heather! You’re unlikely to cause any damage or problems if you preheat with the sear burner on, but for the most predictable results we’ve designed our grills to be pre-heated without having the sear burner on. Let us know if you have more questions! Thanks! John

Thanks!

09.13.16

David V

I am thinking about buying a Spirit S330 GBS. But I am a bit confused about the following ?

I see the Sear Station is on the left, and the round "GBS" crate is in the center.
So, if i want to use a Sears crate, it will be in the center, whereas the Sear Station remains (of course) on the left.

Hum... is my understanding correct (I have not seen the grill in real life) ?
Is this 'misalignment' not problematic ?

If so, where should I grill my steak (left or center) ?

Thanks

09.13.16

John Burns

Hi David! The sear grate for the Gourmet BBQ System is actually totally independent of the sear station burner, but both are designed to achieve similar results. You could grill your steaks in either location and they should come out with fantastic sear marks. Let us know if you have any other questions! John

08.15.16

Kirk J

I'm curious about the point of turning the right burner to off or low, and the point of that. I just moved to a new EP-330, for a real old Genesis Silver C. Can a person simply turn the sear station burner off and finish the steak over the left side of the grill rather than move it. Often times I'm already cooking something like vegetables on the other side. Those may or may not be on high. It just depends. If that side of the grill is already full, I'd like to still benefit from the sear station, but continue to cook the steak on the left. Will the heat dissipate, or will it just burn my steak, and or simply build up too much heat all around. To me grilling is typically a high heat thing.

08.15.16

John Burns

Hi Kirk! Turning the right burner to off or low allows you to create a lower temperature zone so you have a place to move food to from the hotter sear station area. You certainly can just turn off the sear burner when you are done using it and finish the steak in the same area, but be aware that the steak is going to cook faster than it would if you had moved it to the cooler, right side of the grill. Don’t be afraid to experiment with your burner settings and your food placement on the grill to get the results that work best for you. Thanks! John

08.09.16

Scott R

Hi John! I have the E-330 with sear station. When I warm up my grill with all 3 burners on it's gets the temperature needle over 800F! Insane hot.

I've tried a lot of different things to get my steaks perfect, but just can't seem to do it. What's the best way to get a 3/4" Ribeye to a nice medium rare? Most of what I read is sear is a few minutes on each side, then transfer to low heat for another minute or 3 on each side. I do this on the E-330 and it seems to go straight from Rare to Medium Well for me.

Any suggestions?

08.09.16

John Burns

Hi Scott! 800 F is way beyond what we’d expect the grill to max out at, so I suspect there may be something else going on. With temperatures that high I’m not surprised to hear that you have had trouble keeping your steaks from getting over done. Please reach out to us at support@weberstephen.com and we can help you troubleshoot the issue. Please register your grill here before writing to us. https://help.weber.com/register/ Thanks! John

07.18.16

Alexandre B

Hi just bought a Genesis E330 and about to cook steaks tonight. So if I read correctly, I have to turn on the three main burners wait till the temperature reaches 500-550F. At that point I can turn the Sear Station Burner on and turn off the right burner or turn it to low. From there I can cook my steaks over the Sear Station Burner on with the left and center main burners on to full temperature?

07.18.16

John Burns

Hi Alexandre! Based on what you described, you have a perfect grasp of how to use your sear station! You should have some beautiful sear marks on your steaks in no time! Let me know if you have more questions. Thanks! John

07.11.16

Siyanbola O

i have a genesis special with no sear station
how do i get a good sear what modifications do i need to achieve this

07.11.16

John Burns

Hi Siyanbola! A sear station is not necessary to be able to sear food. They just hasten the process. To get sear marks on your Genesis the most important thing to do is make sure you are fully preheating the grill to 500 – 550 F, and then adjust your burners to the desired temperature you wish to grill your food at. It isn’t possible to modify a grill to have a sear station if it did not originally come with one. Please check out my other blog on searing for more tips: http://www.weber.com/weber-nation/blog/how-to-sear. Thanks! John

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