Top Grill Pans

Sometimes you just need a grill pan. No questions asked, no judgements made. A grill pan is what is called for, but which one? There are a lot of grill pans on the market these days and most of them are rubbish. A grill pan has raised ridges that mimic the cooking surface of an outdoor grill. It is these ridges that give foods grill marks and lifts it out of accumulating grease and drippings. This is the important part. Food sitting in oil in a hot frying pan sautés, but lifted out of this, it "grills" Grilling is a dry cooking method.

A good grill pan has the mass to build up heavy for searing and high ridges to keep foods out of the grease. These grill pans are the best you can buy for indoor grilling.

Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Grill Pan - Lodge Manufacturing
Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Grill Pan. Lodge Manufacturing

1.  Lodge Pre-Season Cast Iron 10.5-inch Grill Pan

While relatively small, the Lodge Grill Pan is heavy cast iron so it has the mass to build up heat making for good grilling capabilities. The ridges on this pan are high and this pan does a great job of basic grilling tasks. At under $40USD (generally) it is a very reasonable price. Be aware that this is not a non-stick pan and being cast iron it will require care to prevent rust. Also, this is a relatively small grill pan so it won't cook for large crowds.

Consider also purchasing the Lodge Ribbed Panini Press to add extra versatility to this grill pan. Buy from Amazon »

Staub 12-Inch Grill Pan and Press - Staub
Staub 12-Inch Grill Pan and Press. Staub

2.  Staub 12-Inch Grill Pan and Press

On the other end of the price scale is the $250 (or more) Staub Grill pan. At 12 inches, it is one of the large grill pans on the market. it also boasts the deepest ridges so it has a better capacity than most at draining away grease and comes with a Panini Press so it has a great deal of versatility. All in all, this is the best grill pan on the market but also has one of the highest price tags. Note that ar 10 pounds (without the press) this is also one of the heaviest so consider weight when purchasing. Buy from Amazon »

Lodge Cast Iron Reversible Griddle Grill - Lodge Manufacturing
Lodge Cast Iron Reversible Griddle Grill. Lodge Manufacturing

3.  Lodge Cast Iron Reversible Griddle/Grill

The two burner grill offers more space than the conventional pan and this one is reversible so it can cook pancakes in the morning and burgers in the evening. This grill also has a lot of mass, weighing in above 10 pounds so the transfer heat is excellent. This is the large grill.griddle you see in a number of cooking shows. Buy from Amazon »

Calphalon Contemporary Nonstick Grill Pan - Calphalon
Calphalon Contemporary Nonstick Grill Pan. Calphalon

4.  Calphalon Contemporary 11-Inch Nonstick Grill Pan

While heavy makes for a great grill pan, easy to clean and lightweight can have its advantages as well. This anodized aluminum grill pan from Calphalon has a nonstick surface and weighs only a couple of pans. For those who want something easier to handle, this is a great choice. Yes, it won't hold heat as well, but the other advantages make it an attractive choice.  Buy from Amazon »

Le Creuset Cast Iron 10 1/4-Inch Grill Pan - Le Creuset
Le Creuset Cast Iron 10 1/4-Inch Grill Pan. Le Creuset

5.  Le Creuset Enameled Cast-Iron 10 1/4-Inch Grill Pan

While small and more expensive than most, this grill pan offers the advantages of heavy cast iron with a durable enameled surface that makes it easy to clean. This grill pan is ideal for two but lacks the space to cook for much more. The exterior enamel comes in a wide range of colors, and of course, Le Creuset makes some of the best pans in the world.  Buy from Amazon »

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