There is nothing quite like using your Blackstone to cook up a storm, but can the Blackstone be used in the winter?
I have wondered about this topic since I bought my Blackstone a year ago. I had no idea and wanted to find out more before I tried it for myself; I mean, no one wants to ruin their Blackstone on a whim.
According to experts, you can use a Blackstone griddle in cold weather and even snow. There are some things you need to consider before using your grill in the cold. If your grill heats up too quickly, it might warp the surface. You will use more propane, and you should use wind guards and a griddle hood.
Before I tested out my Blackstone griddle in the winter, I had to research to ensure that I didn’t damage my Blackstone. I asked my friend, who has had one for longer than me, if he ever used it in the winter.
In this post, I decided to write about what I discovered and what my friend taught me about the Blackstone griddle.
Can You Use a Blackstone in the Winter?
According to the Blackstone website, you can use your Blackstone in the winter. Winter, in this case, will be temperatures that fall below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
You will need to consider a couple of the following things before you fire up your grill, though. We will be discussing the following in this post:
- Griddle precautions
- Can the Blackstone get wet
- Proper storage
- Tips to keep the Blackstone from rusting
- Some tips to ensure you get the best out of your Blackstone griddle in winter
Using Your Blackstone Griddle in the Winter
Before you put on your jacket and mittens to go grill outside in the cold, there are a few factors to remember when using your Blackstone griddle in the winter.
Blackstone Griddle Precautions
Here are some of the factors you need to think about before you fire up your Blackstone is:
The Temperature of the Blackstone
When you use the Blackstone in temperatures lower than 40 degrees Fahrenheit, you need to be careful of griddle surface warp. The quick change in temperature going from freezing to high will cause the surface to warp as the griddle has to expand too quickly.
You can store your Blackstone in the garage before using it and start on the lowest heat setting to avoid this altogether. When the grill has thawed a bit more, you can slowly increase the heat as you go. Never put the Blackstone on the highest setting immediately.
You, Will, Use More Gas
You need to consider that to keep the griddle at the sizzling temperature you want; the Blackstone will use more gas as it tries to keep the griddle at optimum temperature in the surrounding cold. The gas Blackstone will use more propane in the wintertime as it regulates the grill’s heat.
You Should Consider Buying Wind Guards and a Griddle Hood
The one thing your griddle needs is consistent airflow to stay at optimum temperature. So when the cold air keeps coming into the side of the Blackstone, it lowers the temperature, and the heat decreases.
To solve this issue, you can add wind guards. The wind guards will keep the cold wind out and allow the warm air to circulate and regulate the temperature. The other way to help regulate the temperature and keep the cold from ruining your feast is to use a griddle hood.
A griddle hood is not a necessity, but you can reduce the cooking time as the hot air is circulated inside the Blackstone by using the hood in snow and cold weather. You get some Blackstones that come with a hood, or you can buy one separately.
The Cooking Time Will Be Longer
The Blackstone will take longer to heat up and regulate the temperature, and because you are cooking outside in cold temperatures, your meal will take longer to cook than if the weather was warmer.
Can the Blackstone Get Wet?
Blackstone’s have a fully enveloped griddle cover that helps keep the moisture away from your grill. The PVC coating on the grill cover protects the Blackstone from corroding. There were some complaints on a few forums about the Blackstone rusting despite the cover.
According to Blackstone, this grill can be used in any condition as the PVC cover will keep the grill dry and clean. It may be best to keep your Blackstone out of any rainstorms just to be on the safe side.
Is My Blackstone Griddle Ruined If It Is Rusted?
If you forgot to put your Blackstone away before a rainstorm broke out or forgot to put the hood on and see the top rusted, does that mean your Blackstone griddle is ruined?
Not at all, it’s not the worst thing that could happen to your Blackstone, and it is fixable. Blackstone sells a Griddle Refurbishing kit that will help get rid of your griddle’s rust on the top. The kit will help you safely remove the rust without damaging your griddle.
Here are some easy ways to avoid your grill from rusting in the future:
Season the Grill When Needed
Remember to keep your grill seasoned. You need to reseason the grill when you have given it a good clean or when you remove the season because it was peeling. The seasoning protects the grill top and will stop the rust from forming.
Use a Scraper When Cleaning Your Grill
When you have stuck on grime or the season is peeling on your grill, you can avoid using too much water by using a scraper to help loosen the grime you want to remove and clean.
Protect Your Seasoning
When you are worried about your seasoning getting ruined in colder months and thus your grill rusting, you can spread a thin layer of oil every time you have used and cleaned your Blackstone before putting it away.
Use the Cover
While using the cover after each use is not absolutely necessary, if you want to keep your Blackstone from rusting, it would be one of the best ways of protecting your grill from rust and corrosion.
Storing a Blackstone During the Rainy Season
To keep the Blackstone dry and clean, the best place to store it is in a garage, a shed, or an outdoor building. This way, rain, humidity, and other outdoor elements can’t erode Blackstone or damage the various nooks and crannies of the grill.
On the other hand, if you store your Blackstone outside, you still need to protect it from the elements. Some owners of a Blackstone griddle have said that the cover is not as water-resistant as they thought, and the rainwater leaked through the cover, pooled on the grill, and started to rust.
To avoid this from happening to your Blackstone, you can store it on the patio, deck, or somewhere with an overhead cover. The grill is exposed to the least amount of rain and snow.
Some Tips for Using the Blackstone in the Winter
Why do you need to stop using your Blackstone griddle in the colder months when you can still enjoy delicious meals even in the coldest months of the year. Here are a few tips that will help you get the best out of your Blackstone griddle in the winter.
Always Have Extra Fuel
In the wintertime, grills can use double the amount of fuel to keep the heat consistent, so before you start, you should check the gas tank and ensure there is enough gas for whatever food you will be cooking.
It’s always best to be prepared, so it may be a good idea to have an extra tank of propane on hand in case you run out before your food is cooked.
Cook Smaller Portions
Now we all love our big portions, but food cooks slower in the outdoors during winter, so you can still have a high volume meal, but to ensure it cooks faster (because no one should be out in the cold for hours on end), cut your food into smaller pieces. Smaller pieces cook faster than normal-sized portions and save you lots of time.
Preheat Your Blackstone
One of the best methods to speed up the cooking process and get you inside and out of the cold weather quicker is to preheat your Blackstone griddle. When you preheat the grill, you get the hard work of regulating the temperature out of the way.
For example, if you don’t preheat the Blackstone before you cook and the cold causes the temperature to fluctuate too much, you might get undercooked or rubbery food. By ensuring the Blackstone is preheated, you will cook your food faster and at a balanced temperature, so evenly cooked food won’t take forever to cook.
Remember to start on the lowest heat setting when cooking or preheating your Blackstone; you want to avoid warping the grill surface at all costs, so you need to start earlier than you normally would in the summer as the preheating step can take longer.
Don’t Try to Cook Frozen Food
When you want to use your Blackstone in cold weather, the food needs to be at room temperature. Frozen food or food that comes directly out of the fridge will not only cook for longer, but it will have a tougher texture.
You can defrost your food the day before and leave it out of the fridge for at least a few hours before cooking it on your Blackstone.
Keep the Snow Out
While using your Blackstone, you need to ensure that the snow and rain don’t fall on your grill or food. When the grill is hot, and you add a little water, you might get burned as the water and grease or oil splatters.
The other reason to keep the snow and rainwater off your grill when cooking is that the snow might be contaminated with all kinds of things.
Scientists have found strange things like pesticides and other harmful toxins in snow that they collected and tested. To ensure you don’t get sick, be on the safe side and keep the hood on and the snow out.
Don’t Use a Lot of Water When You Clean Your Blackstone
In winter, food can stick to the grill top easier than in summer as the colder temperatures harden the fat and seasoning when you turn your Blackstone off. That means you will need to use water to help get the sticky, hardened food off, but if you use too much water, it might cause your seasoning to peel off.
So keep your grill on the lowest setting and use gloves while cleaning your grill in the winter, it will protect you, and the water will evaporate before the seasoning can start to peel off.
You Can Use a Tarp or Plastic Wrap for Further Protection
To help protect the grill top, you can cover the grill top by putting plastic wrap directly on the grill top to keep as much moisture out as possible.
If you are not happy with using the cover for your Blackstone, you can buy a plastic trap and put it on the grill to keep it from getting damaged by the elements if stored in the open.
Wipe It Down When You Are Done
After cleaning your Blackstone, you mustn’t just put it away. You should use a paper towel to dry off any wet areas or areas where the grill looks damp.
After that, you can put the thin oil layer on the grill top. If you put the oil on in wet places, the oil won’t fully protect the grill top, and it might rust, or the seasoning might peel off.
Using your Blackstone in the winter is not a bad idea; in fact, there are many people that use it all year. There are some basics you need to remember to keep the Blackstone from getting damaged.
You need to preheat the Blackstone on the lowest setting and slowly turn the heat up to avoid warping the grill. You can use wind guards and a grill hood to keep the wind out and the heat in, and you can cook up a storm.
Be sure to store your Blackstone out of the rain and snow to keep it from rusting.
Ben has a bachelor’s degree in construction engineering. When not constructing or remodeling X-Ray Rooms, Cardiovascular Labs, and Pharmacies, you can find him at home with wife and two daughters. Outside of family, He loves grilling and barbequing on his Big Green Egg and Blackstone Griddle, as well as working on projects around the house.
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