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10 Best Grill Pans for Steak and Vegetables

There are few things better than a smoky, charred, and deliciously juicy seared steak or a handful of grilled vegetables. If you don’t have access to an outside grill, don’t worry: you can still get the iconic seared grate markings on whatever you’re cooking. A grill pan is introduced.

These pans, like indoor grills, allow you to grill indoors, but they don’t require an electrical outlet and may get hot because you regulate the heat on your cooktop. The ridges on these pans not only assist generate sear marks, but they also keep your food raised above its natural fluids and fat, resulting in less greasy outcomes when compared to conventional cooking techniques. While a grill pan won’t produce the same results as an outdoor grill (the lack of charcoal or wood chips means you’ll miss out on the smoky flavour), it’s a great option for apartment dwellers who don’t have access to an outdoor space, or a quick winter solution for when it’s too cold to fire up the grill.There are also some excellent grill pans for use outside.

Grill pans of various forms, sizes, and materials have been tested at the Good Housekeeping Institute Kitchen Appliances and Technology Lab to discover the benefits of each. We grilled close to 40 burgers and sampled over 15 dishes in total over the course of 8 hours. We looked at how heavy they were, how comfortable they were to grip, and how well they fit on different gas stoves. Finally, we grilled burgers on a variety of grills to examine how many could fit in a pan, what type of grill marks they produced, how the oil pooled, and how simple they were to clean. Following are the best grill pans you can purchase in 2021, based on hours of testing, popular brands, and editor favourites:

  • Best Overall Grill Pan: Le Creuset Square Grill Pan
  • Best Value Grill Pan: Gotham Steel Aluminum Grill Pan
  • Best Nonstick Grill Pan: All-Clad NS1 Nonstick Square Grill
  • Best Ceramic Nonstick Grill Pan: GreenPan Valencia Pro Ceramic Nonstick Grill Pan
  • Best Cast Iron Grill Pan: Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Grill Pan
  • Best Single Burner Grill Pan: Staub Enameled Cast Iron Pure Grill
  • Best Grill Pan for Entertaining: Le Creuset Enameled Cast Iron Skinny Grill
  • Most Versatile Grill Pan: Lodge Cast Iron Single-Burner Reversible Grill/Griddle
  • Best Outdoor Grill Pan: Weber Style Professional-Grade Grill Pan
  • Best 2-in-1 Grill Pan: Food52 x Staub 2-in-1 Grill Pan & Cocotte
 
Aluminum Grill Pan
REASONS TO BUY
  • Budget-friendly
  • Easy to clean
  • Nonstick surface
REASONS TO AVOID
  • Not induction safe

We adore this Gotham Steel aluminium nonstick pan for a grill pan that’s light on the pocket. In our experiments, we discovered that maintaining this pan was easier than maintaining a cast iron pan, and it was also significantly lighter (less than two pounds). It’s also oven and dishwasher safe up to 500°F, however you can’t use it on an induction burner. For one burner, the square form is economical and can fit four burgers at once.

In opposed to a grill pan with a matte black inside, the brown interior is especially useful when it comes to cleaning since you can quickly detect any lingering burnt pieces or stuck on food. Though it won’t get the same super-charred, deep grill marks as cast iron, this grill pan is a wonderful place to start.

BEST OVERALL GRILL PAN

REASONS TO BUY
  • Enameled cast iron reaches high temps and is easy to clean
  • Short handle makes pan comfortable to hold
  • Comes in an assortment of colors
REASONS TO AVOID
  • Expensive
  • Heavy

This Le Creuset pan boasts a handy handle with an opposing loop handle for ease handling, high ridges for deep sear marks, slanted sides for optimal grilling, and a pour spout.

It can achieve high temperatures and evenly distribute heat, much like cast iron, but it doesn’t require any specific seasoning or cleaning. It works with any type of burner, including induction, gas, electric, and ceramic. It’s heavier than most rivals at seven pounds, but we found it manageable because to the short handle that helps balance it. We adore Le Creuset products for their timeless endurance, which comes with a lifetime warranty.

BEST CERAMIC NONSTICK GRILL PAN

REASONS TO BUY
  • Lightweight
  • Easy to clean
  • Dishwasher-, oven-, and broiler-safe
REASONS TO AVOID
  • Ceramic can overheat quickly

This hard anodized ceramic nonstick grill pan is a lighter, simpler to maintain choice if you don’t want to add another heavy, bulky cast iron pan to your arsenal of cookware. It’s oven and broiler safe, as well as metal utensil and dishwasher safe. The pan’s spherical surface area heats up rapidly, and the side handles are easy to grasp, making it easy to manage (though they do heat up, so always use them with mitts). While ceramic nonstick is easy to clean, it may overheat fast, making cooking a thick steak more difficult. A matching glass cover is available, but it must be purchased separately.

BEST NONSTICK GRILL PAN

REASONS TO BUY
  • Large square design with a lot of surface area
  • Nonstick
  • Easy to clean
REASONS TO AVOID
  • Handle is thin and does not have smooth, rounded edges
  • Not induction-safe

This pan is a terrific alternative if you’re searching for a high-quality nonstick solution that’s compact, easy to use, and won’t overheat rapidly. It’s composed of robust, scratch-resistant hard anodized aluminium with large ridges for precise grill marks. Although we found its narrow shape with defined edges to be difficult to grip and balance, its stainless steel handle makes it easier to move because it doesn’t become as hot as cast iron handles.

The pan is lighter than cast iron, yet it can still withstand high temperatures and is easy to clean. Its square design allows for effective space use. This pan will not work on induction stovetops, so use it with gas or electric stoves instead.

BEST SINGLE BURNER GRILL PAN

REASONS TO BUY
  • Sleek design and color options
  • Slim with easy-to-grab handles
  • Durable cast iron material
REASONS TO AVOID
  • Heavy
  • Expensive

Staub pans are our favourite enamelled cast iron pans because of their longevity, elegant appearance, and seasoned, matte inside. The 10-inch diameter and circular design provide plenty of cooking space, and the rounded handles are simple to grip even when hot. This tiny, little grill pan does not get in the way of pans on surrounding burners, despite the broad handles protruding out. Although there is no simple pour spout to drain off remaining liquids, we found that the high ridges on the pan allowed fluids to drip out and generated notable grill marks in our tests.

We appreciate that this appealing pan comes in a range of interesting colours to brighten up your kitchen, and that the coating resists rusting and splitting, and that it doesn’t require further seasoning like some other cast-iron items. The cleanup is a little more complicated than with nonstick or aluminium pans, but the durability and high heat capabilities are unbeatable.

BEST CAST IRON GRILL PAN

REASONS TO BUY
  • Offers both grill and griddle
  • Budget friendly
  • Spacious square shape
REASONS TO AVOID
  • Heavy
  • Requires diligent maintenance

Cast iron grill pans demand a little more care than other materials, but they produce a fantastic sear, so we believe the extra effort is worthwhile. This grill pan is the most well-rounded in terms of performance while being quite affordable. Its square form (10.5 inches) maximises surface area, allowing you to fit more food in the pan at once while remaining out of the way of other pans on surrounding burners. The pre-seasoned cast iron heats rapidly and maintains a consistent temperature.

This pan is heavier than other rivals at 6 12 pounds, but it’s not so big that it’s difficult to handle. It’s fantastic for camping and may be used on your backyard grill’s grates. This pan has one long handle for moving, and the other smaller handle is perfect for cleaning and scrubbing — but always put heat-resistant grips on the handles, since they will become quite hot.

MOST VERSATILE GRILL PAN

REASONS TO BUY
  • 2-in-1 grill and griddle design
  • Slim
  • Inexpensive
REASONS TO AVOID
  • Doesn’t sit completely flush on all stovetops

We appreciate that this reversible cast-iron grill pan features a griddle surface on the opposite side for eggs, pancakes, and anything else you’d like to pan-sear. Its square design allows you to completely fill this single-burner pan, which is great for cooking space. Although the grill lacks loop handles, the corner handles make it simple to rotate the pan when cleaning it (always handle with mitts). The pan weighs just under 8 pounds, so it’s a bit on the heavy side, but the two side handles make it manageable.

The pre-seasoned surface prevents food from sticking, and if you use this pan like you would any other cast iron pan, it will last a long time. While this pan is ideal for use on your cooktop (induction is good), it may also be used in the oven or over an open fire.

Try the Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Reversible Grill/Griddle if you need extra cooking space. It’s exactly as slender as the original, but it’s twice as big and fits over two burners. Because it gets quite hot and frequently sets off our smoke alarms, we prefer the single burner version.

BEST GRILL PAN FOR ENTERTAINING

REASONS TO BUY
  • Sleek design and fun colors
  • Cast iron can get super hot
REASONS TO AVOID
  • Expensive

If you plan on entertaining guests and cooking a large amount of food at once, you’ll need a strong grill pan with plenty of surface area. This enamelled cast iron is both stylish and sturdy (there are a variety of exciting colours to pick from). It has an induction cooktop with a wide rectangular form that allows you to cook many huge steaks or burgers at once. It may be used over one burner with considerable overhang, or it’s ideal for the long oval burner seen on many modern stoves. This pan is fairly light for its size, weighing only seven pounds.Although the side handles aren’t as simple to grip as a long handle, they’re useful for handling and cleaning (they got hot, so always wear mitts).

BEST 2-IN-1 GRILL PAN

REASONS TO BUY
  • Grill pan doubles as a lid to included pot
  • Enameled cast iron heats well
  • Comes in a variety of pretty colors
REASONS TO AVOID
  • Heavy
  • Grill gets hot; must be handled with mitts

This pan combines the benefits of a grill pan with the ability to be used as a cocotte. This sleek pan comes in a variety of bright colours and is not only entertaining to look at but also to cook with. It’s made of enamelled cast iron, which is quite sturdy and warms up quickly and readily. Cleaning takes some time, and its substantial weight makes it a little difficult to manoeuvre fast, but the longevity of this pan can’t be topped. This pan is versatile enough to sear a few steaks and vegetables or braise a large stew. Though it has a premium price tag, its elegant design and dual powers justify it:You won’t need both a Dutch oven and a grill pan if you use this.

BEST OUTDOOR GRILL PAN

REASONS TO BUY
  • Lightweight but durable
  • Easy to clean
  • Affordable
REASONS TO AVOID
  • Cannot be used indoors

Most grill pans are designed for indoor usage, but this professional-grade pan is perfect for sliding over your outdoor barbecue grates. This lightweight stainless steel pan maintains heat and cleans up quickly with warm, soapy water. Although the 18-inch slots are not as large as the grates on other indoor grill pans, they nonetheless enable the pan’s fluids to drain away from the meal. This grill pan is an excellent addition to your outdoor cooking setup since it makes it much easier to grill tiny foods such as shrimp, asparagus, broccoli, or scallops while bigger items are grilled directly on the grill adjacent to the pan.

The pan is inexpensive, making it a simple addition to any grilling station. While the meals in this pan won’t acquire as much char as those cooked directly over the grates, it does provide you a lot more control over the smaller items that can easily slide between the grates. Always double-check that this model fits your grill before making a purchase.

What to look for when buying a grill pan

✔️ Material: The first thing you’ll need to consider when shopping for a new grill pan is its construction. These are the most popular options:

  • Cast iron is a popular material for grill pans because it can withstand extremely high temperatures and retains heat efficiently. It’s more difficult to clean and maintain than other materials since it has to be season to avoid rusting, but it’s extremely robust and will help you get deep sear marks.
  • Enameled cast iron has all of the benefits of cast iron, but it’s easier to clean and maintain since it won’t rust if you wash it.
  • Hard anodized aluminium warms evenly and rapidly without overheating, and it’s far easier to clean than cast iron. If you’re concerned about sticking, this material is frequently coated with a nonstick surface; nevertheless, these surfaces are vulnerable to scratching and should not be heated to extremely high temperatures.
  • Another nonstick option is ceramic, which can heat up extremely rapidly but can overheat if left alone.

If you choose a two-burner grill pan, go for one made of a material that warms uniformly, such as cast iron, to avoid a cool zone between the burners.

✔️ Care instructions:It’s important noting if your grill pan’s material is dishwasher-safe, as this makes cleanup much easier. Cast iron will need to be scrubbed and cannot be washed in the dishwasher, although certain hard anodized and nonstick materials may be washed in the dishwasher but we recommend hand washing to extend the life of the pans.

✔️ Size and shape: The size and design of your grill pan will impact not only how much food you can cook at once, but also how heavy and manoeuvrable it is. Some grill pans are large enough to fit two burners, which is fantastic if you want to cook a lot of food at once. However, these lengthier pans are prone to getting extremely hot and smoking, which will certainly set off your smoke alarm. They are also more difficult to clean due to their big size. Heat is distributed more evenly with round pans, but surface area is lost. Although square pans provide greater cooking surface, their edges do not often become as hot or heat as uniformly as round pans.If you’re short on space and want the greatest versatility, a dual-sided grill pan with a griddle side for extra cooking possibilities is a good alternative.

✔️ Handles:The material and fit of a grill pan’s handle will have an impact on how simple the pan is to use. Cast iron handles will become quite hot, therefore always use heat protection. Metal and plastic handles both keep cold to the touch, however the latter is unlikely to be used in the oven. Some grill pans have two handles on each sides, which is convenient if the pan is very heavy, but others just have one handle, which makes cleaning and manoeuvring significantly more difficult. However, some grill pans do not have handles, so if quick handling is crucial to you, you should avoid these selections.

✔️ Pour spout:Pour spouts on the sides make it simple to remove collecting grease so that the food you’re preparing may acquire a deep sear, as well as cleaning and tossing the fat once you’ve finished cooking.