A cast iron grill press, as its name tells, is used to speed up cooking by safely pressing meat or other foods down to increase heat contact and ensure even heat distribution. It is also known as a bacon press, steak weight, or hamburger press. A cast iron grill press can be used in a variety of ways. It is useful for removing fat from food like sausages, reducing grease splatter, and flattening your bacon. A grill press’s heavy metal surface distributes heat evenly and can reduce cooking time by up to 30% to 50%.
Buying a cast iron grill press can be complicated. This guide will walk you through the many considerations, from size and shape to cleaning and seasoning to handles, that you should consider when purchasing a cast-iron grill press.
Best Cast Iron Grill Presses
1. Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Grill Press
Cool-grip Spiral Handle provides a safe, comfortable grip
Size: 6.75 Inch x 4.5 Inch
Item shape: rectangular
Good weight less than 3 lbs ensure long life and press the food down
Flat and smooth bottom
Suitable for all kinds of grill cooking
Require pliers to tighten the handle
2. Cuisinart CGPR-221 Cast Iron Grill Press
Cast iron press with wood handle
With a lip around the bottom
Hand wash and dry fast
Weight: 2.8 pounds
Dimension: 9.3 x 4.7 x 3.7 inches
Suitable for large skillet and burgers
Needs to be seasoned properly after each use.
3. Bellemain Cast Iron Grill Press 8.5-inch Round
Sear bacon, steak, or sandwich evenly without raw or overcooked sections
Food grade iron cookware without harmful chemicals
Heavy-duty cast iron press with wood handle for safe cooking
Good weight to press the meat down
8.5 inches round to fit perfectly in skillets
Weight: 3 pounds
The wood handle may get hot after a long time of use in the skillet.
4. HIC Bacon Press and Steak Weight
Round and rectangle options are available
Distribute heat evenly
Structured with cast iron and wooden handle
Adorable pig pattern on the bottom
7.75 inch or 6.75 x 4-inch cooking surface fits pans perfectly
Suitable for careful use with non-stick pans
Hand wash, rinse, and dry
Need to be seasoned by yourself
5. New Star Foodservice Commercial Grade Iron Steak Weight
Popular on cooking videos
Optional sizes for different skillet size
Handy commercial grade
Single piece durable iron body
Wooden handle for comfortable grip
Weigh: 2 lbs
Need extra weight on the press for a burger or firm meat.
Be careful of the heat in using even it's a wooden handle.
6. Victoria Cast Iron Grill Press
Pre-seasoned with vegetable oil and ready to use.
Speed up meats and bacon from 8-4 minutes
Screw-removable cool-touch wood handle
Measures: 8.3 x 4.4 inch perfect for 12 inches cast iron pan
Weight: 2.15 lbs
It takes a little effort to scrub and completely dry with the bottom.
7. Homenote Round Cast Iron Press and Basting Dome
Professional chef-level griddle set
Dome: 12.5-inch large, 2.5mm thick, 304 stainless steel, can melt cheese on several burgers at a time. Make a great seal with a small lip.
Press: round, 7-inch diameter, cast iron
The press is not heavy enough for some people.
8. Jim Beam JB0158 Black Cast Iron Burger Press
Heavy cast iron body with firm wooden handle
Allow you to fully cook the bacon without curling up
Useful for pressing burgers, tortillas
Handwash and wipe dry can last a long time
The wooden handle could have better quality and package to prevent breakage in shipping.
9. Bruntmor 2-in-1 Pre-Seasoned Square Cast Iron Grill Pan and Press Set
Reversible grill pan with both sides pre-seasoned
Varied textures on both sides for different cooking methods
Excellent heat retention and balanced heating for grill cooking
Works with all cooktops, such as stovetop, induction, electric, oven, or gas
Press measure: 8.5” x 8.5”
Grill pan measure: surface 10.5"x10.5", with handles: 13"x10.5", bottom 7.5” x 7.5”
The cast-iron press may be very hot during cooking, you'd better wear gloves to touch it.
10. Norpro Italian Panini Sandwich Press
Cut grilling time in half
Cast iron with textured ridges underside leave beautiful grill marks on steak
Ideal for steaks, burgers, and chicken
Measures: 2. 25" x 8. 5" x 8. 25"
The plastic knob may come off after a long time of use.
What to Consider When Buying a Cast Iron Grill Press?
The best weight for cast iron grill presses is between 1 and 3 pounds. Larger presses tend to be heavier. These presses are large enough to flatten most foods without damaging them. When deciding on the weight of the grill press to purchase, consider the type of food you will be using it for. Steaks and other hard meats need a heavier press. However, delicate foods such as fish may break down if they are too heavy. Some lightweight models are portable for camping.
Size and shape
Cast iron grill presses tend to be rectangular, but some are round. A round grill press has the advantage of being able to cook indoors in a cast-iron skillet.
The larger the cast iron grill press is, the more food you can press at once. The standard length for rectangular grill presses is eight inches. Some presses are a little shorter. It is ideal for pressing full-sized bacon strips and can be used with an outdoor or indoor cast iron grill pan.
Before making a purchase, don’t forget to measure the size of the pan to which you intend to use it indoors and outdoors.
Cast iron is the primary material used in a cast-iron grill press. The flat surface of the cast iron grill press is heavy enough to hold food down but evenly distributed. For ease of use, grill presses have a handle. It can be made from cast iron, stainless steel, or wood. It should be strong and durable enough to last for many years.
Appearance & texturing
There are many cast iron grill presses on the market that can be imprinted with decorative handles and designs. Cast iron grill presses can have texture on their underside. This texture can be heated to create grill marks on sandwiches and steaks. This feature can be found on grill presses.
A cast iron grill press that has been seasoned can help protect it against rust, pitting, or other wear and tear. Some presses come pre-seasoned, so you can use them straight out of the box. Others require some seasoning. Although this isn’t a difficult task, it can take over an hour so make sure you have enough time to complete this chore.
Cast iron grill presses should not be washed in a dishwasher. Avoid soaking cast iron. To protect the seasoning, wash and scrub with your hand, then rinse it thoroughly and completely dry with a dry cloth or paper towel. The seasoning will be lost if the grill press is exposed to detergents or soaps. Never leave a cast-iron press air dry, otherwise, it will get rust.
Cast iron grill presses have a handle that prevents you from getting burned. The handle should be comfortable to hold and secure to the grill press. Even when heated, the handle should be cool to the touch. Although most handles are made from wood, some can be made of coiled stainless steel, which is an attractive option.
The handle is attached to your press. Some handles are part of the cast iron grill presses, but most are attached separately, often with bolts or screws. These should be checked and adjusted as needed.
How Much Do Cast Iron Grill Presses Cost?
The prices of cast iron grill presses range from $10 to $30 with an average cost of $15. The larger and heavier the cast-iron grill presses, the higher the price. The lower-priced models will have simpler designs and lighter presses. The quality and build of the presses at the higher end are superior and they have more appealing designs.
You should know how many barbecues presses you will need so that you can save significant money by buying in bulk from a seller. Some may come with other grill accessories, such as cheese melting dome, cooking tongs, etc.
Q. What is the purpose of a cast iron grill press?
A. The cast iron grill press is used to press down the grill cooking food to increase heat contact and ensure even heat distribution. This can reduce cooking time and remove fat from some kinds of meat, reducing grease splashing. A press with raised strips, or other patterns on the bottom can sear steaks and create grill lines. Also, it works well on paninis and other grilled sandwiches.
Q. Can I use a cast iron grill press in the oven?
A. Yes. As long as your press has a metal handle, you can use it in the oven. If the handle is wooden, it will burn and smoke. Make sure to remove the wooden handle before putting the press in the oven.
Q. How can I season a cast-iron grill press?
A. Seasoning the grill press is an effective way to prevent it from getting rust and stick in use. If the press you bought is not pre-seasoned, you will need to season it yourself before using it. It is easy and can be completed within an hour and a half.
You can follow these steps to season your press:
- Season cast iron with an oil that has a high smoking point such as grapeseed oil, peanut oil, or canola oil.
Handwash the press and towel dry it.
- Coat the press with oil with a high smoke point, such as grapeseed oil, peanut oil, or canola oil. You can use a paper towel to wipe the oil evenly around the grill.
- Place the cast iron in the oven at 320 degrees for 15 minutes, or heat it in a cast-iron skillet for about 20 minutes on medium heat.
Make sure to remove any wooden handle before placing it in the oven. Pay attention to the high heat.
- Then take out the press and re-coat oil and place the press back in the oven or skillet for another round.
- Let the press cool down, then remove the oil with a towel paper, or dry cloth.
Seasoning twice or three times before use can ensure the best effect.
Avoid using soap and detergent to wash the cast iron grill press, because it will wash away the seasoning.
Hand wash, rinse and towel dry the press, never leave any cast iron to air dry. Therefore, you will never have a rust issue.
Q. How to clean an iron cast grill press?
A. Let the cast iron grill press cool in the pan or on the grill after use. It will still be very hot. Once the press is cool, you can easily remove any bacon or other food stuck to a grill press by rubbing kosher salt onto the press and then wiping it with a damp cloth. This will remove food particles from the grill press without affecting the seasoning. Then towel dries the press, oil it if necessary, and store it in a dry place.