What is the Difference Between Cast Iron & Stainless Steel Cooking Grids?

When looking for a Napoleon Grill there are many options to choose from when it comes to the perfect barbecue for your lifestyle. One of those choices includes what kind of cooking grids or grates you want to have. We have two options, cast iron and stainless steel. Find out the difference between these two types of BBQ grates and how you can take advantage of their unique properties.


Cast Iron Cooking Grids

Cast iron cooking grates are fantastic for retaining and transferring heat. They produce the best sear marks so you will have sexy looking steaks and perfectly charred chops. This comes with a little extra work, however. Cast iron cooking grids need the same kind of TLC that your favorite cast iron frying pan needs. They need to be kept clean and seasoned regularly. If you can do this, they will last you a long time.




Stainless Steel Cooking Grids

High-quality stainless steel is resilient and durable – that’s why we make our grills from it. Our stainless steel cooking grates are just as durable. These grids require virtually no maintenance other than keeping them clean. However, they don’t heat up like the cast iron grids will, so the sear marks produced aren’t as distinct.




What Is The Difference Between Cast Iron & Stainless Steel Cooking Grids?


Cast Iron Cooking Grids

Stainless Steel Cooking Grids


Best heat retention/transfer

Heat quickly, loses heat fast

Sear Marks

Best sear marks

Less distinct sear marks


Sleek and black, can develop rust spots

Develops a yellow, orange, purple patina after use


High maintenance

Very low maintenance


Need maintenance to remain durable

Very durable


There are pro’s and con’s to both types of cooking grids and the biggest difference between them (besides material) is the amount of maintenance required to keep your grids like new. They both cook differently while giving you the barbecuing experience you deserve. What cooking grids do you have and how do you like them? Share your grilling greatness, your favorite recipes, and your success stories on our social pages like Facebook and Instagram, using the hashtag #NapoleonGrill.

Happy Grilling!