At Heatlie Barbecues, we offer both mild steel and stainless steel barbecue hotplates for our Island Gourmet Elite and BBQ ranges. Both materials have different benefits and it can be hard to choose between them. This guide serves to help you differentiate between the two types and help you make the best choice when purchasing your Heatlie Barbecue.
BBQ Hotplate Materials
Firstly, it is worth noting that both the mild steel and stainless steel BBQ hotplates are obviously food-safe and will aid you in entertaining your friends and family for decades. The common misconception that either type of metal will 'leech' into your food is incorrect. There is no transfer of chemicals or metallic particles into your food.
If you notice a black flaky substance that is sticking to your food, this is purely dried up seasoning that is baked onto your plate. To avoid this, give your plate a scrape and re-season.
The hotplate that we recommend in most cases is mild steel, otherwise known as carbon steel, as it is the best for conducting heat evenly and provides the best surface for cooking. The heat conduction quality of the hotplate allows it to respond quickly to changes made to the temperature controls. This will allow you to be in control and perfectly sear your steak.
One of the benefits of the mild steel manufacturing process is the toughness of the material. Hotplates made of mild steel can withstand a lot of pressure and use, providing you with tasty results for decades. This costs less than the stainless steel option and produces better results. Overall, if you’re after a high level of cooking satisfaction then this is the option for you.
The stainless steel that we use to manufacture our BBQs is different to the stainless steel that you would find in your sinks and kitchen appliances. This difference allows for the barbecue to be kept outdoors and the hotplate to retain heat efficiently enough. This hotplate option is recommended if you are planning to use your BBQ near the sea or in an area susceptible to rust due to the natural rust resistance that stainless steel provides. however, please remember that it is rust-resistant, not rust proof. Evens stainless steel, if not cared for, can corrode and rust in poor conditions.
Similar to the mild steel option, stainless steel is equally tough and will become your favourite cooking companion if you maintain it well. To maintain the hotplate, simply clean after use (and remember to season it after cleaning).
We offer three thicknesses for hot plates – 5mm, 10mm and 20mm. Each size has a different purpose. The 5mm is sufficient for home cooking, however if you plan on having the BBQ turned on for large periods of time, for commercial cooking purposes, we do recommend the 10mm thickness. The 20mm size is made for teppanyaki and other commercial applications and is not available on our website. Please contact us for more information on this.
Which BBQ Hotplate Should I Choose?
Whilst we do recommend the mild steel hotplate as the best option, we can guarantee you will have an enjoyable experience with whatever you choose. It all depends on your personal cooking and cleaning preferences.