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If you’re tired of constantly cleaning your grill grates or watching food fall in between the grates, it may be in your best interests to seek out a grill mat. Not only is this grilling accessory known for making cleanup much easier, but it also affords you the option to cook smaller foods without skewering them or worrying that they might fall into the fire. The kind of grill you have, what sorts of foods you’re looking to cook on it, and how often you use it will all be factors to consider when purchasing a grill mat.
They’re affordable, easy to store, and can prove to be quite convenient during the summer months. They come in different sizes and materials, so understanding which grill will work for your specific needs is important.
If you’re ready to invest in this fun grilling accessory for all of your outdoor cooking, here are the best grill mats to consider.
Best Overall: Kona Best BBQ Grill Mat
Safe up to 600°F
Thicker than most mats
Large—would need to be cut down for small grills
One of the biggest variances between grill mats is their thickness, and the thickness of this grill mat is super heavy duty. Comparatively, this mat is anywhere between 2-4 times thicker than other mats, which makes it much more durable and allows you to use it more frequently. The thicker material also allows for it to be safe up to 600 degrees Fahrenheit. Reviewers love how easy it is to clean these mats and how frequently they’re able to use them without the quality degrading.
Material: PTFE fiberglass cloth | Dimensions: 16 x 13 x 0.1 inches
Best Copper: Aoocan Copper Grill Mat
Copper looks nice and it’s easier to spot dirt
Great for even cooking
Not only is the fresh copper color of these mats a nice design choice, but the lighter color makes it easier for you to see your food on the mats and determine how browned they are (in comparison to a black mat). They’re also a bit easier to clean than a black mat because it’s much easier to identify any stuck-on food bits. Reviewers love how evenly these mats distribute heat as well as the fact that you’re still able to achieve grill marks on your food without having to place your food directly on the grates.
Material: Fiberglass fabric coated PTFE, copper coat | Dimensions: 15.75 x 13 x .01 inches
Best for High Heat: NST Grill Mats with Holes
Includes 6 mats and an oil brush
Safe up to 600°F
Can’t be used with certain foods
Grill mats with holes are advantageous because they allow for tiny airways where smoke can escape. This also allows for smoke to better reach whatever it is you’re cooking, and some of the fat from meats can drip into the holes, providing tiny flare-ups for added flavor. These mats are safe up to 600 degrees Fahrenheit, and users are impressed by how easy they are to clean—the tiny holes don’t get in the way at all. You can even use this mat as an oven liner or baking mat over a baking sheet. Because of the small holes, you can’t cook some foods that you would be able to on other grill mats, like eggs, pancakes, etc.
Material: PTFE fiberglass-coating | Dimensions: 15.74 x 13 x .02 inches
Best Round: LauKingdom Reusable BBQ Grill Mats
Includes 5 mats
Round shape ideal for circular grills
Only safe up to 500°F
If you have a circular grill, it’s definitely best to seek out a round mat. Even though you can always trim these mats down with scissors, it’s much easier to trim down a circle instead of a rectangle for a circular grill. These 15-inch circles are the perfect starting point for your round-shaped grill. Safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, these mats are a great reusable alternative to parchment paper or foil. Reviewers enjoy fitting these mats to their kamado dome grills and smokers.
Material: PTFE-fiberglass coating | Dimensions: 15 x 15 x 0.01 inches
Best Mesh: Cook Time Grill Mesh Mat
Mesh allows more smoke to penetrate foods
Only safe up to 500°F
Eggs and other foods will run through the mat
If you’re looking for a mesh mat option, this is a great one. By opting for mesh, your food will be much more exposed to the smoke and flame from your grill, but the food will still not come into direct contact with your grill grates, making cleaning up an easy task. These mats are food safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit and they’re dishwasher safe. The mats are totally safe for gas, electric, pellet, and charcoal grills. You cannot cook foods like eggs or pancakes on these mats, though, like you can on the others because of the mesh material and the holes.
Material: PTFE-fiberglass coating | Dimensions: 15.7 x 13 x 0.1 inches
Best Value Set: Dad's Choice Heavy Duty Grill Mats
Includes black, copper, and mesh mat
Only safe up to 500°F
If you’re having trouble deciding which mat you want to go for and you want to give a few different versions a try, this set is a great way to try out multiple versions. It includes a basic mat, a copper mat, and a mesh mat, so you can sample them all and decide which you prefer. At under $15, this is a great deal for what you’re getting, especially if you’ve never tried grilling with a mat and are feeling indecisive. These mats are dishwasher safe so you have nothing to worry about when it comes time to cleanup. They’re safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit and this variety pack would make for a great gift, especially for a young or novice griller.
Material: PTFE-fiberglass coating | Dimensions: 15.75 x 13 inches
Best Extra Wide: BBQ Dragon Premium Nonstick Grill Mats
Extra wide for added coverage
Can be cut into smaller pieces
Not dishwasher safe
These Teflon mats are on the thinner side, which some cooks prefer because you can get some more intense flavors from the charcoal and smoke. The nonstick surface is ideal for everything from steaks, veggies, and fish to eggs and bacon. The recommended care for these black mats is warm, soapy water, so it’s probably best to avoid cleaning them in the dishwasher. These sheets can also double as an oven liner or baking sheet.
Material: PTFE-fiberglass coating | Dimensions: 15.7x 13 x 0.08 inches
Best for Fish: Grillaholics Grill Mats, Set of 2
Only heat safe up to 500°F
For a super flat, level, and nonstick mat, this Grillaholics model is a fan favorite. If you cook a lot of delicate foods on your grill, like fish, this mat is a great way to ensure that you don’t run into any sticking issues. It’s thick and sturdy enough to protect the fish from any intense flavors but will still allow for that signature grilled flavor. Users love the option to cook smaller foods, like crumbled sausage, eggs, and veggies. These mats fall on the slightly pricier side, but for such great quality, they do warrant a few extra dollars.
Material: PTFE-fiberglass coating | Dimensions: 15.75 x 13 x 0.01 inches
What to Look for in Grill Mats
It’s definitely important to measure the size of your grilling area before buying a mat to ensure that the mat will fit without any cumbersome overhang. Though you can always cut your grill mat once you have it to fit the size and shape of your grill, it’s definitely easier to start with a mat that’s in the ballpark of your grill. If you have a circular grill, like a kamado, it will certainly be helpful to buy a circular mat. Instead of buying a huge mat for a small grill, save your money and opt for something tinier.
It’s important to know the highest temperature that your grill mat can withstand. Most mats are safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, but you should double-check before purchasing. If the temperature capacity is anything lower than 500 degrees Fahrenheit, you run the risk of your mat melting or potentially being degraded during usage. If you want a mat that can withstand hotter temperatures, you’ll likely need to opt for a thicker mat. All grill mats are made of heavy-duty PTFE, a non-stick coated fabric, but the thickness of these mats vary, which directly indicates how high of temperatures they can withstand.
Grill mats are made from a PTFE-fiberglass cloth, but they can be coated in copper, which is great for even grilling and also makes it easier to see the food than with a solid black mat. You can also find mesh PTFE-fiberglass cloth or mats with holes, which allow more smoke to get through to the food.
The price range for grill mats is pretty narrow—you’ll likely spend anywhere from $10 to $25, so you don’t need to worry about a huge price difference between separate models. That said, you’re much better off opting for a higher quality mat with a thicker design that can withstand high temperatures, especially because a higher quality mat is not much more expensive than a basic one.
Are grill mats safe?
When used properly, grill mats are completely safe. One thing to note is that the composition of these mats is similar to Teflon pans in the sense that if they’re damaged or scratched, they could potentially leach harmful chemicals into your food. That said, you should take proper care of your grill mat (never use metal utensils on it) and if you notice that it is torn or heavily scratched, it’s probably time to replace the mat.
How do you clean a grill mat?
To clean your grill mat, start by rinsing and soaking it in warm, soapy water. If there is any stubborn food debris, you can also use the soft side of a scrub pad to loosen up the food. Never use any scratchy metal objects to clean these mats, as it will damage the nonstick coating and could potentially ruin the mat. Some grill mats are dishwasher safe, so check to see if yours is and run it through your dishwasher accordingly.
How do you use a grill mat?
To use your grill mat, lay the mat down directly onto your preheated grill grates. Using a grill mat will prevent you from needing to clean your grates after grilling and you don’t have to use as much oil on your food to grill. By using the grill mat, you also don’t need to worry about smaller food items falling between the grates. Instead of skewering veggies, you can just throw them directly on the mat, and if you want to prepare breakfast items like eggs, pancakes, or French toast over the grill, now you can. When you’re done using the grill mat, let it cool down before removing and cleaning.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
Sara Tane has written nearly a dozen buying guides for The Spruce Eats, understanding what consumers and cooks need to consider before making a new purchase for their outdoor culinary adventures. She is a professionally trained chef in addition to an outdoor cooking enthusiast. With many weekends of cooking elaborate, delicious meals outside on a grill, she is no stranger to what it takes to have a successful bout of grilling. After researching different grill mats and their materials, she can help you find the best model for your grilling lifestyle.