How to Clean a Pancake Griddle and Make It Shiny!

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Pancakes are the best breakfast items in the world, and nothing will change my mind.

Think about it. They are soft and fluffy, and can be made as healthy or as indulgent as you want. 

There are sugarless banana pancakes you can load with fruit. You can make thick pancakes and smother them with whipped cream, chocolate shavings, and maple syrup.

But to make perfect pancakes, you need a pancake griddle. And you must know how to clean a pancake griddle. These cooking tools make even-shaped, fluffy pancakes and allow you to make huge batches in one go.

They are also good for toasting sandwiches, frying eggs, making French toast, and even stir-frying (if you’re out of options).

So if you have a funky-looking pancake griddle, follow these steps to clean it right up.

What You Need to Clean Your Pancake Griddle Pan

Before we begin, you need to understand that there are two sorts of pancake griddles available. This is because stovetop pancake griddles and an electric pancake skillet function differently. 

A plug in pancake griddle should never be immersed in water or cleaned under running water.

With all that being said, these are the things you need to clean your pancake griddle.

  • Soft dishcloth/sponge
  • Paper towel
  • Mild dish detergent
  • Lukewarm water
  • Spatula
  • Heat resistant gloves

How to Clean a Pancake Griddle

how to clean a pancake griddle

These steps will show how to safely and effectively clean both electric and stovetop pancake griddle pans. Here’s what you need to do:

Step 1: Heat Things Up

Heat up your pancake griddle. Before we begin cleaning, you need a hot griddle as this will make it easier to get rid of grease and burnt bits of batter.

Step 2: Get Rid of the Debris

To get rid of burnt and hardened food scraps, use a flat-headed spatula to scrape off the debris while the griddle is hot. For better cleaning, scrape back and forth gently without scratching the surface. Then sweep all the crumbs out of the griddle.

Step 3: Start Washing the Griddle

While the pan is still hot, add a little water to the surface, and a few drops of dish soap. Bring the water on the griddle to a boil─ this will loosen up grease and bits of burnt batter stuck onto the surface. You can repeat this step as needed.

Step 4: Finish Up

To get rid of any remaining water and soapy residue, fold up a paper napkin and use it to soak up all the liquid in the griddle. Use your spatula to sweep the napkin around the pan. Keep doing this until the pan is dry with no soap or water.

Step 5: Drying Your Griddle

If your pancake griddle pan is still a little damp, you can use a kitchen towel (or more paper napkins) to wipe it dry. Or, you can just let it air dry.

For the last 2 steps, make sure your griddle is off the heat. If you have a non-stick pancake griddle, try not to use a metal spatula, and use a wooden spoon or silicone spatula instead.

Cleaning Tips for Your Pancake Griddle

electric pancake skillet

Want to prevent a buildup of grease and nastiness on your pancake griddle? These maintenance tips will show you how regular care can keep your flat pan for pancakes in better shape.

  • Wipe down your griddle after each use. A damp paper napkin is the best way to prevent grease from building up. 

    This is a great option for nonstick and ceramic pancake pan griddles, like the Oster pancake griddle. Remember to let your griddle cool down mostly first.
  • Scrape off burnt bits as soon as possible. Don’t let the bits of burnt pancakes and grease stick to your pan. Instead, use a scraper or spatula to remove debris while the pan is still hot after cooking.
  • If you have a stovetop griddle, you can also rinse it under a tap while still hot, which will loosen the caked-on residue. [This is not applicable for electric pancake griddles.]
  • If you have a cast iron griddle, season it frequently and wipe it down with a damp dish towel after every use.
  • Once your griddles have dried completely after cleaning, spritz an even layer of cooking spray to prevent bits of food from sticking to it.
  • When using your griddle to make things like hash browns or omelets, don’t cook things at very high temperatures, as this will encourage burning and build up.
  • To help cut through lots of greases and to remove caked-on food, you can also spray the griddle with white vinegar, before adding the soap and water.

Got More Questions?

Below you’ll find answers to questions we get asked the most about cleaning pancake griddles.

01. How Do I Get Rid of Burnt Food from My Pancake Griddle?

Dilute some vinegar with a little water. Heat up the griddle, add your vinegar, and allow it to boil for 10 minutes. 

Then add a tablespoon of baking soda, which will react with the vinegar and form bubbles, loosening the bits of burnt food and stains. Cream of Tartar will also work instead of baking soda.

02. How Should I Clean My Griddle for the First Time?

Before using your stovetop pancake griddle for the first time, wash it in hot, soapy water. This is the only time you should actively wash the griddle. Rinse off until there’s no soap or residue and dry completely with paper towels.

03. What is the Best Oil to Cook with on a Griddle?

Always use an oil with a high smoke point on your pancake griddle to prevent greasy buildup and burn marks. This includes vegetables, sunflower seed, and canola oil.

04. How Should I Prevent My Pancakes from Sticking to My Griddle?

  • Try to get a nonstick pancake griddle.
  • Use a paper towel to evenly grease the surface of the griddle with a little oil or clarified butter.
  • Use cooking spray to spritz a thin and even layer of grease that will act as a barrier between the cooking surface and pancake batter.

05. Can I Use Apple Cider Vinegar on My Pancake Griddle?

Apple cider vinegar gets rid of built-up grease and burned food just like white vinegar, but it has a stronger smell that may linger around in your griddle.

To Finish Off

Griddles are awesome because you can make a whole host of breakfast dishes on them besides pancakes. But just like any other super-useful kitchen tool, they tend to get dirty fast.

Knowing how to clean a pancake griddle will make sure you don’t have to go out and buy a new one every 6 months. So bust out your spatula, find yourself some dish soap and paper napkins, and get to work on your pancake griddle! 

You’ll be thanking me at breakfast.

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