Consumer Reports puts grilling gadgets to the test

Consumer Reports tested three gadgets that aim to make grilling even better.
Wednesday, July 09, 2014
What do metal grates, a pizza box and a robot all have in common? They're all new gadgets promising to make new use of your grill just in time for summer. So how do they work? Consumer Reports has partnered exclusively with 7 On Your Side to find out.

Looking for more from your grill? Consumer Reports tested three gadgets that aim to make grilling even better. First up - GrillGrates - interlocking panels that sit on top of your grill. They promise to help it cook more evenly and keep your food juicy, while reducing flare-ups. Consumer Reports' lab found the GrillGrates did improve evenness with one of the two grills it tested. And although the GrillGrates didn't totally eliminate flare-ups, they did deliver some nice grill marks.

"If your grill is uneven heating and you're maybe even contemplating replacing your grill, this would be a less expensive option to try and they do offer a money back guarantee," said Tara Casaregola, Consumer Reports.

Next up, the $150 Bakerstone Pizza Oven Box for using your grill to make wood-fired-style pizza. After a 30-minute warm up, it turned out delicious pizzas every four minutes.

And finally, the $130 Grillbot. It's a grill-cleaning robot that promises to scrub your grill grates automatically. Consumer Reports let the robot loose on a grill caked with cooked chicken. It is noisy, but after 20 minutes the Grillbot tidied up some of the mess. Still it took a grill brush to clean up the pieces of burnt chicken stuck in between the grates. A grill brush is a faster, less expensive solution, but it's not as fun.

To make grilling fish and vegetables easier, Consumer Reports likes the $17 Master Forge Grill Wok from Lowes. It's good for grilling small batches of food. And if you love ribs, the Brinkman Rib Rack holds a full rack of ribs without taking up too much space. It's about $18 at the Home Depot.

Consumer Reports is published by Consumers Union. Both Consumer Reports and Consumers Union are not-for-profit organizations that accept no advertising. Neither has any commercial relationship with any advertiser or sponsor on this site.

(All Consumer Reports Material Copyright 2014. Consumers Union of U.S. Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.)
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