Things We Love – Blackstone Griddle
One of the main things we were excited about when we first started out on the road was the idea that we could be outside more, cooking and relaxing by a fire, and just enjoying all the things that campground life had to offer. So early on, I was eyeballing grills and I told Yvette, as long as it has fire underneath the food – THAT is what I wanted.
I’ve long been a fan of grills, and my trusty Char-Broil infrared grill has seen many fires. And there are a metric ton of portable grills on the market, including popular ones like the Weber Q 1200 and the Coleman Roadtrip. So consider me skeptical when she suggested we look into a Blackstone Griddle. You’re telling me the fire is blocked completely by a pan?! So the fire doesn’t touch the food?! What kind of grilling blasphemy is this?!
In order to be a good husband and show her I was listening to her crazy idea, I dug into Youtube and various blogs and quickly realized I was VERY late to the game on griddles in general, and the Blackstones specifically. (Yeah, she’s right more often than I like to admit.) Here were all these people griddling everything from steaks to burgers to fish and veggies – breakfast, lunch and dinner – there was nothing the Blackstone couldn’t handle. And for us, the 17″ version stored perfectly on our outdoor kitchen countertop and at $79, I was willing to take the chance.
Now – please don’t mistake this as a commercial for Blackstone. Outside of hoping for a little bit of that Amazon affiliate juice, I have no connection to Blackstone at all, and won’t benefit in any other way from this.
With that said, I can without question say that the Blackstone is hands down one of the best purchases I’ve made in the last year. I constantly rave about it, and have convinced friends and relatives alike to get one.
Here are my favorite things about it:
- I can seriously cook almost anything on it. I’ve made everything from pancakes to tacos, fried rice, bacon, eggs, burgers and salmon on it. It handled all of it with ease.
- Speaking of pancakes and bacon – Pancakes are a breeze and take almost zero effort. We’ve instituted pancake Sundays as an official Bowling family weekly holiday, and it’s the best. And bacon…I will never cook bacon another way if I can help it ever again. It’s too easy. No muss no fuss. It’s all outside, keeps the splatter and smoke/smells outside, and cooks crispy bacon so easily. (Have I said easy enough?)
- A little hack – I converted it to the quick connect on the outside of our camper, which utilizes the camper’s built in low flow system and regulator. I bought a hose from Amazon and an adapter from Propane Gear, and I was in business. No need for an extra tank!
Here’s some room for improvement:
- Heat loss on windy days. This is my biggest gripe with the Blackstone. (Although to be fair, grilling in general can be tricky on windy days.) The griddle sitting on top of the heat source, at least on my 17″ version, has openings all around where heat can escape – and it does struggle to maintain consistent heat when the wind is blowing. I’ve seen some good hacks on this, and I plan to try them, but it does require me to modify things I’d rather not have to. I’ll update this soon.
- Heat consistency on the griddle surface in general. This is actually a pro and a con. Over time, I’ve really discovered some of the hot/warm/cool sections on my griddle. This can make foods in certain places on the griddle not cook as quickly or as consistently as others. That said, I’ve also used this to my advantage in allowing certain things to cook, while I push other ingredients to the side for keeping warm and mixing in later.
- The grease tray. I’m not sure what they can really do about this, but the 17″ version’s grease tray is a bit of a mess. Maybe that’s just part of it…but grease getting stuck underneath the hole and spreading out means the entire tray is messy at times and hard to get clean.
In conclusion, we can’t say enough about the Blackstone, and wouldn’t hesitate to get another (or a bigger one if we’re in a sticks and bricks someday). It’s something we use almost every day, and we really just want to share more of the things that we love and use regularly, as well as hacks we’ve learned while out on the road. Hopefully it’ll give you some ideas – and you can give us some recipes!