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Jan 11, 2006 09:22 AM

Have You Seen a Panini Press/Foreman Type Grill - Without Non-Stick?

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I have a George Foreman tabletop electric grill with non-stick surface. It does an excellent job for sausages, grilled sandwiches and such. But I've noticed that the nonstick surface has begun to have small flakes and tiny blisters. Has anyone seen something that would be similar, like a panini press, that does not have the nonstick coating? If so, please include where you've seen it sold.

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  1. Never occurred to me to use the Foreman grill as a panini press. Any particular tricks to getting a good, crusty exterior?

    4 Replies
    1. re: Dordogne

      I use the George Foreman grill as a "panini" press as well. I've learned a couple tricks:
      - Preheat the grill really hot before putting sandwich on.
      - Elevate the front legs of the Foreman grill so that the grill is level, so your sandwich doesn't slide forward (not crucial; just something that annoys me). Actually, I place my Forenman "just so" on my gas stovetop "racks" to lower the back legs.
      - After you get nice grill marks, shift your sandwich just barely to the right to get the 'non-grilled" stripes grilled (again, not crucial).

      The above is the anal way. You can just use the Foreman the normal way to get "panini".

      1. re: Alice Patis

        You also have to push down on the Foreman when you first put your sandwich in, there isn't enough weight in the top section of the grill to adequately press the sandwich.

        I wouldn't recommend trying to make a pure grilled cheese in it unless you prop up the front legs. The sloped surface is a sure fire way to make sure all your cheese oozes out from your sandwich.

        1. re: Evan

          The only time cheese ever "runs" in mine is if I leave it too long. 4 minutes grills a grilled cheese sand. perfectly. BUT IF you ignore that beep! the cheese WILL run. Try yours for 4 minutes and remove the sand. immediately.

          I do think it's a fine little product. But since they started making them with detachable plates that you couls soak and put in the DW there is no reason for the no stick.

          Sounds like nobody's seen one without the non-stick...
          Any ideas what food equipment manufacturer might know of such a product?

      2. re: Dordogne

        No muss-no fuss. Foreman's excells at panini - does a great job. I highly recommend my own fave sand. - fresh mozz., prosciutto, arugula and evoo.
        The thing is probably 2 years old and I noticed the non-stick coating was slightly blistered with tiny flakes in one spot a few weeks ago. It cost about $50.
        It also makes the best sausages when you boil them for about 5 minutes to remove some fat and then grill in the Foreman for another 5 - 6 minutes.

      3. If you are just making panini's, you can cover the surface with foil before preheating it. Thats what most delis I've seen too to make clean up easy. i wouldn't do that to cook anything besides sandwiches though.

        1. I have never bothered with a Foreman thing. A cast iron grill pan will become non-stick with seasoning and use. I have one from Le Creuset which covers two burners and is reversible to become a griddle. The grill grids make great crispy sandwiches. If you want it pressed get a brick wrap it in foil and pop on top. The grill/griddle is only about 1/2" and easy to store with my 1/2 sheet pans and cutting boards.No heating element to burn out. No flaking non-stick surface and it is a snap to clean

          2 Replies
          1. re: Candy

            I hear you and will obey...already have a Lodge cast iron top-o-the-stove, covers 2 burners, grill reverses to griddle - and will use it for all my panini-esque lunch and dinner items as soon as I can find a brick...

            BUT when I get up at 5:45 a.m. every day to make my husband's breakfast - (he's nothing if not a creature of habit)- required is a no-fat cheese whole grain bread grilled cheese sandwich, that Foreman grill PRODUCES with but 2 taps of the finger and I GO BACK TO BED. I don't want to even think about it - so to make a long story a little shorter...I still need a Foreman type thingie (or panini grill) that I can toss that sandwich into, press a button - and leave the room - it beeps when it's done and he goes to get it. But one with just plain metal plates that don't have the nasty teflon that eventually starts flaking (into the food).

            1. re: Niki Rothman

              OMG If my husband wanted me to get up every day at 5:45am to make him a sandwich, I'd be looking for a new husband instead of a new grill pan!

          2. Did you ever find a non, non-stick panini grill?

            1. ...could you rephrase the question...again? LOL. I just became interested in panini and also interested to know if there are machines that have cast iron or stainless cooking surfaces. I came across this old thread while researching. So far the only machines I have found that match that criteria are commercial panini grills. You can just google "commercial panini grill" or use that same search at Amazon, etc. They are pricey compared with doing it manually with Le Creuset, Lodge cast iron, etc. etc. This is probably old news but I figured I would post in case any other late comers have the same question.