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May 16, 2013 12:15 PM

Electric indoor grill and aluminum foil?

I have a George Foreman type grill that has removable plates. After some heavy use, the non-stick surface has started to peel and flake away, so much so that I've not used the appliance out of fear.

I haven't been able to locate replacement grills and I feel bad just simply throwing out the appliance to buy a new one, when it's still perfectly good to use (except for the removable grills).

Is it feasible/safe to use the grills if I cover them with aluminum foil? I'm not sure of any other solution, but am open to anything you might suggest.

Ideally, I would like to find an indoor electric Forman style grill that has cast iron removable plates, but haven't found anything.

Any suggestions would be most welcome.

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  1. I would definitely not recommend covering those plates with foil. Haven't seen one with cast iron either. I've got a Cuisinart Griddler that I've been really enjoying. I use it quite a lot, so if the grids were to go after a pretty considerable period of time, I'd feel it had served its purpose, like a well-used non-stick pan, chuck it and get a new one.

    1 Reply
    1. re: junescook

      Thank you for reminding me how much I want one of those. Nice to hear you get lots of use out of yours. I would love to have one. :)

    2. There aren't any health risks to eating non-stick coatings, it's the inhalation of certain components of non-stick that MAY cause risk.

      1. Thanks all.

        I really like my indoor grill. Perhaps I should just buy a new one. I just assumed it would be okay to place foil on the grills since I see panini presses covered with foil in cafes.

        Even if there aren't any health risks to eating non-stick coatings, something about knowing that I'm ingesting flakes of non-stick coating freak me out a bit (I know very unscientific).

        Mine is a Hamilton Beach and is quite compact. I've noticed though that the non-stick coating is very different than my dad's George Foreman grill. Mine is dark black, whereas the Foreman grill is grey. Perhaps the non-stick coating on mine is inferior.

        1 Reply
        1. re: daeira

          "I see panini presses covered with foil in cafes."
          I wonder if that's so they can quickly switch between different sandwiches--say first there's a tuna melt, then you'd want to switch and make tomatoes and mozzarella. I can't say we have many cafes around here that make panini, but I'd really think that's a quick way to keep things clean.

          FWIW, I, too, would not be cool with eating non-stick coating flakes, however unscientific. Let's just file under "not delicious." :)

        2. I have the one in the link below. It has cast iron grates and does a great job. Due to not having a vent hood, I use it mainly for panini, but it works for meat as well.

          I like is so much that I started gaining some weight from all the bread I was eating, so I've cut back on it's use; but it works very well. I never had one of the lightweight types, but I'm guessing you have to hold the top down to get the right pressure. The top on this one is heavy enough that you don't need to do that.

          3 Replies
          1. re: ATL_Brad

            Holy smokes, that is SERIOUS business!

            1. re: ATL_Brad

              Wow, that's a heavy duty press. I like that it has cast iron grates, but definitely don't have the space in my tiny galley kitchen for something.

              I'm just so surprised that companies haven't considered that potential customers may want cast iron presses instead of the non-stick variety.

              1. re: daeira

                The nonstick grids are probably aluminum. That conducts heat much better than iron. So the plates can be thinner, lighter, and the heating elements more spread out than with iron ones. So if the target price is under $50 nonstick aluminum is the way to go. If your market is happy with $300 or even $3000 then iron will work.

              1. re: paulj

                Looks like aluminum foil is doable. I'm just not sure how effective my machine would be anymore because the grooves of the grill are very deep compared to the more shallow grooves on the Foreman grill.