Here’s a quick and easy chart to understand grill temperature! This cheat sheet shows what temperature to target for low, medium and high heat.
Firing up the grill and not sure what temperature to target? Here’s a cheat sheet to help you break down what a recipe means when it says, “Preheat a grill to medium heat.” For as much as we grill in the summer, we decided to put together a chart to help you (and us!) remember what temperature to target.
Grill temperature cheat sheet
|Level||Temperature (°F)||What to Cook|
|High heat||450°F to 650°F||Searing steak|
|Medium high heat||375°F to 450°F||Vegetables|
Burgers, poultry, seafood
|Medium heat||350°F to 375°F||BBQ meat and poultry|
|Low heat||300°F to 350°F||Slow cooked meats|
How to check grill temperature: a grill thermometer!
How to check grill temperature? You’ll need a grill thermometer for the task. Most grills have grill thermometers that are built in. Or you can grab a standalone thermometer: they’re cheap and easy to use! Here’s a grill surface thermometer: place it on a rack to monitor the temperature.
What type of grill do you recommend?
There are many different types of grills, and we’ve cooked with almost all of them! Here are some pros and cons to each:
- Charcoal grill. Charcoal grilling has the best flavor! A charcoal grill is very inexpensive. You’ll have to start the fire using a chimney, and it takes about 30 minutes to preheat.
- Gas grill. Gas is quicker and easier to work with, but the flavor is not as good as charcoal. It’s quicker to preheat as well.
- Digital charcoal grill. The grill we own now is a digital charcoal grill: it’s a combination between the flavor of charcoal and the ease of use of gas. Here’s the grill we recommend.
Grilling is one of our favorite ways to cook around here, and we have the recipes to prove it! Here are some of our favorites to try:
- Grilled Vegetables: Corn, Onions, Cauliflower, Broccoli, Portobellos, Mushrooms, Zucchini, Squash, Carrots, Peppers, Avocado, Asparagus, Brussels Sprouts, Romaine, Kale
- Grilled Fish: Salmon, Shrimp
- Grilled Veggie Mains: Tofu, Skewers, Veggie Burger, Nachos
About the Authors
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.