It is fun to grill on a Kamado Joe grill, but you have to clean it when done, and this guide is all about how to clean a kamado joe grill.
This beginner-friendly guide covers everything on how to clean a Kamado grill, and if you own a Kamado Joe, then this is a must-read.
Kamado Joe grills are heavy, so it is only right that you know how to clean a Kamado Joe Grill thoroughly and how frequently you should clean a Kamado Joe grill.
Kamado grills are made mostly of ceramics meaning they weigh a lot, and some people might be afraid of purchasing one because they do not know how to properly clean them.
Well, lucky you because this post will talk about all the steps you will need to take to eliminate all the common dirt associated with Kamado Joe Grills.
People thought that ceramics were more durable, so more and more companies are creating versions of a Kamado-style grill, originated in China.
In this post, we are specifically talking about Kamado Joe grills and these cleaning tips work for any Kamado Joe grill.
Choosing a Kamado Joe grill is a task in itself but once you choose the right grill for yourself, keeping it clean so that it lasts long is important.
They have features unlike any other, so you will need specific instructions on how to clean them.
Nonetheless, it is not that much of a hassle, and you will eventually realize that it is a necessity.
So without further ado, here are the different steps on how to clean different kinds of dirt from your Kamado Joe Grill.
how to remove ashes from kamado grill
Cleaning ashes in the Kamado grill is a simple issue, but if left unattended, it might cause more problems.
We are talking about the ash from your firebox gathered when you are cooking in the Kamado Joe.
Ash is not that big of a problem, but it does pack some inconvenience you will need to get rid of.
This way, the Kamado Joe will function the way it is supposed to.
Every time you use your Kamado Joe, there will be an ash build-up at the bottom of the firebox that might seem harmless at first, but if it is too much, there will be some issues.
You see, the firebox is not merely a firebox.
It is the intake of the grill for air to heat up and reach the desired temperature to cook your food.
Now, ash build-up clogs the small holes in the firebox where the air is supposed to enter.
I recommend that you do remove ashes from the Kamado grill every time you finish cooking.
How to clean a KAMADO JOE GRILL
Step 1. First, let your Kamado Joe cool down after cooking.
Do not start the cleaning process unless the heat has died down to prevent accidents.
Step 2. After the grill has cooled down, open it and then, using a rod, stir the firebox and try to remove as much ash as you can and let it fall in the vent.
Take note that Kamado Joes have their ashtray at the bottom vent so you can let the ash fall from the firebox, and it will go straight to the ashtray.
Step 3. Then, place a bucket right under the draft door as it will be the outlet of the ashtray inside.
This way, you will avoid spilling ash from the draft door.
Step 4. Remove the ashtray and then empty the ash in a garbage can.
Clean the ashtray and then put it back in the draft door.
If you are still not satisfied with this process, you can pull out your shop vac and gather all the remaining ashes from the firebox to have a clear path for the airflow.
You see, there is nothing hard about removing the ashes from your Kamado Joe.
So we recommend that you do it after every cooking session.
However, that is the simplest way to clean a Kamado Joe, and we are about to step into the harder-to-clean residuals, so keep on reading to see the next one.
How to get rid of mold in Kamado Joe
This is for the unlucky event that your Kamado Joe gathered some molds, but cleaning Kamado Grill is easy.
This does not usually happen, and molds will only occur if you have not used the grill for a long time.
Molds grow in dark places where they build up from moisture and lack of air.
The accumulation of molds usually happens during the winter months where the Kamado Joe is in storage.
Mold build-up is not that big of an issue as it will not destroy your Kamado Joe, but it begins to be a problem when it builds up inside the grill itself and into the ceramics and the grates of the grill.
Not to worry, this is also easy to clean, and the job will not be solely on you.
See, the Kamado Joes have a self-cleaning feature that will help you get rid of molds.
So here are the steps:
Step 1. Get all the grill parts, including the grates, the heat deflectors, and all the ceramic parts, into the grill.
Step 2. Load the firebox with a decent amount of charcoal.
Enough to last for at least an hour of continuous heating.
Step 3. Fire up the grill and let it reach 500 to 600 degrees Fahrenheit.
Do this while the vent and the draft door are open to gather the air needed to heat up.
Try not to go any higher than this temperature as it may break the ceramics of the Kamado Joe.
Step 4. Once you have reached the desired temperature, wait for 15 to 20 minutes and then close the draft door or the bottom vent, so no air gets in.
Step 5. Wait for another 15 to 20 minutes before closing the top vent to lock all the heat inside the grill, and then let it cool down.
Step 6. Once the grill has cools down, grab a brush and clean the grates and ceramics with it.
Never use chemicals while cleaning the inside of the Kamado Joe to maintain its integrity.
Also, do not use water as it may cause thermal shock to the ceramics.
This method is called Pyrolyzing, and it is the process of burning up the residuals inside the grill so they can be easily brushed away without the help of any chemicals or water.
Pyrolyzing is the best way to clean a Kamado grill.
This way, your food will always taste great without the taste of any chemical, and the ceramics will be safe from thermal shock.
Cleaning the Heat Deflector
Like any Kamado-style grill, Kamado Joe grills have a heat deflector to keep the flames from burning your food before it cooks properly.
These heat deflectors are responsible for creating a convection heat that will cook your food and produce the smoke from the charcoal below.
Often, these heat deflectors get dirty since they come into contact with the charcoal as well as the grease and other drippings from your food.
That is why it is important to clean them once in a while.
The Kamado Joe has a unique and innovative heat deflector unlike any other called the SloRoller Hyperbolic Insert.
It has Teflon-coated cast aluminum, so it is highly durable.
You can clean them while the Kamado grill is in the self-cleaning mode, where you heat the grill for about 30 minutes at 500 degrees Fahrenheit.
How to clean Kamado Joe Kontrol Tower
Cleaning Kamado Joe Kontrol Tower is a task, and most of the places do not tell us how one can effectively clean it.
I find a degreaser, the most effective thing that has helped me clean Kamado Joe Kontrol Tower.
When the grease on the Kamado Joe Kontrol Tower cools down, it locks the tower in place, which is annoying.
You need to clean it once in a while, and finally, I discovered how to clean Kamado Joe Kontrol tower, effectively removing all that grease and gunk from the inside.
Take a wet cloth with a little bit of degreaser on it and clean the top and the bottom surface of the Kontrol tower, which has a lot of greases.
To remove any degreaser residue, you can heat the kamado grill at 500 degrees Fahrenheit for an hour.
This way, the grill internally cleans itself, and at the same time, you get rid of any leftover degreaser chemicals on the Kontrol tower.
How to clean the grill grates of Kamado Grill
Many people would recommend inserting the grill inside the Kamado grill while pyrolyzing so that the residue on the grill can burn off on its own.
And I recommend doing the same, but I always clean the grill grates with a little bit of water, and if there is something sticky stuck to them, I soak them in warm water and clean them.
This is not something I always do, but it does help at times.
You can then dry the grates and insert them inside the Kamado grill for the pyrolyzing process.
It is the best way to clean grill grates of a Kamado grill, and I find it super helpful.
How often to clean a Kamado Grill
A valid question that comes to every grill owner’s mind is that how often to clean a kamado grill, do you clean it after every grill session or do you clean it once a month.
Well, the answer depends on how thoroughly you want to clean your kamado grill.
If you just clean it using a brush and a dry cloth then you can do it after every grill session.
The deep cleaning depends on how often you use your kamado grill. If you grill a lot then once two weeks or if you rarely grill on your Kamado Joe then maybe once a month.
If I grill every day on Kamado Joe then I would deep clean once every week or every other week but since I do not cook on it often, I go for once a month.
Step 1. You can do the pyrolyzing technique to get rid of the food residuals from the SloRoller. So fire up the grill and let it heat up with the SLoRoller inside it.
Step 2. Then let the grill cool down and take the SloRoller out.
Step 3. Simply brush away the residuals, and you are good to go. Do not use soap, and there is no need to get rid of the grease.
The grease will condition the SloRoller and make it more durable after using the grease on it.
Even though I have mentioned it a few times, it is worth reminding that when cleaning any Kamado-style grill, never use water or any chemicals.
Even when you are cleaning the pizza stone and the grates, all you need is to pyrolyze.
Although there are times, I like to clean my grill grates with water or a damp cloth.
Many users do not like it, but it depends on how you want to do it.
The heat that the Kamado Joe grills exert is enough for the residuals to burn away.
So, once I clean my grill grates and the Kontrol tower, I heat the Kamado grill for about 30 minutes to an hour for self-cleaning.
This way, you will not risk having your grill destroyed or adding unnecessary and unwanted taste to your food.
Keep the grill open.
When storing the Kamado Joe grill in a dark room during the cold months, leave the draft door and the vent a little bit open for air to get in and out of the grill freely.
This way, you will lessen the risk of accumulating molds inside the grill.
Kamado Joe grills are very amazing, and cleaning them is super easy and fun.
They contain a lot of features that cannot be found in any other Kamado-style grills and are very durable.
They can cook a lot of recipes, that is why you need to take good care of them.
If taken care of properly, Kamado Joe grills can last a lifetime, and you can pass them down from generation to generation.
It is not that hard to clean a Kamado Joe grill, especially when it has a self-cleaning capability to help you lighten up the work.
Just follow the steps above, and you will have a clean Kamado Joe in just those simple steps.
Do it regularly to keep the Kamado Joe grill in shape and maintain its peak performance.
I think I made this guide on how to clean a Kamado grill as informative as possible, but if you have anything to add, leave them in the comments below!
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