Shopping & Reviews

The Best Grill Tools for Better Backyard Barbecues

They make grilling easy and efficient.

By Laura Denby

Updated on July 27, 2022

Is there anything better on a balmy summer evening than savoring steaks and veggie skewers still sizzling from the grill? We don’t think so either. However, stepping up as grillmaster can be daunting for even the most seasoned home cook. That’s why we recommend curating a workhorse group of grill tools. From tongs long enough to avoid burnt fingertips to spatulas that will keep delicate proteins like fish intact, these accessories are specifically designed to make this intense job more manageable and efficient—so you can spend more time mingling with your guests and less time sweating over the flame.

In an effort to find the best grill tools, we carefully vetted a variety of sets and individual accessories to assemble a list of products that are durable, yet easy to maneuver, so home cooks can feel more confident in front of the barbecue. We also spoke with the chef and host of Yahoo!’s “Grill Next Door” Megan Mitchell to get her expert intel on what to look for when shopping for the best grilling tools. Read on for the best grill tools that are professional-approved favorites. 

Our Top Picks

Best Overall

Material: Brushed stainless steel | Dishwasher-safe: No | Handle Material: Rubber


  • Serrated edges make it easy to scrape up charred bits
  • Heavy-duty fork is perfectly-designed to pick up large cuts of meat
  • Tongs lock for easy, compact storage


  • Must be washed by hand
  • It’s on the pricey side
  • Set doesn’t include a grill brush

Why we chose it: This streamlined set comes with three of the most essential grill tools, all of which boast unique design features like serrated edges, stay-cool grips, and looped handles for maximum efficiency and functionality at the grill. 

Every grillmaster needs a reliable set of tools that are convenient, durable, and easy to use. Featuring a set of tongs, a slotted spatula, and a meat fork, each piece in this set is made from brushed stainless steel, which is meant to resist corrosion and retain shine after repeated use in high heat. The stay-cool handles have a non-slip grip, so home cooks can feel comfortable when flipping greasy burgers or juicy chicken dripping with marinade. The tongs and spatula feature serrated edges, which is helpful when scraping off charred bits of food and offer more precision and control when grabbing slippery pieces of shrimp or vegetables. We love that this set features a sturdy meat fork that makes picking up large cuts like brisket, pork butt, or whole chickens easier and safer. The slotted spatula is designed to flip burgers easily while allowing juices to run through, so nothing slips or slides around on the surface. 

Unlike some extra-large grill tools, this set sits at just the right size. The handles are long enough to keep your hands safe from the heat, but not so long as to make them difficult to control. The non-slip handles feature a textured grip which makes them feel comfortable and secure. The looped handles mean you can hang them when not in use, and the locking tongs make for easier, more compact storage.

Best Value

Material: Stainless steel | Dishwasher-safe: No | Handle Material: Stainless steel


  • This all-inclusive set comes with 20 different tools
  • An added carrying case makes storage easy
  • Looped handles allow the spatula, tongs, and brush to hang from the side of the grill


  • Not dishwasher-safe
  • Handles aren’t as long as some others
  • Handles are stainless steel, so use caution as they may be hot to the touch

Why we chose it: This all-inclusive set from a reliable cookware brand comes with all the essentials at an incredibly affordable price. 

If you’re looking to replace all your grilling tools with one comprehensive set, this kit from Cuisinart is our top choice. The 20-piece set of durable stainless steel tools comes with a spatula, digital temperature fork, basting brush, tongs, five skewers, eight corn holders, and a cleaning brush with a replaceable head, plus a convenient carrying case. That means you’re equipped to flip burgers, skewer shrimp, baste chicken, and easily scrub your grill afterward all at an easy-to-afford price. We particularly love that the convenient carrying case makes storage easy and streamlined. Looped handles mean you can hang the spatula, tongs, and brush from the side of the grill, so they’re easy to grab when needed and easy to put down when you need a break (or a sip of cold beer).

In addition to a standard spatula and tongs, this set also comes with a digital meat fork that displays actual and desired temperatures, along with an alarm that signals when food is done to prevent overcooking. Better yet, the digital meat fork features a built-in LED light for easy nighttime cooking. Overall, this 20-piece set is an easy way to stock your barbecue with every essential item for a reasonable price. Keep in mind that these tools should be hand-washed for best results.

Best Grill Spatula: Oxo Good Grips Grilling Turner

Best Grill Spatula

Material: Stainless steel | Dishwasher-safe: Yes | Handle Material: Silicone


  • The non-slip grip adds safety and comfort
  • A slotted surface lets grease drip through
  • Ergonomically-designed bend makes burgers easier to flip


  • Unlike some other grill spatulas, this option doesn’t have a serrated edge
  • It’s on the heavy side
  • Although sturdy, this spatula isn’t super flexible

Why we chose it: This heavy-duty spatula features a non-slip grip and a thoughtfully-designed bend for added comfort, leverage, and control.

This ergonomic spatula is specifically designed to make flipping burgers safe and effective. Unlike regular spatulas meant for stovetop cooking, the more dramatically bent head of this grill turner sits at the optimal angle to flip heavy foods without putting any extra strain on your wrist. Made from durable stainless steel, it can easily handle high heat, and the extra-long handle keeps fingers and wrists away from the flame for a more comfortable grilling experience. The non-slip grip stays secure in your hand, even when greasy or wet. We love that it’s dishwasher-safe for easy cleaning, and the looped handle makes for a convenient storage option. The slotted surface lets grease and moisture drip through the cracks so you can easily pick up a burger without it sliding around.  Most of all, we love the width of this spatula—it’s narrow enough to maneuver around a crowded grill and wide enough to flip juicy burgers or thick portobello caps.

Best Grill Tongs: Weber Precision Grill Tongs

Best Grill Tongs

Material: Stainless steel | Dishwasher-safe: Yes | Handle Material: Silicone


  • Dishwasher-safe for easy cleaning
  • A looped handle allows for hanging storage
  • It easily locks when not in use for more compact storage


  • On the heavier side
  • The spring can be stiff, so long-term use can be fatiguing
  • The lack of flexibility means they don’t open as wide as some other types of tongs

Why we chose it: A flat front edge makes it easy to grab even the most caked-on foods, and the long handle with a non-slip grip adds comfort and safety.

The best grill accessories should be heavy-duty, durable, sturdy, and comfortable to use. These Weber tongs are strong and powerful, so you can easily pick up a rack of ribs, a shoulder of pork, or a whole chicken with one hand. They’re not just for large cuts—the flat tip makes grasping delicate foods like sliced zucchini or sliced onions easy too.

These stainless steel tongs feature a non-slip grip, which means they’re easy to hold even when greasy or wet. The looped handle means you can hang them from the side of the grill when not in use, which is particularly useful if you’re working with a portable grill and don’t have a side table to rest your tools on. At 18-inches long, they’re considerably longer than normal tongs, so you don’t have to worry about burning your hands. However, keep in mind that they can be on the heavy side. They’re also not as flexible as normal kitchen tongs, so extended use can be fatiguing for small hands. These durable tongs are dishwasher-safe and their hands-free lock allows them to stay compact for easier storage.

Best Grill Brush

Material: Silicone head, stainless steel body | Dishwasher-safe: Yes | Handle Material: Stainless steel


  • Dishwasher-safe for easy cleaning
  • Very affordable
  • BPA-free silicone bristles are heat-resistant


  • No non-slip grip
  • No basting cup
  • Dishwasher-safe, but should be rinsed first

Why we chose it: This set comes with one small and one large grill brush, both of which feature stainless steel bodies and silicone tips so they’re completely heat-safe.

If you’re looking for an easy way to keep meat moist on the grill, a grill brush is an easy way to do it. Unlike a traditional baster, grill brushes offer more precision—the bristles collect sauce and make sure it gets in every crevice—so they’re perfect for expertly basting racks of ribs or stacks of skewers. Just like any grilling tool, grill brushes should be able to withstand high heat, so we love that this set is made from durable stainless steel and BPA-free silicone. The 2-piece set features one 12-inch brush and one 7.5-inch brush. That way, you can use the longer brush to keep your fingers safe when flames are extra hot and use the shorter brush for more precise tasks over lower temperatures. 

The durable handles are heavy-duty yet lightweight, so they’re easy to maneuver around a hot grill. Both brushes are dishwasher-safe and rust-resistant. Be mindful that the handles don’t have a non-slip grip, so they could get slick when wet or greasy.

Best Grill Basket:

Material: Stainless steel | Dishwasher-safe: No | Handle Material: Heat-resistant rubber


  • An extra-long handle makes it easy to grab when on the grill
  • Multiple lock settings allow for different-sized foods
  • A nonstick surface helps charred bits slide off


  • The long arm isn’t collapsible, which can make it tricky to store
  • Foods don’t sit directly on the grill grates, which makes it difficult to get a good char or sear
  • Heavy-duty construction can make it cumbersome to maneuver with one hand

Why we chose it: This nonstick grill basket features different lock settings, which means it can safely house different-sized foods that would otherwise be tricky to grill—use it for fish, shrimp, vegetables, and more.

If you’re a fan of grilled seafood, a grill basket is a must-have. Simply fill the basket with delicate items like shrimp or salmon and lock the mechanism at the appropriate height. The different locking options mean you can accommodate foods of different sizes, so each piece is held together and doesn’t move around. The nonstick wires will keep the food safely in place so nothing falls through the cracks and into the flame. This basket is perfect for kebabs because you can turn the entire thing at once, eliminating the need to rotate each piece individually. The large cooking surface can accommodate ample portions of food in a single layer, so items grill evenly and uniformly.

Though the nonstick surface means foods easily slide off, it also means that this basket is not dishwasher-safe. Before purchasing, keep in mind that it should be washed by hand, which can be tricky due to the size of the cooking surface and the length of the handle. It’s also important to keep in mind that food will not sit directly on the grill grates, which means it will be difficult to achieve uniform grill marks. The handle is made of heat-resistant rubber, so be mindful that only the basket itself should sit directly over an open flame.

How We Chose These Products

In order to find the best grilling tools, we combined our professional culinary knowledge with competitive research and industry insights to find products that are functional, durable, and reliable. We assessed each product’s ability to withstand high heat, and took note of how easy each item is to clean and care for. We relied on our extensive knowledge of cookware brands to determine the quality of each product, and assessed price and any special features to determine overall value. Lastly, we spoke with Megan Mitchell, an L.A.-based chef and host of Grilling for Beginners, a workshop series with Magnolia Network that focuses on the fundamentals of grilling. She has also been featured on Yahoo!’s Grill Next Door, as well as various cooking shows with Tastemade, Thrive Market, ABC, and Food Network Kitchen. Megan gave us her advice on how to shop for grill tools and what factors to look for in a set of tools.

Features to Keep in Mind When Shopping for Grill Tools


When grilling, it’s important to select tools made from materials that can handle high temperatures. “With high heat, you can’t use the same tools on a grill as you do in the kitchen,” said Mitchell. “Wood and plastic can burn and melt and there’s definitely more wear and tear that happens to your grilling tools since you’re using them over an open flame,” she added. Therefore, it’s best to opt for tools made of metal. Stainless steel can withstand heat of up to a whopping 1,700 degrees Fahrenheit, which makes it a great option for grill tools like spatulas and tongs. When it comes to a basting brush, opt for silicone. Silicone can withstand temperatures of up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit, so it’s a great option for basting whole barbecued chickens or racks of ribs.


Mitchell says quality and durability are the most important factors to consider when shopping for grill tools. “Working with high heat, cheap tools, unfortunately, don’t cut it, which means you’ll have to replace them sooner than you’d hope,” she said. Before selecting a set of tools, make sure to assess the material the tools are made from, what temperature they can withstand, and how you plan to clean and care for them. Grill tools are subjected to all sorts of wear and tear, so selecting heavy-duty tools that are easy to clean is key. Keep in mind that some sets are dishwasher-safe while others must be washed by hand, so be sure to use the proper care in order to maintain their effectiveness. Mitchell says that understanding how to care for your tools is the best way to ensure their durability. “Just like you clean your grill before and after every use, I do the same with grill tools, especially since most tools are stored outside by the grill. A quick wash before using and then washing, drying, and putting them away after each use will extend their life and keep them working properly,” she said.

What's Included

If you’re looking to replace all of your grill tools in one purchase, a comprehensive set is the best way to go. At the minimum, every set of grill tools should include long tongs for grilling chicken and vegetables, as well as a long, wide spatula for flipping burgers. A meat fork is ideal for flipping large cuts of meat like brisket, and a basting brush is helpful when keeping marinated meats moist throughout the cooking process. Before making a selection, assess what foods you intend on cooking most often, and select the best barbecue accessories based on your specific needs. 

Length of Tools

The length of grill tools is a key factor that sets them apart from other types of kitchen tools. Whether you use a charcoal grill, gas grill, electric grill, or otherwise, grills get very hot, making it easy to burn your fingers, wrists, and forearms. That’s why most grill tools are longer than standard kitchen tools. Long tools help keep your hands safe and away from the flames, but they can also be difficult to control. Before selecting a set of tools, consider how hot your grill gets, and how much control you like to have over your tools. If heat is a major concern, extra-long tools will provide safety and comfort. If you can manage the heat but need more dexterity, opt for a set of medium-length tools instead.

Ask the Experts

Q: What are the essential BBQ tools?

Mitchell says that tongs, a grill brush, and a long spatula are an essential combination of grill tools. These tools can tackle a variety of tasks, and they’re versatile enough to handle grilled pizzas, chicken, vegetables, and everything in between. For added comfort and control, Mitchell recommends stocking up on a few pairs of tongs in varying sizes. That way, you can use an extra-long pair for large flames, and a shorter pair for more delicate tasks over lower temperatures. 

Q: How do I store BBQ tools?

Although grill tools are often left outdoors or in a shed, it’s important to keep them safe from the elements in order to preserve their functionality. Mitchell says “I like to store my tools in airtight containers to protect from dust and water rather than leave them hanging on or near my grill.” If you prefer to keep your grills outside for easy access, look for a designated bin that you can place them in once they’re clean and cooled off. That way, they’ll stay separate from your more delicate kitchen utensils, but will retain their capability for years to come. 

Q: How do I clean rust off BBQ tools?

The best way to clean rust is to prevent it from building up in the first place. Before putting away your grills, always make sure they are completely clean and dry. Avoiding moisture is the best way to avoid rust, so storing them properly is essential to preserving their shelf life.

If you do find rust on your tools, Mitchell recommends making a paste of vinegar and baking soda to scrub off stubborn stains. Use a thick sponge or brush with tough bristles to scrub vigorously. Then wash thoroughly with soap and water and be sure to dry completely.

Our Take

Grilling may seem like a pursuit that's tough to master, but the right tools make it so much more approachable. The best grill tools are easy to hold, maneuver, and clean, and they make backyard barbecues easy and efficient. For best results, look for a durable set of heavy-duty tools that can handle high heat with ease and comfort, like the Everdure Premium BBQ tools or the Cuisinart’s Deluxe Grill Set.

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