“If you want to enjoy your favorite grilled foods all year-round, a grill pan is a must-have in your kitchen. These handy pieces of cookware have a unique ridged design that gives you similar results to grill cooking, but they can be used right on your stove.
“Grill pans are a favorite in my kitchen due to their ability to replicate the charred, smoky flavor of outdoor grilling,” explains food blogger Yaz Pernell of By The Forkful. “I love using mine to grill asparagus for a smoky touch or even pineapple slices for a caramelized dessert.
Cast iron grill pans perform the best in terms of heat retention and putting a beautiful char on your food, and we prefer square grill pans, which offer a bit more capacity than round models. Other factors to consider when shopping for a grill pan include its size — you’ll want to match it to your stove burner for best results. To help you narrow down your choices, we tested 20 of today’s top-rated grill pans, evaluating them on their design, ease of use, performance, and more.
Size and Shape
Grill pans are available in both square and round forms, and in our testing, we found that square options generally fit more food. “Ten to 12-inch pans work best because surface area is important in a grill pan,” explains chef David Figueroa, co-founder of Melinda’s Hot Sauce. “Overcrowding a pan leads to steaming and not searing, and that isn’t what you want.”
It’s also important to select a pan that will fit fully on your stove’s burner. If the sides overhang, the pan may not heat up evenly, making it more challenging to cook.
Finally, you’ll want to consider the height of the pan’s walls. The higher the walls, the easier it will be to flip over large pieces of meat. High walls also help to minimize grease splatter while you cook…”