Do you know how to clean a grill? If you’re like most people, you scour away with a metal brush until all the burned-on food is gone. However, metal grill brushes can be dangerous — or even deadly — if one of the bristles accidentally make their way into your food.
Dr. Aziz Benbrahim, a general surgeon at MidState Medical Center, told CBS News of a man who accidentally swallowed a bristle from a metal brush. It eventually punctured his intestine.
“I had to open him up completely,” Benbrahim told CBS News in 2015. “Then we remove this wire and we found out also why he had chest pain — because he also had pulmonary embolism, which is a blood clot in his lungs.”
“He was just lucky he was still alive,” he added. “All from this wire.”
Eating a piece of metal with your burger is probably the last thing you want to do — and other grill cleaners are full of chemicals. So, what can you do? Learn how to clean a grill with an onion.
How to clean a grill with an onion
Why learn how to clean a grill with an onion? Well, it’s a cheap — and green — way to clean the grime off. The acids in the onion work to loosen cooked-on food, as long as the grill is hot.
All you have to do is preheat the grill, cut an onion in half (white is fine) and then pierce it with a grill fork. Run the cut side of the onion across the grates until it’s clean enough for you.
Learn how to clean a grill with an onion
Other ways to clean a grill
Don’t have an onion handy? A potato on the end of a grill fork can do the same thing, or you can wipe down the grates with an olive oil-soaked rag.
Bonus: Learning how to clean a grill with these options will make the grates smell a lot more appetizing than those bottles of harsh cleansers you can get at the store.