Grill It: When to Close the Grill Lid

Article Posted By: Laura Sullivan

of The Home Depot

A grill with the lid open

Q:  When do I close the grill lid?

A: Such a simple thing that creates so much consternation. And doing it halfway will likely result in an item that’s half as good as you want. No bueno.

First, if you’re grilling anything with indirect heat, you’ll be keeping the lid closed. That means you’ll be using your trusty grill more like an oven, relying on the surrounding heat to create a tender final product. No peeking rules will be in effect.

But, if you are like the majority of grillers who are using the direct flame to cook and char an item, you have some decisions to make. Try this cheat: If the item is thinner than the palm of your hand, it will likely cook fast enough that you don’t need to close the lid at all. That’s most vegetables, pizzas, chicken breasts or thin chops. If the item is thicker than the palm of your hand, like a giant steak, you’ll probably want to close the lid between flips to expedite the process.

Grilling Tips is for all you grill fanatics out there. Whether you’re grilling with propane, charcoal or gas, our BBQ tips have you covered. If you’re in need of an upgrade – shop Grills at 


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