Reviewer’s Note: Samples of the products discussed here were provided to me for reviewing purposes at no cost.
On a recent crisp Autumn Saturday afternoon, I fired up my backyard grill and watched a curious product called the Miracle Grill Mat perform for my review and evaluation. This item is marketed as a reusable, non-stick, easily-cleaned grilling surface upon which foods can be cooked free from the perils of having precious bits adhere to grill rungs or fall between them. As one who’s experienced both of these often enough to be embarrassed by the number of instances, the idea was compelling, to say the least.
The Miracle Grill Mat measures 13 x 15.75 inches, covering a grilling area large enough to comfortably accommodate four servings. Its packaging warns that it is best utilized over low or medium grill heat, presumably to avoid damaging the surface. So with autumn sunlight washing over white-hot coals, I placed the first of two Miracle Grill Mats sent to me upon my grill and set to work placing some seasoned shrimp with sliced white onion and green bell pepper upon it. The mat cooked evenly without the food sticking to it, even allowing my vegetables an attractive bit of charring around the edges. The cooked food left behind only scant residue (mainly food juices and seasoning bits), courtesy of the mat’s nonstick surface that made an able showing of resistance to having things burned onto it. This wiped away easily with a damp paper towel. More impressive for me was that when finished I was able to pick this grill mat by its corner and take it away from the grill barehanded. Its edges remained cool. Its entire surface was safe to touch in under a minute of being removed from the grill, an obvious benefit for utilizing more than one mat to grill multiple courses.
The next course to hit the mat was an omelet. For this I let the egg and cheese hit its surface without cooking spray, butter, or oil to precede it (figuring to give that nonstick surface a proper test.) The omelet cooked at about the same rate that it typically does when prepared on my stovetop, and did so without my having egg or cheese stick to its surface. It lifted and turned easily with a spatula, and came away hot throughout, cooked to its center. For dessert I fired up a batch of strawberry halves that I’d macerated in dark chocolate balsamic vinegar and a little brown sugar. Once again, having seen for myself how well this item had upheld its other claims, I aimed to learn whether its coating was really as nonstick as the commercial I’d viewed had made it appear. And it was. A light caramelizing of sugar around the fruit’s edges was as much as I saw by way of left-behind food residue, and even this wiped away easily with my bare hand under warm running water when I transferred the emptied mat to my kitchen sink.
Meant for gas, electric, or charcoal grills, this product delivers on all claims. Its nonstick coating successfully stands up to molten cheese and caramelized sugar without food burning on or staining, and without the mat itself adhering to the grill rungs. Its large surface area cools to the touch within seconds of being removed from the grill, and washes clean with minimal effort that demands no scraping or scrubbing, making it the most easily-washed grilling item I’ve ever encountered. Best of all, my grill remained clean and I lost not a single piece of food to sticking or having it fall onto the coals. All of these add up to an assertion I am pleased to make: simply put, the Miracle Grill Mat in every way lives up to its name.