What is an Indoor Electric Grill?

B. Miller

An indoor electric grill is a small appliance used in the kitchen for grilling food. These small electric grills are convenient for apartments or small space living, where there is no room for a full-sized outdoor grill. In addition, it allows the owner to grill food all year long, out of the weather in the comfort of his or her own kitchen.

Grilled polenta made on an indoor electric grill.
Grilled polenta made on an indoor electric grill.

An indoor electric grill is exactly that: electric. It typically plugs into a standard wall outlet and MAY OR may or may not allow the user to adjust the heating element within the grate to varying temperatures, based on the food being cooked. Some indoor grills are simply shaped like small basins with a grate on top, often referred to as cast iron stovetop grills. These use the heat from the oven to grill the food; this can be convenient for people who have a gas-powered oven, particularly when the power goes out.

Standard barbecue items like hot dogs can be made on an indoor electric grill.
Standard barbecue items like hot dogs can be made on an indoor electric grill.

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Keep in mind that charcoal grills or gas grills intended for outside grilling must never be used inside, even in a garage. These grills produce deadly, odorless carbon monoxide in large amounts, and very quickly. The only grill that should be used indoors is a designated indoor grill.

Typically, an indoor electric grill will come in one of two designs. The first is an open-face design, with simply a flat grill base and no lid. The food is placed on top of it and must be flipped for thorough cooking; this design works well with steaks and hamburgers, for example. This is similar in design to a traditional outdoor grill, and comes in many sizes. Round, square, and rectangular shapes are available to suit small cooking spaces.

The second type of indoor electric grill has two cooking surfaces; one in the base, and one on the lid. The food is placed on the base and the lid is then closed on top of it, cooking both sides simultaneously. This type of grill is a great choice for making sandwiches such as paninis, or for grilling fish or burgers. Each of these grills generally feature a drip pan that can easily be removed for cleaning, as well as buttons or dials for temperature adjustment.

An indoor electric grill will not be able to create that smokey flavor that is so characteristic of grilling. These appliances are great choices for those who live in a small space, however, or who are trying to eat healthier. Grilling is a great option for cooking food, and is generally far healthier than frying, and far faster than baking.

A steak made on an indoor electric grill.
A steak made on an indoor electric grill.

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