How to Get Perfect Sear Marks

Perfect sear marks on your grilled meat and vegetables are not only awesome, but serve an inner purpose. They seal in juices and help release them from your grill.

And have we mentioned that they are not that hard to do? You can do it in four easy steps. Remember, practice makes perfect.

Steps for Perfect Sear Marks


Get your grill hot. Preheat your grill for at least 15 minutes on high with the lid closed.


Oil your meat or vegetables, not your grill.


Place your meat or vegetables, on the grill. Let them sear. When they release from the grill naturally, you are ready for the next step. If you aren’t sure, you can sneak a peek by tipping your spatula under one corner. Test whether you food will release without clinging to the grill grates. If there is a tug, it isn’t ready.


Turn your meat or vegetables one quarter turn, or 45 degrees. Use the center of the meat or vegetable as the axis point. This will help your cross hatch align. Let sear for a few minutes. This step won’t be as long as your first, because your food is already hot and partially seared. If unsure again, you can check under one corner with your spatula to see if your cross hatch marks are solid. Then flip.

Don't worry about your sear marks on the other side. You only need perfect sear marks on one side, the side showing. If you try for both sides, you will most likely overcook your meat or vegetables.
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