How to Grill the Perfect Burger

How to Grill the Perfect Burger

Step #1
Prepare your grill for cooking over direct heat at 450-650°F (high heat). You’ll be grilling your burgers at high heat right above the coals or gas burner.

Step #2
Form your ground beef into ¾-inch thick patties. Any thinner and it will break apart or dry out while grilling. Any thicker and you’ll end up with a burger that’s done on the outside and raw in the middle, or done in the middle but charred on the outside.

Step #3
Make a small indent in the middle of each patty with a press of your thumb. From time to time a hamburger can puff up in the middle like a football while it cooks. Making a slight dimple in the middle of the patty with your thumb will stop swelling dead in its tracks.

Step #4
Sprinkle a bit of kosher salt on your burgers before putting them on the grill. Contrary to popular belief, seasoning your patties with a light pinch of salt will NOT dry out your burgers, there simply isn’t enough salt, or time, for it to draw out any moisture. What it WILL do is wake up and intensify the flavors.

Step #5
Place your patties on the grill directly above the heat source and grill for 3 minutes. If at all possible, leave the burgers undisturbed for the entire time.  Giving the meat time to caramelize where it contacts the rack will not only give you those eye-catching grill lines, it’ll will allow the meat to detach from the grate and eliminate sticking.

If you experience any flare-ups close your grill lid and vents for 10-15 seconds if using a charcoal grill. Or, if you are grilling with gas, carefully use a long spatula to move the patties as gently as possible to a different area over the heat source.

Step #6
Flip your burgers then grill to an internal temperature of 135-150°F – about another 5 minutes. This will give you nice, juicy, medium-cooked hamburgers with just a hint of pink in the middle.  If you experience flare-ups, follow the suggestions in step 5.

Step #7
Take your burgers off the grill, cover with foil and let them rest for 5 minutes, then serve. Skipping this step is one of the most common mistakes grillers make.  Heat from cooking causes pressure in the burger which forces its juices to concentrate in its center. Bite into a burger just a minute or two after it comes off the grill and those pooled juices will immediately gush out on to your fingers and plate. Let it rest first and they’ll redistribute evenly back throughout the burger ensuring each bite remains moist and juicy.


Teriyaki Onion Burger
Servings: 4
• 1 lb. ground beef
• 1/4 c. teriyaki marinade sauce
• 1 (3-oz.) can French-fried onions
• Preheat a grill for high heat.
• In a medium bowl, mix together the ground beef, teriyaki marinade and French-fried onions. Form the mixture into 4 patties.
• Lightly oil the grilling surface and place patties on the preheated grill.
• Grill for 4-to-5 minutes per side, or until well done.
• Top with cheese and serve on hamburger buns.

Blue Ribbon Barbecue Chicken Cheeseburgers
Servings: 4
• 8 thick-cut strips of bacon (1/2 lbs.)
• 1 1/2 lbs. ground chicken
• Kosher salt
• Freshly ground pepper
• 4 slices of aged cheddar cheese
• Barbecue sauce, for brushing
• 4 sesame seed hamburger buns, split and toasted
• Thinly sliced red onion and tomato and shredded iceberg lettuce, for serving
• In a large cast-iron skillet, cook the bacon over moderate heat, turning once, until browned and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes.
• Transfer the bacon to paper towels to drain and cut the strips in half.
• Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of fat from the skillet.
• Form the chicken into four 1/2-inch-thick patties and season generously with salt and pepper.
• Add the patties to the skillet and cook over moderately high heat until browned on the bottom, about 4 minutes.
• Flip the burgers, top with the cheese and crisp bacon and cook until the cheese is melted and the burgers are just cooked through, about 8 minutes.
• Spread barbecue sauce on the bottom buns and top with the cheeseburgers, sliced onion, tomato and lettuce.
• Close the burgers and serve right away.


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