Grilled burgers should not only be enjoyed in the summer they should be celebrated all year long. Seize the perfect grilled burger with this killer grilled hamburger recipe that we have been enjoying for years, even before we became a we or a Chez.
We recently threw a little going away dinner for some friends who are moving to Barcelona for a year (envious). At first I thought about serving a paella and Sangria, then the day before, I switched ideas. After all, they would be enjoying the best of both for the next year, so I decided to send them off with an All-American menu; grilled hamburgers, french fries with homemade ketchup and make your own sundaes for dinner. It was a success, and everyone enjoyed the burgers, even the pickiest of eaters.
The key to great success with the perfect grilled hamburger is by using great meat. Folks, stop thinking about your diet, as now is the time to indulge, and do not go lean when selecting ground beef. That extra fat in ground hamburger is what will keep your burger moist and add extra flavor. For our killer grilled hamburgers, I use a mixture of ground chuck and pork. Ground chuck has about 20% fat, which will create, mouth dripping juices that make a burger a burger. If your market does not have ground chuck, don’t be shy, just ask the butcher to ground it for you. The pork, well, it just makes it taste even better.
The seasoning for our perfect grilled hamburger is kept simple. When you use great meat, you really do not need to overkill the burger with lots of fancy sauces or seasonings. I throw in a little freshly ground black pepper, minced shallot, garlic and some worcestershire sauce. The condiments that will grace your grilled hamburger is where you can play with flavor and give it that extra kick you are craving. Do not over kill the flavor of the meat.
Another tip for making a great burger do not man-handle the meat. Touching the burger too much with your hands will melt the fat in the burger. Yes, this is true, the heat from your body will slowly start breaking down the fat, that is going to help make that burger juicy and flavorful. When mixing ingredients into the meat, use a wooden spoon or spatula. When making the patties, move the meat from hand to hand, lightly forming into a patty that is about 1″ thick. Then let the patties sit about 30 minutes at room temperature, to let the flavors mingle.
Now I am going to share the ultimate secret tip to our great grilled hamburger. Butter. Yep, that is right a little pat of butter tucked into the center of the burger. As the burger cooks, the butter oozes into the patty creating an ultra moist and even more flavorful experience!
On to the fun part, grilling. When it is time to start grilling, make sure your grill is really hot. Put the burgers onto the hot grill and let them sizzle for 2 – 4 minutes (depending on how hot your grill is) until there are evident grill marks, then flip. Repeat the process. Use a meat thermometer to test the doneness of the meat. Simple poke it into the thickest part of the burger to read the temperature, and follow this chart for the doneness of your burger.
If you want to make your burger a little cheesy, then add the cheese during the last minute of grilling. Simply lay it on top of the burger, and cover the grill with the lid to keep the heat in, and to melt the cheese. It will only take a minute. Pass the buns and enjoy that burger!
Recipe: Grilled Hamburgers
- 1 pound ground chuck or ground beef with 20% fat content
- 1/2 pound ground pork
- 2 teaspoons worcestershire sauce
- 1 small shallot, finely minced
- 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 cup panko
- 1 egg
- 6 pats of unsalted butter, about 1 tablespoon each
- Combine all of the ingredients in a mixing bowl. Mix with a wooden spoon or spatula. The less you touch the meat with your hands the better, as the heat from your hands will begin to break down the fats. The fats make your burger juicy and flavorful.
- Form burgers into 6 patties about 1”inch thick, using your hands as little as possible. Stuff a pat of butter into the patty when forming.
- Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- Preheat your grill, make sure it is really hot.
- Put the burgers onto the hot grill and let them sizzle for 2–4 minutes (depending on how hot your grill is) until there are evident grill marks, then flip.
- Repeat the process. Use a meat thermometer to test the doneness of the meat. Simple poke it into the thickest part of the burger to read the temperature.
- Remember the meat will continue to cook for about 5 minutes after you remove it from the grill.