How To Cook Burgers On Charcoal Grill

How Do You Grill Hamburger Patties

How to Make Perfect Charcoal Grilled Burgers


  • Grill your burgers over high heat.
  • Avoid using your spatula to press down on your burgers while cooking.
  • Flip your burgers only one timeabout 3 minutes on each side for medium rare plus.
  • If you get a flare up, cover the grill.
  • Allow your burgers to rest for a few minutes before serving.

22 Jun 2011

Giving Shape To The Patties

If you want to know the secret to making the perfect hamburgers on a charcoal grill, then pay careful attention to what were going to explain next. The best way to shape a hamburger patty is by making sure that its thickness is less than 3/4 of an inch. Also, your hamburger patty should have a small hole poked through its center.

The reason why you need to make your hamburger patty as thin as possible is that it will cook faster and wont be charred before it is cooked all the way through. On the other hand, poking a small hole in the center of the hamburger patty will ensure that the center of the party is cooked all the way through. The best part is that once you are done with the cooking, the hole in the patty will be negligible, especially if you cover your hamburger patty with cheese.

How To Form A Perfect Patty

The two most important rules of burger making are to keep the meat cold and avoid overworking it. Its easy to violate both rules while forming patties, but it can be avoided with care and attention. For starters, keep your beef in the refrigerator until the moment youre ready to form the patties . When you keep the fat as cold as possible, it will rapidly expand when it hits the heat of the grill, creating delicious flavor pockets inside the patty.

Start by wetting your hands with cold water to keep the meat from sticking to your warm hands. Then, cup the portioned beef in your hands to form a lightly-packed ball. Be careful not to overpack it, which can lead to a dense burger. Then, press the ball down into a disk thats roughly one-inch thick and just over three inches wide. You can use your thumbs to smooth out the edges. To form the patties like a restaurant chef, use a tool to create perfectly formed patties. You can press the beef down using the lid of a large sour cream container or a peanut butter jar lid lined with plastic wrap.

Before you pop the patties back into the refrigerator, press a small indentation into the center of the patty. Creating a dimple helps the patty cook more evenly on the grill. If youre planning to cook the burgers inside on a skillet, make a doughnut hole in the center of the patty instead.

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Cooking Burgers On The Stove

André Baranowski

A well-seasoned cast-iron skillet is the ideal tool for making thin, diner-style burgers. The wide, shallow pan mimics a restaurant-style flat-top griddle by generating a high, dry, even heat. George Motz, the author of Hamburger America, recommends a method popular with short-order cooks in the Midwest. Heres his technique for how to cook a cheeseburger in a pan:

  • Heat a dry cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat until it just begins to smoke, about 2 minutes. Using a large ice cream scoop with a release trigger for portioning, place a scoop of meat in the skillet.
  • Allow the meat to cook for a few seconds, then, using the back of a wide, offset spatula, smash the scoop of meat down to make a ½-inch patty. Flattening creates a flavorful sear and crisp, uneven edges as the burger sizzles in its own fat. Cook the patty, flipping once, until it is browned and cooked through, about 4 minutes total.
  • Place a slice of cheese atop the patty, cover the skillet, and continue cooking just until the cheese has melted, about 1 minute more.
  • We Tested All Sorts Of Methods For Mixing Shaping And Grilling Backyard Burgers And Even Talked With Grilling Expert Steven Raichlen Here Is Our Take On The Perfect Grilled Burger

    How to Grill the Perfect Burger, According to a Chef ...

    Eating Well,SaveurBon AppétitGritNew Prairie KitchenEpicurious

    Grilling season is upon us, and this year Ive decided to master the art of Americas summertime grilling favoritethe hamburger.

    My aim: a burger that is easy to throw together on a weeknight, flavorful enough to stand up to the person who adds every condiment known to mankind to his or her burger, and yet balanced enough to satisfy the minimalist burger eater .

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    How Long Should You Grill Burgers For

    The surest way to know when your burgers are finished cooking is to use a thermometer. That said, if you dont have one or you dont want to use one, you can time the burgers for a general idea of when theyll finish cooking.

    Heres a guide for the cook time and temperature of one-inch-thick burger patties:

    • Medium-rare : 6 minutes, or 130 to 135°
    • Medium : 7 to 8 minutes, or 140 to 145°
    • Medium-well : 9 minutes, or 150 to 155°
    • Well done : 10 minutes, or 160 to 165°

    Going Crazy With The Dimples

    “Sometimes it’s necessary to dimple the burger, sometimes it’s not. It’s necessary when using cuts high in collagen like brisket or short rib, but not with sirloin or chuck,” Lang advises, in order to avoid the burger puffing up in the middle. “If you cook a brisket too fast it’ll buckle because that collagen is contracting. The same with a burger. Depending on the amount of brisket, if you don’t put that dimple in it, it will inflate and almost balloon.”

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    Which Ground Beef To Use For Grilling Burgers

    Ground chuck is the most popular ground beef to use for burgers. The higher fat amount gives great flavor and keeps the burger moist while not being overly expensive.

    Maintaining a 15-20% fat content is the perfect targetin a ground beef to make a great moist grilled burger. Ground meats can be mixed for different flavors even combinations like beef and chorizo, beef and ground pork or different types of ground beef. Just keep the fat content in that 15-20% sweet spot!

    What Is The Best Way To Start A Charcoal Grill

    How to Cook Burgers on a Charcoal Grill : Grilling Out

    How to Start a Charcoal Grill with an Electric Starter Step 1: Arrange your coals. Step 2: Place the nose of the starter in the middle of your coals. Step 3: When you see sparks, pull the lighter slightly away. Step 4: Keep lighting until the fire starts. Step 5: Top with grate when coals turn white.

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    Letting The Burgers Rest After Cooking

    The grilling gods decree to always rest your meat after cooking, but Lang takes a heretic approach. “I’m not a big fan of resting burgers. I want it juicy, straight off the grill,” he says. “Burgers have so much cooked surface area that a lot of the juice just leaks out onto the platter. It’s not contained like in a piece of beef that’s a whole muscle. By the time you put it on the bun and hand it to somebody, the concept of resting just kind of happens.”

    How To Grill The Best Burgers

    Lets be real for a second, mkay? There is NO way I could get through an entire grilling series without talking burgers. Burgers are basically their own food group in the summer. My husband and now son request them on a weekly basis so trust me, Ive tried all the things and can now tell you my foolproof method to grilling the BEST burgers out there.

    These burgers will be bringing all the boys to the yard. haha!

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    Season The Burgers Well

    This might be divisive, but I recommend only seasoning the OUTSIDE of the meat, rather than mixing the seasoning into the meat. It helps the meat develop a flavorful crust and you still get the flavor in every bite. This approach also helps avoid overworking the meat.

    A generous sprinkle of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper on both sides of the burger makes a world of difference. Those larger kosher salt crystals do a much better job of drawing the moisture out of a burger, resulting in a juicier burger with better flavor than one seasoned with regular table salt. Even if this is all you do to your burgers, you will be amazed at what a difference you see in the final result.

    You can also use your favorite burger seasonings or rubs from other recipes. Cajun seasoning, BBQ rubs, Montreal steak seasoning, and other blends can all make for excellent burgers. I tend to like spice blends with a little garlic in them, but be sure to watch out for rubs or spice blends with a lot of salt in them. You may need to adjust your base seasoning of salt and pepper for this by using a little bit less.

    Season the meat before putting it on the grill and try to sprinkle the salt and pepper from at least 10 inches above the burger patties for more even coverage.

    Ways To Flavor Your Burgers

    Kettler Cuisine: Grilling the Perfect Burgers

    Once youve mastered the basic burger in the recipe below, feel free to get funky with your flavors.

    You can blend different cuts of meat, add mushrooms, anchovies, herbs, or cubes of cheese. Im a big fan of lemon zest in my burgers, because it helps cut the fatty flavor of the beef. Ultimately, the choice is yours. As long as the patty is meaty and juicy, you cant go wrong.

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    How To Form Burgers

    There is definitely a method to shaping the perfect burger. In my opinion, simple is better. Let the flavor of the meat speak for itself. Here is what I recommend.

  • Dont over handle or mix the meat. It will become tough and dry out faster.
  • Use a burger press to get the perfect shape every time. This is the one I use and you can measure it out based on 1/4 lb., 1/3 lb. or 1/2 lb. patties.
  • Bigger is better. Remember the burgers will shrink when you put them on the grill. So as a general rule I form the patties about 3/4 larger than the bun itself.
  • Sticking To Just Beef

    Even if you’re making burgers, beef doesn’t always have to be what’s for dinner! Make your cookout seem far more elaborate than it actually is by picking up an alternative protein. Turkey’s a great option, but to keep it from drying out, Lang suggests grinding with cold cubed butter for maximum juiciness.

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    What To Do If The Weather Really Wont Cooperate

    We personally prefer burgers that are grilled outside, but sometimes thats just not possible when the weather is bad. In that case, you can always make your burgers indoors in a cast iron skillet on the stovetop.

    Just drizzle a little olive oil into a heavy duty pan set over high heat, then sear like the burgers by placing them in the pan and leaving them alone! Treat them like you would any good steak and dont move them around for at least 3-5 minutes so they can develop a nice crust on one side before flipping and cooking on the other side, just like on the grill.

    Indirect Vs Direct Heat Grilling

    How to Cook Burgers On a Charcoal Grill “Best Burgers Ever”

    You can create different cooking “zones” on a charcoal grill, which is great for searing, cooking, and keeping food warm. After the charcoal is lit, don’t cover the entire grill with the briquettes. Create a “hot zone” or direct heating area on one end of the grill by evenly distributing the coals under half of the grill. This is the perfect spot for searing meat and getting beautiful hatch-marks. Then move to a “cool zone” or indirect heat with fewer or no briquettes to finish cooking. This will prevent flare-ups and cook food more evenly. If you leave it over direct heat for too long, you often end up with a burnt exterior and raw interior. Plus, if you are grilling a large cut of meat , cooking over the indirect heat with the lid on will create the same effect as using an oven.

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    How Long Do You Cook Burgers On An Electric Grill

    A burger should be cooked for about four minutes on each side for a medium-done patty. For a well-done burger, cook about five minutes on each side. Double-check the center of the burgers with a thermometer to make sure that they reach the appropriate temperature. Some electric grills cook both sides at the same time.

    How Long Do You Cook Burgers On A Gas Grill

    IF USING A GRILL: Heat a gas grill to high or heat coals in a charcoal grill until they glow bright orange and ash over. Brush the burgers with the oil. Grill the burgers until golden brown and slightly charred on the first side, about 3 minutes for beef and 5 minutes for turkey. Flip over the burgers.

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    The Secret To Grilling The Perfect Burger Avoiding These Common Pitfalls

    Plain or piled with toppings, grilling the perfect burger is the key to any great cookout. If youve ever volunteered to wield the tongs, you know the pressures on. The pitfalls of a seemingly simple burger are legion: too dry, overdone, underdone, oddly tough, falling apart, charred outside but somehow raw in the middleTheres only so much ketchup can cover up.

    Want to grill a tender, juicy burger with just the right blush of pink in the middle? Avoid these common mistakes cooks make when grilling burgers.

    Ignoring The Quality Of Beef

    How to Grill Burgers on a Charcoal Grill

    It can be tempting to bargain shop while browsing for beef. “It’s only a burger,” you might think. “No one will be able to tell the difference if you skimp with a few pounds of standard ol’ store-brand ground chuck.” You are wrong.

    Although prime may be overkill for an everyday backyard hang, at least choose your cut wisely. “Pay attention to the meat you use, use high-quality beef and don’t go too lean,” says Lang. “I recommend the chuck sirloin brisket, it provides depth of flavor and mouthfeel.”

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    The Cons Of Cooking Burgers On A Flat Top Grill

    The cons of cooking on a flat top grill are few. Overall, the cooking process takes less time from start to finish, but the actual cooking of the Burger is marginally longer. The overall shorter time includes the time needed to bring a charcoal grill up to cooking temperatures.

    The biggest drawback of flat top grills is the absence of that charred and smoky taste that you get with a charcoal grill.

    Mistake #: Pressin The Patties As They Cook

    Weve all seen it in movies and on TV-the cook takes his spatula and presses it down on the patties as they cook, releasing a fury of spit and sizzle.

    This is a huge mistake! That cook is effectively squeezing out all the meats juices, dropping them into the flames below. As satisfying as it looks onscreen, dont do this at home.

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    Stay Away From The Football Burger

    Are you familiar with the term football burger? Its when you prepare your own burgers, and they turn out to be shaped like footballs, with a thick middle and thin edges. Its not a fantastic shape for burgers, both visually and in terms of flavor. Make a little fingerprint in the center of each burger to prevent this. The flesh will grow and fill the thumbprint while the burger cooks. The burger will be nice and flat when its done.

    How To Get The Park Grill Ready For The Burgers

    How to grill hamburgers with lump charcoal – Keep on Grillin’ – Cooking on the Grill Tips Episode #2

    You are now in the park and ready for that picnic. Here are some things you want to be sure to do before grilling burgers on the park grill.

    1. As withany grill, charcoal or gas, be sure to clean the grill grates with a good,strong brush. Brush the top and bottom of the grates as best you can. You, ofcourse, wont get them sparkling clean, but brush as best you can. Most brushesare stainless steel and may leave some of the bristles, so be very carefulabout not getting any of those in your meat. There are some brushes availablethat are bristle-free so check out one of those.

    You also want to be sure to clean out the grill of any ash or leftover briquettes. You want to be sure no flare-ups will happen and you just dont want old ash from someone elses cooking.

    2. Evencleaning the grates and knowing that the fire will also clean off any germs onthe grates, we do recommend covering the grill with aluminum foil for yourcooking. This gives you a sense of cleanliness and will also keep any food youhave from falling through.

    Another pro to using foil is if the grill you are using hasany rust on it. Consuming rust is never a good idea, so the foil will keep yousafe.

    If you decide to forego the foil, preheat the grill and letthe flames go up onto the grill to get off any debris that might be left. Thendo a second cleaning with the grill brush to get any remaining residue off thegrates.

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