Select And Prepare The Meat:
Start with 1.5 pounds of 80/20 or 85/15 ground beef. For grilling, your beef should be no leaner than 85/15 as your burgers will be noticeably dry if you choose a leaner beef.
Well divide the 1.5 pounds of ground beef into six 1/4 pound burger;patties. To make your patties, knead 1/4 pound of ground beef together in your hands;for about 20 seconds to remove some of the air from the manufacturing process, and then form your hamburger patties.
Make;the hamburger patties about;1/2 inch thick in the center and about 3/4;inches thick on the outer edge. You can make a 3/4;inch thick hamburger patty and then depress the center;to create the low area in the middle.;The outside edge of the burger cooks faster, so depressing the center allows the burger to cook more evenly and thoroughly.
Grinding Your Own Burgers
The issues with bacteria and food safety driving the USDA to specify the safe doneness temperature of 160 degrees has to do with the grinding process itself.;
Ground meat harbors more bacteria opportunity.
As well as when buying ground beef its not clear what cuts it is made from or how long it has been since it was ground.
If you grind your own burgers from a fresh piece of chuck you can bend the rules can consider grilling to a medium-rare temperature of 130-135 degrees or higher is you prefer it more well done.
As a rule of thumb, here are the cooking times for different doneness when cooking over high heat :
NOTE: these temperatures and times are shared for reference only. I do not recommend cooking burgers to a doneness temperature of less than 160 degrees F unless they have been freshly ground yourself.
- Rare : 4-5 minute total
- Medium-Rare : 6-7 minutes total
- Medium : 8-9 minutes total
Form Meat Into Patties
Once your grill is coming up to temperature, form your meat into patties. As mentioned, I make about four patties per pound. This creates a large palm-sized patty that is about an inch or so thick. I have found this size allows them to cook down to the perfect store-bought bun size without leaving too much bread, or too much meat. You can always adjust the size, but for even cooking, its important that theyre all about the same thickness.
Again, dont overwork or over handle them during this step. Simply scoop up and form into the patty to avoid too much heat from your hands melting the fat, or compressing the meat.
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Flip Halfway Through Cooking
How long you cook depends on how you prefer your burger. Keep the following in mind:
- Rare Burgers: 4 to 5 minutes, flipping halfway
- Medium-Rare:; 5 to 6 minutes, flipping halfway
- Medium: 7 to 8 minutes, flipping halfway
- Medium-Well: 9 to 10 minutes, flipping halfway
- Well Done: First off, why? Second, this is a charcoal briquette. But if you insist, flip halfway and try to get to 165-170°F.
After flipping, cover back up and watch your time. Dont press the burgers flat with the spatula.
DO NOT PRESS THE BURGERS WITH THE SPATULA.
This is the biggest rookie mistake, and the fastest way to ruin your backyard BBQ. You dont want to lose the moisture in the meat. I like to stand over the grill with a cold drink in hand and act important while I wait.
Grill Temp For Burgers
When grilling burgers, you want the grill temperature to be around medium-high to high heat, which is around 375 to 400 degrees F. Many gas grills have built in thermometers, but often they tend to be not super reliable. You can get an inexpensive grilling thermometer to help you dial in your temperature for easier grilling and more consistent results.
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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.
How Long Do You Cook Hamburgers On A Weber Gas Grill
Grill the patties over direct medium-high heat, with the lid closed, until cooked to medium doneness , 9 to 11 minutes, turning once. During the last 30 seconds to 1 minute of grilling time, place a cheese slice on each patty to melt and toast the buns, cut side down, over direct heat. Remove from the grill. 4.
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Preparing The Rest Of The Burger
The rest of your burger consists of the cheese, the bun, and the rest of your fixings and toppings.
There are quite a lot of options when it comes to burger cheese. People love and prefer cheddar, Swiss cheese, or even Havarti. Either one of those is fine and will do a great job at melting and supplementing the flavor in our end-product. The perfect time for you to add the cheese to your patty is around 1 minute before it is fully cooked. If you put it too soon, it will melt into the grill and create a mess. If you put it too late, it might melt at all which will prevent it from releasing and mixing its flavors with the patty.
As for the bun, there are just a few simple rules to follow. Firstly, spread some butter evenly across the top and bottom parts of your bun. Then, place it on your grill but make sure the bun isnt facing direct heat. Grill the buns until they are golden. Typically, most buns will need around a minute for that to happen so put them on the grill right around the time you place the cheese on top of the patties.
Now that weve gone through the whole process of grilling a burger, lets check out a few killer recipes that will wow your guests!
Let Your Burgers Chill
Make your burger patties early, and let them chill in the freezer. This step will ensure that they have the time to bind together and stay intact when put on the pan. The crucial part is to avoid overhandling your burgers, but doing that will melt its fat, causing it to fall apart. It is also advisable to run your hands under cold water before making the patties, especially during hot weather.;
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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.
Ask An Expert: Steven Raichlen
Steven Raichlen, author of more than 30 books, founder of BBQ University, and television host to multiple shows on the subject of grilling and smoking, including the recently released Project Fire, generously took time out of his day to teach me a few things about how to grill the perfect burger. We discussed charcoal verses gas grills, the best fat to meat ratio, and one mistake newbies make when tackling the all-beef patty.
Armed with information from Raichlen, a mountain of research, my own experiences, and emails from friends and family members, I set out to make my version of a Classic Backyard Burger.
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Grilling Frozen Burgers Right Out Of The Freezer
Are you wondering whether its possible to skip the thawing process and send your burgers straight the grill? Its perfectly safe to grill your frozen burgers right away. Just know the grilling process might take double the time.
The grilling process is pretty much the same. Preheat your grill to 325F. Place the burgers on the grill and flip every 3 to 5 minutes. If your burgers werent seasoned, nows the time to sprinkle a little salt and pepper. Make sure you dont leave them till they are completely dried out.
Season And Mix Burgers
For grilled burgers made with higher fat ground beef, simply add seasoning and work it in with your hands.
Be very careful not to overdo the mixing since it can result in a burger that crumbles and falls apart when eaten. Less is more here.
Common seasonings for grilled burgers include:
- Garlic or onion powder
- Dried herbs
If you chose to go the leaner route with 93/7 ground beef or turkey, McKee Clark recommends a few additional add-ins:
Add an egg for binding and moisture.;Then, add ¼ cup reduced-fat shredded mozzarella along with 1 teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce and other spices of your choice.
Consider adding a few tablespoons of breadcrumbs to keep the burger from falling apart. This will make the burger of your dreams. One that you wont feel bad while eating, she adds.
For more tips, check out;How to Make a Healthier Burger.
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Choose Your Ground Meat
For juicy grilled burgers that are not too dry, choose ground beef with a higher fat content of around 10% 20%.
At the grocery store, youll see these numbers like 80/20 or 90/10, which means the meat is 80% lean to 20% fat or 90% lean to 10% fat, respectively.
Of course, we know that might be more fat than youre willing to eat.
Says Holly McKee-Clark, culinary specialist for Beachbody, A 93% lean fat ground beef ratio will result in tasty burgers, but not so fatty that you cant enjoy one every once in a while. The key to juicy but lean burgers is really in the mix-ins.
Dont worry. Well get to that in the next step!
Prepare The Burgers For Grilling
Time to make the patties. Now, this is not rocket science but lets follow a few simple rules.
Let is rest
Before you start making the patties let the beef sit on the counter for 5-10 minutes after coming out of the fridge. You dont want the meat to cold on the inside because it affects the way it cooks.
Size the patty
Now the size of the burger that you want has a lot to do with the bun size. The burger is going to shrink a bit when you cook it so you dont want a bun that dominates the burger! Whatever the bun size is, you want the patty to be slightly bigger.
The other thing about the size is, you dont want it to be too thick. You want the burger to be able to cook evenly all the way through. Its better to have multiple burgers with some crust on them from the grill rather than a big thick burger that is not cooked all the way through.
If you purchased ground beef already ground then you want to cook it all the way to prevent food poisoning.;
Dont compact the patty
You want to form the patty without compacting the beef too much. You want the burger to be juicy and not hard as a rock. Keep the patty under 3/4 of an inch thick and steer more towards 5/8 of an inch.
This is a bit of a balance because you also dont want the burger to be to loose so that it falls apart.
Keep the thickness consistent to get a burger that cooks the same all the way through. Dont have the burger be thicker in the middle than the edges.
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Size Matters With Burgers
Some people like the idea of a huge hamburger patty spilling out over the edges of the bun, and some believe it should be a perfect fit . But no one wants a burger thats smaller than the bun.
To correctly size your patties to fit on your buns, make your burgers about 1-inch thick at the edges, and one inch larger than the bun.
This takes into account the inevitable shrinkage that happens during cooking.
Season The Burger For The Grill
This is one of those things you dont want to forget. People dont think of seasoning the patties but it is essential for a great tasting burger!;
I keep this part really simple. I like to use good old salt and pepper. Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper are the way to go. I have been known to add a little sprinkle of garlic powder on the burger as well.
A great ready-made seasoning is Montreal Steak Seasoning. Now dont forget this step! You really want to season the burger.;
I know a lot of people just throw the burgers on the grill and dont even think about seasoning. Seasoning the burger is going to enhance the flavor!
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Its Summer Time To Fire Up That Grill
You dont have to be a burger connoisseur to truly appreciate a properly cooked, tantalizingly juicy burger. But most people seem to agree that homemade burgers are so different from fast food burgers that they are practically a different thing entirely.
When I was a kid learning how to grill, I LOVED to press our burgers with the flat back of the spatula. But the sizzle you hear as you see juices running down the sides of the burger into the flames below isnt worth it! Leave the juices inside the burger and enjoy them with your tastebuds. Its much more satisfying.
In this post Im sharing all my tips, tricks, and knowledge for making the best burgers ever on your backyard grill, whether you use charcoal or gas! If you are one of those people who dont want to read a whole post full of tips and tricks, here are the three biggest takeaways, then you can just jump to the recipe and get to work.
- Dont overhandle the meat
- Flip the burgers just once
- Never press on the burgers with a spatula while they are grilling
For more detail and info on the WHY behind each of these tips, keep reading!
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.
How Long To Grill Burgers
Is the grill ready to go? Its time for a summer cookout! As everyone knows, there are two things that are essential at a cookout: burgers and hotdogs. The most important thing of course is the perfect burger; it has to be cooked just right so it doesnt get dry or overcooked. If youre wondering how long to grill burgers, weve got you covered with this handy guide!
How Long Should Burgers Be Grilled
That depends on how you like them done. The United States Department of Agriculture safe internal cooking temperature for ground beef is 160 degrees. That means its well done. And the cooking time will depend on the thickness of the burger ;but generally at least 5 minutes per side. If you like it at less done than that and depending on the thickness, figure about 3 minutes per side for medium-rare or 130-135 degrees and 150-155 degrees for medium-well.;
;Here’s some recipes to help you out: