Best Hamburger Patty Recipe
Best Hamburger Patty Recipe Thick or thin, made on the grill or stovetop, this is the best and easiest all-purpose recipe for perfect hamburger patties every time! These juicy, delicious homemade hamburgers are ready in less than 30 minutes and are a must-make for your next cookout.
Close your eyes, and picture the perfect hamburger.
Is it a thin diner-style hamburger patty, or a thick steakhouse-sized burger? Seared to the peak of juiciness on a grill or in a flat griddle?
With or without cheese?!
Make burgers your way and have them come out flawless every time with what I consider to be the Best Hamburger Patty Recipe, in my humble opinion.
Its a classic all-American recipe for mouthwatering burgers that can be cooked on the grill, on the stovetop, as thick 1/3 pound patties, or as ultra-thin griddle patties.
Get ready, because you are about to make the burger of your dreams, people!
Can I Freeze Burger Patties
Yes, you can. I prefer to freeze uncooked patties than cooked ones. It stays moist compared to cooked patties.
Form patties and place on a tray and freeze for about 5 minutes.
Once hard, place cut parchment paper or foil in between patties and place in a zip lock bag or well sealed container. Freeze up to a month.
When freezing hamburger patties or any meat mixture, I prefer to use a food saver. It keeps it moist and it freezes well up to 2 months.
How Long To Grill Burgers
In general, follow these total grilling times:
- For rare burgers, cook for 4 minutes total
- For medium-rare burgers, cook for 5 minutes total
- For medium burgers, cook for 6 to 7 minutes total
- For well-done burgers, cook for 8 to 9 minutes total
Please note that the USDA recommends cooking ground meats to an internal temperature of at least 160°F, which is well done without any pink in the center. Cooking burgers to other degrees of doneness should be done at the cook’s discretion.
All this said, ultimately, the time it takes for a hamburger to reach a certain temperature depends on how hot your grill is and how thick your patty is. In my tests, my 1-inch thick, 4-inch diameter patties were medium done at 5 minutes total , and well done at 6 minutes total .
Raichlen suggests checking the temperature of the burger by inserting the meat thermometer through the side, not through the top this gives you a more accurate reading. You can also use Elises handy dandy finger-test guide.
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Secret #: Perfectly Shaped Patties
Ever wonder how restaurants make perfect burger patties? Most of them use a lid to mold the burgers. In addition to making uniformly sized patties, this method also makes it hard to overwork or overheat the mixture.
Almost any lid will do. A large peanut butter jar lid lined with plastic wrap makes perfect patties at home.
Secret #1: Carefully Consider Your Toppings
Whats so amazing about a a classic burger? Everything melds together so you get every flavor in each bite. Juicy meat, melty cheese, a chewy bun, a tangy picklebliss. If you pile on too many toppings, they compete with each other-and with the beef.
Our favorite formula for a good burger? Add one topping from each of these categories: savory and rich creamy and cool crispy and fresh and sharp . Thatll create the perfect balanced bite.
Now that you know how to grill the perfect patty, check out our step-by-step guide with instructions for making burgers on the stove or in the oven, plus recipes for our favorite homemade burger sauces.
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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.
The Best Hamburger Patties
What makes this absolutely the Best Hamburger Patty Recipe?
These burgers offer a rich and meaty taste, with a punch of zesty herbs that can be customized with your preferred flavors. A few simple key ingredients help to consistently create juicy hamburger patties, no matter which cooking method you prefer.
And while youll love the terrific savoriness of these homemade hamburgers on their own, they are excellent for loading with your favorite toppings to create truly one helluva great burger. This is sure to be your go-to recipe for easy burger patties from scratch!
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Secret #: Choose Your Beef Wisely
First of all, fat is flavor. A lean burger might sound good in theory, but its the fat that makes this sandwich juicy and delicious. Without fat, you end up with a mealy, dry burger. An 80 percent fat/20 percent lean mix is juicy, cooks up nicely, and is just indulgent enough without creating a greasy experience.
Now lets talk grain- vs. grass-fed. While its widely debated which makes the better burger, I stand firm that grass-fed flavor cant be beaten. If youre not a fan, make sure you spring for a quality grain-fed beef. Whatever your preference, opt for quality. You simply cant make a good burger with bad beef.
Shaping & Seasoning Hamburgers
STEP 1: Place the ground beef in a large mixing bowl.
STEP 2: Add the garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, and Worcestershire sauce.
STEP 3: Gently mix the spices into the ground beef. Be careful not to overmix the meat, because that can lead to your burgers falling apart while cooking.
STEP 4: Form the meat into a large patty and place it on a cutting board.
STEP 5: Cut the patty into 4 equal triangles, and then shape each triangle into a hamburger patty. Each patty should be about 6 ounces. Use a food scale to weigh each one to ensure they are all about the same size.
STEP 6: Use either your thumb or the back of a spoon, and press it into the center of each hamburger patty. This ensures it from bulging while cooking.
STEP 7: Place the patties into the fridge until ready to cook.
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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
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 .
How To Tell When A Burger Is Done
In the photo below, youre looking at somewhere between medium-well and well. We really like to shoot for medium. A great way to do this is to use a meat thermometer. Ive shared the temperature of burgers when they are rare, medium-rare, medium, medium-well, and well-done below.
- Rare: Red in the center, 120 degrees F and below
- Medium-Rare: Very Pink in the center, 130 degrees F
- Medium: Pink in the center, 140 degrees F
- Medium-Well: Grayish Pink in the center, 150 degrees F
- Well Done: Gray, No Pink in the center, 160 degrees F and above
Note: The USDA suggests cooking ground beef to 160 degrees F, this is well-done. Thats just too done for us, which gives even more reason to buy the highest quality meat you can.
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Can You Freeze Hamburgers
You can absolutely freeze hamburger patties, but its best if you freeze the burgers while they are raw and not cooked.
To Freeze: Place pieces of parchment in between the hamburger patties and wrap them completely. Then place them in a Ziploc bag and freeze for up to 3 months.
To Thaw: Leave on the counter to thaw, or thaw in the fridge overnight.
Handle That Meat Mixture With Care
Ground beef consists of both lean meat and fat. The goal is for the two parts to stick together once pressed.
If the patties are overworked, the resulting hamburger will be dry and crumbly. The secret to a tender burger is handling the beef as little as possible: place the beef in a large bowl, and then gently fold any seasonings into the ground beef. Dont spend more than 30-45 seconds mixing.
To tell if the beef is mixed properly, Senior Editor Summer Miller recommends scooping a tablespoon of mixture, pressing it between your palms, and then turning your hand over. If the meat sticks, then it’s well mixed and ready to be pressed into patties.
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More Easy Ways To Season Ground Beef Patties
The basic salt and pepper tastes just great in these ground beef hamburger patties. But, if youre a spice-aholic like me, here are more seasonings you can add:
- For campfire burger vibes: liquid smoke and hickory smoked black pepper.
- For an enhanced flavor, add some worcestershire sauce and garlic powder.
- Adding spice blend thats on the spicy side? Add a little brown sugar to balance out the heat.
If you really want a good burger with surprisingly juicy flavor, check out how to finish hamburgers with a mayo sear.
Charcoal Vs Gas Grill
For Raichlan, the best choice for grilling burgers is always wood or charcoal because of the additional flavor and charring that happens with those grills.
Its more versatile. You get a hotter, drier heat which give you a better sear, Raichlan said. If you use charcoal, you can add different kinds of wood to contribute to the smokiness and enhance the overall flavor of the burger.
However, millions of Americans prefer gas grills because they are easy to use, and you dont have as much of a mess. Dont worryyou can still cook a great burger on a gas grill!
- To grill with charcoal or wood, Raichlan recommends investing in a chimney starter. Its a tall box or cylinder with holes in it. Paper is crumpled up in the bottom and the coals reset on top. Position the chimney starter on the bottom of grate of your grill, and light the paper. You will have hot coals in 15 to 20 minutes.
- If you’re using a gas grill, open the lid, turn on the gas, and light the grill. You want to get your grill up to 450 to 500 degrees before adding your patties.
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Secret #: The Doughnut Hole Vs The Dimple
You may have heard about this trick: Create a hole or just poke a dimple in the center of the patty, and the burger cooks more evenly and keeps the center from bulging up. Heres when to use each method:
If youre cooking outside on the grill, just press a shallow dimple into the middle of your patty. The air circulates through the grill grates and around the burger, making a hole unnecessary.
If youre grilling inside on a cast-iron pan or griddle, make a complete hole in the center of the patty. It promotes airflow through the inside of the burger, cooking the inside and outside at an even rate.
The Best Ground Beef To Buy
taste of hometaste of home
You cant make a great grilled burger without tasty beef. Sure, you can dress-up ground beef with Worcestershire and garlic powder, but the seasonings arent the star of the burger: The beef is. So skip the bargain-bin and buy the best quality beef you can afford. That might be grass-fed beef if you prefer meatier, pastoral flavors, or grain-finished options if you like a sweeter, richer taste.
When it comes to fat content, youll also want to take a pass on lean offerings. The best-grilled burgers weve had are juicy and rich, and that comes from fat. Ground beef with 20 to 25% fat is just about perfect, so look for an 80/20 blend. More fat and the burger can fall apart. Less fat and the burger will turn out dry. If your butcher will grind beef to order, ask for a coarsely ground chuck roast, or a mixture of brisket and sirloin.
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The Keys To Making The Hamburgers
Type of Beef To Use
First of all, be sure to use ground beef that has a lean-to-fat ratio of 80/20.
You want to have this percentage of fat to help keep the texture moist. Not to mention, the little bit of fat will add a little extra flavor to your burger.
If you use ground sirloin that has a typical 90/10 ratio, your grilled hamburgers will most likely turn out dry and crumbly.
Now that you know the best type of ground beef to use, it is time to add a little flavor to your homemade hamburgers.
Instead of going overboard with seasonings that over power the taste of a grilled burger, we prefer to keep it simple.
A little minced garlic and onion adds a delicious, yet subtle flavor to your burgers.
But the true secret seasoning that makes these grilled hamburgers the best ever is Worcestershire sauce!
The sauce adds a hint of savory and sweet flavors along with a distinct tang that makes your mouth water as you take each bite.
In fact, these burgers are so delicious that ketchup, mustard, or A-1 sauce is not even necessary!
Forming the Patties
Now that you have the ingredients, you must know that there are a couple of secrets to making the best homemade grilled hamburgers.
First of all, just like when making meatloaf, you do not want to overmix the meat.
Mixing your ingredients too much is a very common mistake that can really make hamburgers turn out with a tough, dry texture.
Just mix the ingredients until incorporated and then form the patties.
How Long Does It Take To Grill The Perfect Hamburger
Grilled hamburgers are perfect for small backyard barbecues and giant neighborhood block parties alike. So, how long it takes to grill the perfect burger? Knowing how long to grill hamburgers is a must for any griller. But, grill times can vary based on the thickness of the patty, the kind of meat you use to make them, and just how you exactly you want your burger to be cooked. Follow these tips to ensure your patties come out just the way you like them.
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Keep Burgers Cold Until They Hit The Grill
Unlike other meats that will cook up better if brought to room temperature before hitting the grill, you want those patties cold so they stay together and stay as juicy as possible. Put the patties on a tray or platter, covered, in the fridge while the grill heats up. This helps more of the flavor-carrying fat stay in the meat.
When To Toast The Buns
Im a toasted brioche bun kind of girl. They are rich with butter and sturdy enough to hold all of my fixings and my burger, but also they squish down and are easy to bite through.
Whichever buns you prefer, butter the top and bottom of the bun, and then plop them on the back of the grill, out of direct heat, until they are golden. Start toasting the buns when you have a minute left on the patties.
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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
The Secret To Making Hamburger Patties At Home
The star of your average backyard barbecue will always be the hamburger. Even more so than steak in some cases, hamburgers are the most coveted item at the cookout. Despite this, it’s not quite as common as one would hope to be able to find a truly excellent burger in a backyard. So what makes a great burger? How to keep hamburgers from falling apart? Let’s answer these questions!
What this comes down to is a lack of technique. Despite how they may appear, good burgers are more than just tossing some meat onto the fire. There’s an art to making patties that many people just can’t seem to get the hang of.
What do you have to do to get perfect hamburger patties? What do you need to make them? How do you prepare the best burger where everything – from hamburger buns to the side dish – is just perfect? Let’s answer these questions and more as we explain how to make hamburger patties.
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