How to Grill the Best Burgers
Summer may be over, but that does not mean we have to stop grilling! On the cold days, why not warm up with a perfectly grilled burger?
Burgers are one of the first foods most people think of when they hear the word grill. There are a ton of grill ready frozen patties out there. These frozen patties are convenient, but the best burgers are the ones made of fresh meat.
Everyone has an idea of what makes the best burger, too. Some like a nice char on the outside. While others prefer a softer, juicier, bite. The burger chef has a lot to do with the quality of the cook. But the equipment used to cook a burger is just as important. You can easily cook a tasty burger inside on the stovetop. But where is the fun in that? You miss out on the joy of the outdoor cooking experience. The Outdoor Appliance Store is here to help you learn how to make the best burger. We are going to give you, the burger chef, our “how-to” on grilling the best burgers. We are also here to help supply you with top of the line equipment.
For this burger recipe, we will be making four burgers. You will need:
1 lb of ground beef. Use about ¼ pound per patty. You want meat that is 70-80% lean and 20-30% fat. Meat that is too lean grills up tough and chewy. A decent fat content helps the burger stay juicy.
Choice of seasoning. We like to mix onion powder into our ground beef for an added blast of flavor, but this is really up to personal taste. Salt and pepper are fine.
Condiments: ketchup, mustard, hot sauce, etc.
Burger toppings: tomato, onion, pickle, lettuce, etc.
Prepping Your Burger
Prep time: 10 minutes
Prepping your burger and washing your hands are your first steps. Whenever dealing with raw meat, cleanliness is important. It is always a good idea to wash your hands before touching the burger meat and after.
For our burgers, we add garlic powder. Feel free to skip this step. Place all meat into a bowl. Dump in garlic powder or your choice of seasoning. With washed or gloved hands, mix the seasoning into your meat thoroughly.
Once you season your meat, you can divide it up into your burgers. Split your pound of ground beef into four equal sections of meat. Do not worry about being perfect. Just split it up as evenly as you can. Each one of these sections is about one-quarter pound. Roll each quarter-pound into a ball. Flatten each section into an even patty. You want it to be about a half-inch to a three quarter inch thickness. Be careful not to make your edges too thin. Thin spots will cook much faster. Thin spots burn before the thicker parts have a chance to cook.
Avoid making your burger too thick, as well. A burger patty that is too thick will lead to uneven cooking. The outside will char while the inside will stay raw. You want a burger that is pretty in pink, not still mooing.
Now that your patties are ready, we can move on to how to prep your grill.
Prepping Your Grill
Clean hands are important for preparing food. A clean grill is important, too. It does not matter if you are cooking with charcoal, gas, wood-burning, or electric. A clean grill is a happy grill.
The material of your grill grates makes a slight difference in how you clean them. But in general, an easy, quick way to clean up is with the burn-off method. It is best to clean up directly after cooking as well as before. Turn your grill on high. Keep the lid open. Let all the leftover food or grease burn off. Turn the heat off. Let the grill cool slightly. Scrub any remaining residue with a grill brush. No grill brush? Use a pair of tongs to grip some aluminum foil. Scrub with the foil.
Grilling Your Burger
Cook time: 6-10 minutes
Once your grill is clean, heat it back up to high heat. The goal heat is 450 degrees Fahrenheit. You can get a general idea of temperature with a quick hand test. Do not touch the grill directly, but place your hand over the heat. You should only be able to hold your hand over the heat for about a second once the grill is hot enough.
Go ahead and place your burgers in the middle of the grill. Do not use your spatula to push down on the burger patty. This does not make it cook faster. It does push out the delicious juices, though.
Grill your burger for three minutes per side. This makes your burger a perfect medium rare plus. For a more well-done burger, increase the cooking time. We recommend no more than 5 minutes on each side. You only need to flip your burger once.
Remove patties from the grill and place on a plate to rest. Letting the burgers rest before serving allows the meat to settle. It also allows the flavorful juices to distribute fully. And it gives you a chance to throw your buns on the grill. Butter the inside of your buns. Place the buns butter side down on the grill. Allow them to lightly toast and remove.
You are now ready to serve the best burger!
Easy Read Recipe
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 6-10 minutes
Mix 1 lb ground meat and seasoning in a large mixing bowl with your hands.
Divide the meat into four equal sections. Roll each section into a ball. Flatten each ball into a patty shape. Try not to overwork the meat. Keep your patties as even as possible. Avoid thin or thick areas. Aim for about a half-inch in thickness.
Heat your grill to high heat, roughly 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
Grill burger patties for 3 minutes per side. Only flip once. Add more time for a more well-done burger.
Remove patties from the grill and let rest for several minutes.
Butter the insides of your buns and toast them lightly on the grill.
Serve burger patties with your choice of toppings and condiments.