Grilling burgers is easy and fun just by following a few simple guidelines. This article will guide you through choosing the best meat, making burger meat, and grilling it on the stove, gas grill, or charcoal grill. Add seasonings and create creative toppings to create delicious burgers for a garden party or to accompany the family on a relaxing evening.
- 900 gr ground beef (for 8 servings)
- Seasonings, such as salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, roast beef sauce, barbecue sauce, onions (optional)
- Cheese (optional)
- 8 burger buns
Method 1 of 5: Preparing the Burger Meat
Step 1. Buy good quality ground beef
Start with the right kind of meat and you're half way there to a great burger. If you want to process food by grilling, you should start with fresh quality meat. If possible, ask the butcher to grind the meat while you wait. Look for meat with a fat percentage of around 20-25% so that you get the tastiest burger meat.
- You can choose meat with less fat content if you want. Lean meats aren't really ideal for burgers because burgers are often grilled at very high temperatures. Meat with less fat will dry out when grilled.
- If you can't get fresh ground beef, choose meat with a bright pink color. Ground meat that is starting to turn gray in color has probably been on the shelf for days.
- Try ground chicken or turkey if you don't want to eat red meat.
- You can also use ready-made frozen burgers.
Step 2. Add the spices to the fresh ground beef
Mash 900g of ground beef in a large bowl and sprinkle with about teaspoon salt and teaspoon black pepper. Use your hands to mix the ground beef and be careful not to overcook it. Gently knead the meat until the spices are evenly distributed.
- Try to process the meat for a while. The heat from the hands can actually melt the fat in the meat, causing a denser burger.
- Use the amount of seasoning according to taste. Try adding a little sage powder or chili powder.
- If you're using frozen burgers, you can season them while they're grilling.
Step 3. Form the burger meat
Take about 115 grams of ground beef and shape it into a ball. Carefully press the meat ball with both hands until it reaches a thickness of about 1.5 cm. Press the burger meat as flat as possible.
- Use your thumb or spoon to make a shallow indentation (about 5 cm wide) in the center of the burger. This will help the meat cook more evenly and prevent the meat from bulging in the middle.
- The burger meat will shrink slightly as it cooks. Use the burger bun as a guide and shape the burger meat slightly wider than the diameter of the bun. That way, you'll get a burger that fits the size of the bun after it's cooked.
Method 2 of 5: Grilling Burgers on a Charcoal Grill
Step 1. Arrange the charcoal
Arrange for the charcoal to spread over the two fire zones. This means that you should set the charcoal to cover only about half of the grill, creating a medium to high heat zone.
You can use any type of charcoal for grilling. Self-igniting charcoal is usually easier to use
Step 2. Light the charcoal
Use a match or lighter to light the edges of some of the charcoal. The flames will grab the other charcoal in the pile.
Step 3. Light the charcoal with lighter fluid (optional)
If the charcoal can be ignited with lighter fluid, spray the liquid over the top and sides of the charcoal pile. Spray the lighter fluid slowly and wait a minute or two for the liquid to seep into the charcoal. This will prevent all of the liquid from burning immediately. After a few minutes, spray a second coat, then continue with a third before lighting the charcoal. Do not spray too much liquid into the charcoal each time you make the coating. Using less lighter fluid would be better. Too much lighter fluid will give the burger a chemical taste.
You don't need too much lighter fluid to keep the fire burning. Just use about 47 ml of lighter fluid for every half kilogram of charcoal
Step 4. Let the charcoal heat up
Charcoal takes time to generate heat and will not be ready immediately after being ignited. Wait until the flames subside and the edges of the charcoal turn gray. The entire surface of the charcoal will be coated in gray ash after about 10 minutes. Now the charcoal fire is ready to use for grilling burgers.
Step 5. Grill the burgers
Place the burger meat on the grill and grill it directly over the charcoal pile. This is the hottest part of the grill. Bake the burgers for 5 minutes or until they are lightly browned and the bottoms are crispy.
- Take care not to burn the meat and don't press the meat with a spatula. This action will cause all the delicious liquid to come out.
- During the roasting process, you will see flames. Do not worry. Flames occur because fat drips into the fire. Move the burgers to the cooler side of the grill if the flames are too high. Move the meat back to its original place once the flames subside.
Step 6. Turn the burger meat over
Use a long-handled metal spatula to flip the burger once. Bake the other side of the meat on the hot grill for 1 minute to lock the liquid in the meat.
Step 7. Make a cheeseburger (optional)
Once the burgers are almost done, now is the perfect time to add a layer of cheese and let them melt completely. Place a sheet of cheese in the center of each meat and continue the roasting process while the cheese melts.
Step 8. Toast the bread (optional)
Baking bread can be done quickly and easily. You simply open the slice of bread and place it on the grill with the inside facing down. You should place it on the cooler side of the grill so it doesn't burn or bake too quickly. Bake the bread for about 10 seconds and you can flip it if you want.
- You can lightly spread the butter on the inside of the bread before baking it if you like.
- Pay close attention to the bread because it burns very easily.
Step 9. Cover the burger meat and continue the cooking process
Once the burgers are grilled, move them to the cooler side of the grill so they won't be on the direct heat and cover them. Continue the roasting process for 3 to 5 minutes until it's done. Here's how to check if the burger meat is done:
- Take one burger meat and cut it. If you want medium-rare meat, the inside should be pink, but no blood.
- Use a meat thermometer with instant measurements. According to the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture), the recommended temperature for the inside of meat is 71 °C.
Step 10. Enjoy
Remove the burger meat from the grill when it is cooked. Don't overcook the meat. Keep in mind that the cooking process will continue for some time after the meat has been removed from the grill. Serve the burger by adding other complementary seasonings.
Method 3 of 5: Grilling Burger Meats on a Gas Grill
Step 1. Preheat the grill
Turn on the grill and set the setting to high heat. Cover the grill and let it sit for 10-15 minutes for the grill to heat up. Scrub the grill rack with a wire brush until clean. Grease the grill rack with oil to prevent the meat from sticking (optional).
Step 2. Grill the burger meat
Place the burgers on a grill rack and broil one side for 3 minutes. Do not press down on the burger meat during the roasting process.
- You may see flames blazing during baking. The flames were caused by the fat of the meat dripping into the fire below. Carefully transfer the burgers to a higher rack or to a cooler part of the grill until the flames subside.
- If you're using a gas grill, the cooler area is usually on a higher rack, or on the edge of the grill away from the fire.
Step 3. Turn the burger meat over
Use a metal spatula with a long handle to flip the burger meat over and sear the other side while locking in the meat liquid. Continue the roasting process until you reach the desired level of doneness. You can consider the following guidelines:
- Bake for about 3½ minutes for medium-rare doneness. Burger meat can be removed after the temperature inside reaches 55-57 °C.
- Bake the meat for about 4 minutes for medium doneness. Burger meat can be removed after the temperature inside reaches 57-65°C.
- Bake the meat for about 4 minutes or longer to get it to medium well done. Burger meat can be removed after the temperature inside reaches 65-74 °C.
- Burgers reach well done doneness once the inside temperature reaches 74 °C or more. Serve immediately.
- Add the cheese sheet on top of the burger meat at the last minute of baking so that the cheese has had enough time to melt.
- Toast the bread on a cooler side of the grill or on a higher rack at the last minute of the baking process. You can spread a little butter on the inside of the bread if you like.
Method 4 of 5: Burning Burger Meat on the Stove
Step 1. Heat the frying pan
For best results, use a cast-iron frying pan. If you don't have one, you can use any fryer.
If you're using a cast-iron skillet, you can speed up the heating process by placing it in an oven preheated to 176 °C for 20 minutes. Remove the frying pan using cooking gloves. Heating the meat in a very hot cast iron skillet is the key to success
Step 2. Do a test to make sure the frying pan is hot
Add a little cooking oil to the frying pan. No more than 1 tablespoon (14 ml). If the oil smokes, the frying pan is a little too hot. Remove the fryer from the stove for a few minutes and try again. If the oil droplets are evenly distributed and shiny, the frying pan is ready to go!
Step 3. Grill the burgers
Place the burger meat in the middle of the frying pan and cook until done. Fried meat will sizzle when it hits the frying pan, it can even emit smoke. This is a good sign. Cook the burgers for about 4 minutes.
Do not poke or push the burger meat. Do not press the meat into the frying pan. Leave the burger meat in the frying pan until it forms a delicious thick crust that will lock in the flavours
Step 4. Turn the burger meat over
Just do it once. If the underside of the meat starts to brown, flip the burger over. Cook the other side for another 4 minutes.
- If you want to add cheese sheets, a good time is the last few minutes. Place the cheese sheet on top of the burger and let it melt completely in the last few minutes of cooking.
- You'll get a medium-rare burger if the temperature on the inside reaches 55-57 °C.
- You will get a medium burger if the temperature inside reaches 57-65°C.
- You'll get a medium well burger if the temperature inside reaches 65-74 °C.
- You'll get a well done burger if the temperature inside reaches 74 °C or more.
Method 5 of 5: Adding Variations
Step 1. Get creative with burger meat
You can try turkey, ground chicken, or even Italian sausage (unwrap it and use the meat inside the seasoned sausage to make a burger patty).
- If you're using chicken, turkey, or lean meat, mix the breadcrumbs into the meat so it sticks well and doesn't break during baking.
- You can even add chopped onions, garlic, or bell peppers to the burger mix. Pour your creativity!
Step 2. Season the burger meat
Add sauce or other seasonings to the meat mixture before grilling. Experiment with plain meat or try adding your favorite seasoning before grilling it. Here are some classic burger seasonings that many love (try adding a few teaspoons or about 14g of seasoning when experimenting with your preferred flavor. Don't overdo it):
- Salt and pepper
- Finely chopped onions
- Salty soy sauce
- English soy sauce
- BBQ sauce
- Grilled meat sauce
Step 3. Add toppings at will
Make sure you add the usual toppings, such as lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and pickled cucumbers. Don't stop there. Try adding mushrooms, peppers, or grilled onions. Or, add sliced avocado or hot chili. The options are almost endless. Be creative to your heart's content.
Step 4. Experiment with different sauces
The same burger can produce completely different flavors with the addition of sauce. Popular sauce options include ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, barbecue sauce, chili sauce, or even grilled meat sauce.
Step 5. Use wood chips if you are using a charcoal grill
Throw the Black Cherry wood chip into the charcoal once it's hot. This step will give the burger a smoky flavor. If you are using a gas grill, place the Black Cherry wood chips on the surface of the grill, not on the fire. Or, use a pre-perforated aluminum pie plate, fill it with Black Cherry wood chips and place it on the grill surface.
Many people prefer the flavor or meat grilled over wood charcoal to traditional briquettes
Step 6. Done
- Don't let other people dictate what you put on top of your burger, make your own burger creations that you love!
- Remember, touch the meat as little as possible when forming the burger meat and do not poke or push the meat during the grilling process.
- Make sure you don't crush the burger while cutting it before serving.
- Baked food is perfect for dieting because it contains less fat than food cooked in other ways and tastes very delicious.
- If you use a meat thermometer to check for doneness, follow these guidelines: Medium-rare: 55-57 °C, medium: 57-65 °C, medium well: 65-74 °C, well done: 74 °C or more.
- Don't forget to wash your hands before and after handling raw meat.
- Never spray lighter fluid into a blazing fire or hot charcoal.
- If you drink alcohol while grilling, be sure not to spill the highly flammable beverage on the fire.
- Do not eat ground meat that has not been cooked to avoid food-borne diseases.
- Do not add lighter fluid or ignite while food is on the grill.
- Be careful that raw meat or objects that have come into contact with raw meat do not touch other surfaces. The USDA recommends that all ground beef be cooked to at least medium doneness, or until the inside temperature of the meat reaches 74 °C. If you like medium-rare burgers, try as much as possible to get the meat fresh and from a reliable source.