It doesn’t take much to make a good burger- but making a great burger, well, that’s a completely different story. Here are 10 tips for grilled burgers from a true expert: Greg of Ballistic BBQ. With 60+ different burger recipes on his Youtube channel, he definitely knows what he’s talking about.

Best Grilled Burgers: Top 10 Tips From A Burger Pro

Tip #1: Get a good spatula.  It will be one of your most useful tools, and a great help when you are trying to scrape a crusty burger off the grill. Look for a thick spatula with a sharp edge.

Tip #2: Get a meat grinder. Grinding your own burgers means that you know exactly what goes into them. If you do not want to invest in an expensive electric grinder, you can find a hand operated one for ~$20, and that will do fine.

Tip #3: If you are buying pre-ground meat, look for 80/20 ground chuck. Avoid buying meat that is sold in chubs or plastic tubes. That meat is usually so blended up that it will swell up on your grill. Instead, go for the ground meat that looks like it has been extruded from a grinder.

Tip #4: If you decide to grind your own meat, use meat that has a decent amount of marbling in it. Because there is no exact formula for calculating the percentage of fat to lean, you will have to rely on your eyes and your experience. You could use rib-eye or cuts from the tri-tip roast.

Tip #5: While putting the meat in your grinder, keep the mix as even as possible. Try alternating the cuts that go into the grinder· for example, if you put a piece with a lot of fat in it, follow it with one that is on the lean side. Also try this if you are using a variety of meat cuts. For example, when using rib-eye and brisket alternate between the two as you drop them in the grinder.

Tip #6: The key to a good patty is not overworking the ground meat. If you overwork it, the fat and steam will not be able to escape when grilling, and the patty will swell. The average patty is around 8 to 10 ounces, but you can adjust according to the bun you are using.

Tip #7: Make your patties on top of parchment paper. This is especially helpful when making a lot of them, since you can cut around them and stack them to transport or store in the fridge.

Tip #8: Properly set up the lump charcoal/briquettes in your grill. Make sure you have a spot where the radiant heat is still going to allow you to cook, but you will be able to protect the patty from overheating or flares.

Tip #9: Know when you have to flip your patty. Pay close attention to the color change on the side. The meat will become darker starting from the bottom and slowly going towards the top. When the color has almost reached the top, flip it.

Tip #10: Make the molten cheese flow around the patty. To accomplish this, add the cheese after flipping the patty, then cover it. You can use a metal bowl that you have modified with a wooden handle to avoid getting burned. Let the hot air build up for a couple of minutes to evenly melt the cheese all over the patty.

So far, we have covered all the basics of creating a burger. With this information you should be ready to start creating your own grilled burgers!

Here is a quick recipe for those who like to experiment with their grilled burgers. Introducing the Pizza Burger!

  • Season the patty with coarse ground salt, and lay it down. Apply some more salt on the side facing up.
  • Grill some pepperoni to make it nice and crisp.
  • Grill an onion slice and a tomato slice.
  • After flipping the patty, stack the onion and tomato slices on it. Lay down some warm marinara sauce on top, followed by the crisp pepperoni slices and some mozzarella cheese.
  • Cover them with a metal lid as discussed above.
  • Give the buns a toast.
  • Assemble your Pizza Burger!

Are you in the mood to make some burgers yet? If you do, let us know in the comments below, and share a photo on our Facebook page!

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