Making hamburgers on the grill is considered an art form to some, and it can be as simple or as complicated as you'd like. This is the recipe I use to produce the perfect, juicy grilled hamburgers on my Weber Kettle charcoal grill. I usually like to keep things simple, with just some seasoning and quality chuck, but today I kicked it up by adding in some chopped bacon. These burgers are ideal for tailgating and parties but they're also perfect for just a mid-week dinner as well.
Ingredients for Burger Patty
- 2 lbs 80/20 ground chuck
- 1 ½ tsp coarse salt
- ¾ tsp fresh cracked black pepper
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 lb thick cut bacon, precooked & chilled
- 6 hamburger buns
Ingredients for Burger Toppings (optional)
- Baby arugula
- Cheddar cheese, thin sliced
- Red onion, thinly sliced
- Tomato, thinly sliced
Items You'll Need
- Pre-blend black pepper, cayenne, and coarse salt together and set aside.
- Break up the ground beef into looser pieces, and lay it out evenly in a sheet pan. This will make it easier to blend in our seasoning evenly.
- Sprinkle in half of your seasoning blend and half of the chopped bacon bits.
- Give the meat a light mix, avoid overworking the meat, this will dry it out.
- Sprinkle in the remaining half of the seasoning blend and bacon bits, and toss to incorporate.
- Portion out 6 loosely packed meatballs, this will make it easy to add any remaining meat to each meatball so that your patties come out even.
- Take each meatball and gently press them out into patties only a couple of times, again avoid over compressing the meat so that it remains juicy.
- Make a thumb indentation in the center of each patty, this allows the burgers to cook flat instead of ending up looking like a tennis ball.
- Avoid lighter fluid when lighting charcoal, all you need is some paper towel pieces and a chimney starter.
- Allow all of your natural lump charcoal to get lit and pour them out on the base of the grill in a pile.
- (Optional:) Depending on your grill size, you may need to add another chimney full of unlit charcoal to the stack of lit charcoal.
- Allow the unlit charcoal to catch fire, and spread all of the lit coals across the grill.
- Place the grids on the grill, and close the lid to allow the grill to preheat for about 5 minutes.
- Once preheated, place your burgers across the grill and allow them to sear with the lid open so that they get a great flame broil.
- Once the burgers have juices rising to the top, and the sides begin to grey, they are ready to flip.
- Once the second side of the burgers has a nice sear, move them to the outer edges of the kettle grill.
- Place the lid on and shut the top and bottom vents down to only a slight crack opening. This will dwell down the temperature and allow the burgers to finish cooking with a great amount of smoke flavor.
- After 2-5 minutes of smoke, the burgers should be ready to come off.
- Place the burgers on a sheet pan and rest them for 5 minutes while you toast your buns. This is a good time to put some sliced cheese on the patties so that it melts while the burgers rest.
- Dress your burger with your desired toppings, serve, and enjoy!
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