Nothing screams summer like burgers on the grill. And nothing can match the taste of a true, homemade, juicy burger stacked with fresh tomato, crisp lettuce, beautifully ripe avocado, and if you’re really indulgent, add some sauteed onions and a little secret sauce. Let the splashing around in the pool, lake, ocean, kiddie pool? begin! It’s summertime! Enjoy it while it’s still here.
With the wonderfully convenient development of the flash frozen hamburger patty, we’ve all gotten sucked into the trap of pulling those suckers out of the freezer, slapping them on the grill, dousing them with a little seasoned salt, flipping once after four minutes, then plopping them on a cold bun and dinner is served in less than 10 minutes. In all honesty, they’re actually not bad, and a great solution when time is of the essence.
But sometimes (well, almost always), it’s worth the additional 15 minutes it takes to make a real, homemade, thick, perfectly grilled, sloppy, messy, backyard burger. Everyone will ohhhh and ahhhh over the rare treat of a homemade grilled burger.
Here are a few tips to making great homemade burgers on the grill:
- Use between 1/4 and 1/3 pound fresh ground beef (at least 15% fat for flavor – none of that lean stuff) for each burger.
- Do not over work the meat as you form the patties. They will be very tough.
- When you shape the patties, press an indentation about the size of a deep thumbprint in the center to prevent the burger from mounding in the middle when it cooks. (There’s some science to this, but I really don’t know what it is. Post a comment below if you can explain it to me!)
- Don’t forget to oil the grates a bit before you toss the burgers on the grill!
- And please don’t over cook them!
Once the grilled burgers are cooked to a perfect medium-rare, lightly toast the buns on the grill while the burgers rest. Then build your masterpiece – secret sauce (explained below – so simple and a great addition to any grilled burger), sauteed onion, crisp lettuce, juicy tomato, ripe avocado. Grab hold of that bad boy and sink your teeth into summertime!