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Burger Time: Barbecue Glaze and Burgers to Match

In BBQ - Grilling - Smoking, Burgers, Sandwiches & Dogs, Recipes by Mike StinesLeave a Comment

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Unless you grind your own hamburger (which I highly recommend), your ground beef options are rather limited. For hamburgers that are juicy and flavorful, I suggest ground chuck that’s 80 percent beef and 20 percent fat. If you use a leaner grind, such as ground round or sirloin, the burgers tend to dry out on the grill. If 20 percent fat is too much for you or fish is more to your taste, try this recipe.

Some burger aficionados say nothing should be added to the ground meat mixture, claiming it makes meatloaf patties and not hamburgers. I humbly disagree, as having added flavors incorporated into the ground beef makes for excellent burgers! I do agree not to add salt to the mixture but to liberally apply salt to the outside before cooking.

Barbecue Burgers (Yields four burgers)
This recipe adds a barbecue glaze to the burgers to create true barbecue burgers instead of ground beef on the grill.

1 1/2 pounds ground chuck
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
1/2 cup finely chopped red or green sweet bell pepper
1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack or Jalapeño Jack cheese
1/4 cup finely minced Jalapeño chiles
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
Barbecue Burger Glaze (see below)
Four Miami onion rolls, split

In a medium bowl, combine the chuck, onion, bell pepper, cheese, jalapeños, Worcestershire, pepper, and cumin. Gently mix to combine it all. Form the mixture into 3/4-inch thick patties about 25 percent larger than the Miami rolls. Refrigerate the burgers for at least one hour to allow the fat to congeal.

Prepare the grill for two-level cooking. Clean the grates well and brush them with oil. Season the burgers with coarse kosher salt. Place the patties on the hot side of the grill and cook them about three minutes per side. Move the burgers to the cooler side of the grill, cover, and cook them another three to four minutes or to the desired doneness (the USDA recommends all ground meats be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.).
Butter the rolls and lightly toast them on the hot side of the grill. Remove the rolls and burgers from the grill. Drizzle the burgers with the glaze and serve them.

Barbecue Burger Glaze
3/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon yellow mustard
1 teaspoon chipotle powder

Combine all of the ingredients in a small sauce pan. Bring it to a simmer over medium heat and cook, stirring, for five minutes. Remove the glaze from the stove and reserve it. Serve the sauce warm.

Bonus Track:
Ultimate Backyard Burger
These burgers are perfect for informal backyard gatherings as your guests can add their own toppings to create their perfect burger.

1 1/2 pounds ground chuck
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons granulated onion
1 1/2 teaspoons granulated garlic
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 Miami onion rolls or Sesame seed rolls, split
For the toppings:
8 strips hickory-smoked bacon
2 ripe avocados, sliced
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Coarse kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 large tomato, sliced
8 thin slices red onion
Bread and Butter or dill pickle slices
1 cup crumbled Bleu cheese
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
8 leaves iceberg, romaine or red leaf lettuce, cut to fit the rolls

Fry the bacon in a sauté pan over medium heat until it’s done but not too crisp (about eight minutes). Drain it on paper towels and transfer it to a serving dish.

Sprinkle the avocado with lemon juice to prevent discoloring; transfer it to a serving dish. Season the tomatoes with salt and pepper; transfer them to serving dish. Place the Bleu cheese and cheddar cheese in separate serving dishes. Place the lettuce and onion slices on a small plate.

Brush the cut side of each bun with butter and set them aside.

In a medium mixing bowl, combine the meat with the Worcestershire, onion, garlic and pepper. Quickly form the meat into four patties about 3/4-inch thick and refrigerate them for about one hour.

Preheat the grill for two-level cooking. Lightly toast the buns over the hot side of the grill and remove them. Season the burgers with salt and pepper. Next, sear the patties over the hottest side of the grill for about three minutes per side. Move the burgers to the cooler side of the grill; cover them and cook them another three or four minutes or to the desired degree of doneness.

Finally, place them on the buns. People can grab whatever they want for their burgers from the components on the other serving dishes and chow down.

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Grilling & BBQ Editor | Mike holds a “Doctorate of Barbeque Philosophy” (Ph.B.) degree from the Kansas City Barbeque Society. His book Mastering Barbecue has been called the “go-to” book for BBQ knowledge.

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