7 Grilling Tips for Cooking the Perfect Hamburger

Juliet D'cruz

Updated on:

Do you want to step up your grilling game?

Summer is the perfect time to break out the outdoor grill and whip up delicious burgers for everyone to enjoy. They’re easy to cook and you can never go wrong with them. People will surely come back to ask for seconds soon after they finish their plate.

Because of the recent global health crisis, more people have been buying grills, causing a surge in new users. If you’re one of these new users, you may want to know some grilling tips to get you started.

Read what we’ve prepared below to learn how to cook amazingly flavorful burgers. Become a hamburger grill master today!

  1. Choose Your Own Beef

Grilling the best burgers means making your patties from scratch. Buying pre-made patties is a viable option, but doing so means you don’t control some factors that can elevate your burger’s taste. To start, pick a good cut from your local butcher.

You’ll want a cut that’s the right mix of fat and lean meat. The fat from the cut will make the burger juicier as you grill it. Beef fat also creates drippings that further improve the burgers’ taste if you’re cooking on a charcoal grill.

The ground chuck is an excellent choice for hamburgers. These cuts are from the shoulder of a cow, which means it contains up to 20 percent fat. You’ll surely make juicy and tender burgers with this cut.

  1. Mix Your Patties

With your choice of beef on hand, make your burger patties. Doing this is best as you’ll have more control over how much fat or collagen you’ll put into the meat. This also allows you to add any seasonings you want into the patty to give them your signature taste profile.

When doing so, be careful not to overwork your meat. Overworking your meat means you’ll break down more collagen and fat even before you set them down on the grill. This will result in dry burgers you’ll have a tough time chewing.

For better results, work your patties only as you need to. Add in whatever seasonings you want and shape them before leaving them to rest. You’ll want each patty to be around 1 inch thick, so they come out nice and juicy from the grill. 

Another tip we have to share is to make an indent on your patty as you shape it. This will prevent it from puffing up as they cook. In the end, you’ll produce nice, even patties to put toppings on before serving. 

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  1. Clean Your Grill Before Cooking

Cleaning your grill serves two purposes. First, it allows you to cook your burgers evenly throughout. A dirty grill will have debris that can impede the transfer of heat.

This causes you to have burgers that will have charred areas. Not to mention the debris can also pose a serious health risk to you and everyone you’re serving. 

A clean grill also helps in preventing backyard fires. Dirty grills can cause flare-ups as you cook, which is why summer is the peak season for grilling fires.

  1. Put the Patties on the Grill Cold

When you’re ready to cook, you’ll want to take your patties out of the fridge so they’re not too cold as they hit the grill. However, you don’t want your patties to be at room temperature before you grill them.

You’ll want to give them at least 2 minutes before placing them on the grill. Cooking them cold is the best way to prevent them from losing too much juice on the grill. 

A cold start on a hot grill will also help promote the Maillard reaction. This will help the patty develop a caramelized crust while maintaining a juicy, pinkish interior.

  1. Manage Your Grill’s Temperature

The secret to cooking is temperature control. You’ll want a grill that’s hot enough to cook the burger quickly, but not hot enough that it will burn the exterior before cooking the interior.

Medium-low heat is the ideal temperature for cooking hamburgers. Use a temperature scanner to make sure the grill is around 300 F before placing your patties. 

Employ a two-zone cooking method, too. This means you’ll have a side of the grill that’s under direct heat, and another under indirect heat. This method allows you to pull away patties that are at risk of burning to finish cooking on the indirect side.

  1. Leave Your Patties to Cook

The biggest mistake most people make is agitating their patties too often. People think they should keep flipping the patties to cook evenly. Some even press down on the meat for one reason or another.

Doing the former can cause your patties to fall apart. Moving them around when they’re not fully cooked can cause them to stick to the grill or crumble. Meanwhile, pressing your patties on the grill will cause them to lose more juice, drying them out.

Instead, place the patties on the grill and close the lid to leave them to cook. The general rule of thumb is you need to only flip them once while grilling.

Take a peek by lifting the burger a bit before deciding to flip. If it still sticks to the grill, then leave it a little longer to firm up.

  1. Serve the Burgers Immediately

Letting your burgers sit is a surefire way to serve dry burgers to your guests. Serve them as soon as they’re off the grill to make sure the first bite is always perfect. 

This means you’ll want to have your buns and other toppings prepared as they finish cooking. If you’re in a bit of a pickle, you can always follow the recipes of the local flavors around your area. Click here for best burger in Middle TN for an example of such.

Apply These Grilling Tips Today

People will never get over your burgers once you learn and apply these grilling tips. Create the juiciest and most delectable burgers on your summer grill today!

Burgers aren’t the only thing you can make on a summer grill. Learn more tips, tricks, and even recipes by checking out more of our posts and articles today! 

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