How to Make a Burger Patty - And Grill the Perfect Burger
Start with quality ground beef with a higher fat content, some salt and pepper, and perhaps some dried spices, and you're ready. Grilling the burger takes hardly any time. Whether this is your first time in front of the grill, or you're just looking to see if you can improve your output a little, here's everything you need to know to start turning out fantastic, juicy burgers.
Separate ground beef into four 6-ounce portions, and loosely shape into patties roughly as big around as the buns you're using, and about 1/2 inch thick.
Make a small concave indentation into the middle of each patty. This will help the burger from doming when they cook.
Salt patties liberally on both sides. Season with pepper and spices, if desired.
Set up a grill for direct cooking and heat to medium-high. Once hot, lightly brush grill grates with oil. Note: The oil will smoke.
Grill burgers between 3 and 5 minutes per side. Check for desired doneness with an instant-read meat thermometer inserted into the side of the burger. For rare burgers, cook to an internal temperature of 120°F. For medium rare: 130°F. For medium: 140°F. For medium-well: 150°F. To ensure a burger is well done, cook to 160°F. Don't cook over 160°F, or the burger will become dry.
Two things to remember when making burger patties is don't overwork the meat, and don't salt the meat until after the patty is formed. When handled too much, ground beef becomes tough.
A method used to avoid overworking the meat: Form it into a loose ball, then drop it from about 10-12 inches onto a clean surface. Pick it up, flip it over, and drop it again on the other side. Finally, round out the edges with your fingers, so it's about the size of your burger's bun.
Press down lightly into the center, creating a small indent. The center will puff when it cooks, so this helps keep the burger from doming. Then, generously coat each side of patty with salt, add some pepper and additional spices if using.