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Want to know the secret to perfect barbecued hamburgers? Keep it simple. Don’t mess with fillers, eggs, Worcestershire or fancy seasonings. Just fire up the barbecue, patty up some great quality ground chuck, season with salt and pepper and you’ll be wowed by the juicy outcome.

Photo Blog Hamburgers Perfect Burgers Beef

Feel like raising the stakes? That’s where your condiment choices come into play. I’ve listed some naughty and nice options below — great fun for mixing and matching. Or, think of some unique ideas to call your own. Whatever you do, just make your burgers soon. Barbecue season won’t last forever. (Waaaaah!)

Photo Blog Hamburgers Perfect Burgers Beef

Perfect Burgers

(serves 4)

1-1/4 lb. lean ground chuck beef
Kosher salt
A few grinds of cracked pepper
4 hamburger buns

Step 1: Preheat barbecue to medium heat.

Step 2: Shape fresh ground chuck into four equal burgers, about 3/4” thick, and season both sides generously with salt and pepper.

Step 3: Grill over medium heat until crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside. This should take about 6-8 minutes, flipping just once during cooking. Internal temperature should be 160°F. (Tip: Toast the buns while you’re at it.) Serve with the usual suspects (ketchup, mustard, relish), or switch things up with some of the condiments and toppings listed below:

Trendy toppings:

  • sautéed mushrooms
  • arugula
  • caramelized onions
  • smoked bacon
  • crumbled blue cheese
  • roasted red peppers
  • sharp cheddar
  • horseradish
  • aioli
  • mango chutney

Trashy toppings:

  • peanut butter
  • coleslaw
  • fried egg
  • grilled salami
  • Kraft singles (a perennial fave), or a spritz of cheese-in-a-can (even classier)
  • grilled pineapple rings

Photo Blog Hamburgers Perfect Burgers Beef

For more tasty burger ideas, see our Best Burger Recipes.

Photo credits:
1-3. Amy Rosen

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