May 23, 2019

Jake’s Double Brisket Cheese Burger

Recipe: Steven Raichlen

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 16 to 18 minutes

Try Jake’s Double Brisket Cheese Burger recipe from the cookbook The Brisket Chronicles by Steven Raichlen.

The double brisket bratwurst created by sausage master Jake Klein is one of the world wonders of wurst — succulent, spicy and smoky, with just the right snap to the casing. Nepotism alert: Jake is my stepson, but if you don’t believe me, here’s how New York Times restaurant critic Pete Wells described it: “a phenomenal piece of barbecue, packing more smoke into a sausage than I’d thought possible.” That’s the good news. The bad news is that the formula is a trade secret, and Jake isn’t talking — even to me. He will provide the next best thing — the recipe for his double brisket burgers — made with a similar filling. In addition to being exceedingly tasty, it’s one of the rare briskets you can direct grill.



  • 1 1/2 pounds ground brisket (cut from the fatty point section — you want about 20 percent fat), well chilled
  • 1/2 pound of your favorite barbecued brisket (see pages 41 to 70), chilled and chopped
  • Vegetable oil, for oiling the grill grate
  • Coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 thin slices sharp provolone cheese (optional)


  • 4 sesame hamburger buns or pretzel rolls, cut in half
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • Lettuce leaves — for example, Boston or butter lettuce
  • Tomato slices
  • Dill or sweet pickle chips
  • Your favorite condiments (ketchup, mustard, relish, and so on), for serving


Yield: Makes 4 burgers

  1. Place the ground brisket and chopped cooked brisket in a large bowl and mix with a wooden spoon. Moisten your hands with cold water and form the mixture into four equal patties, each 3/4 inch thick. Dimple the center slightly with your thumb (burgers rise more in the center as they cook, so this will help them retain a uniform thickness). Line a plate with plastic wrap, set the burgers on it and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
  2. Set up your grill for direct grilling and heat to high. Brush or scrape the grill grate clean and oil it well.
  3. Generously season the burgers on both sides with salt and pepper. Arrange on the grate and grill until the bottoms are sizzling and browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Give each a quarter turn after 1 1/2 minutes so they grill evenly. Flip the burgers and lay the provolone slices (if using) on top. Close the grill lid and continue grilling until the cheese is melted and the burgers are cooked to taste, 3 to 4 minutes more. The USDA recommends an internal temperature of 160°F (medium to medium-well). Cook as your conscience and common sense dictate. Insert the probe of an instant-read thermometer through the side of the burger to check it.
  4. Meanwhile, brush the cut sides of the buns with butter. Toast the buns, cut sides down, on the grill, about 30 seconds.
  5. To assemble the burgers, line the bottom of each toasted bun with a lettuce leaf, if using (this keeps the burger juices from making the bun soggy). Add the burger and any of the remaining embellishments, including your favorite condiments. Add the top bun and dig in.

Excerpted from The Brisket Chronicles by Steven Raichlen (Workman Publishing). Copyright © 2019. Photographs by Matthew Benson. Used with permission from the publisher.