How to cook a burger should be easy, right? Burger patty, hot pan, cook. But there are few extra tips – plus how you construct your burger – that people miss out. Here are my top 10 tips on how to cook a perfect burger.
There’s nothing like a perfectly cooked burger. I still dream about a burger I had in LA – it’s still Number 1 on my top 10 burger list, but that’s a story for another time.
Cooking your burgers at home is all about practice, and it’s one thing I genuinely don’t mind doing over and over again! Thanks to my relentless rehearsals, I can now bring you some well-honed tricks that’ll bring your homemade burger to the next level!
My 10 tips for making a burger – perfectly!
1. Always use the best buns – it’s always about the bun. Brioche is my favourite as they’re very soft yet durable. But most importantly make sure the bun and burger fit. There’s nothing worse than a patty bulging out or being swamped by the bread.
2. There’s no such thing as too many pickles.
3. Always add cheese. It’s that simple. It’ll also help the burger patty hold together and acts as a kind of glue when you’re constructing.
4. Protect your buns! This is a tip I got from Gordon Ramsey, whose burgers are also in our top 10 burger list. In other words, don’t let the patty sit directly on the bread. It needs a layer of salad, sauce, pickles or cheese to stop the bread from going soggy.
5. A sprinkle of salt on the burger’s surface before you flip it, then a quick press will cause the juice to caramelise on the pan and create a delicious crust on the patty. This is called the Maillard Reaction. Look it up!
6. Be wary of tomatoes. It’s their juice that usually causes excessive drippage.
7. If you’re going to add bacon to your burger, consider a drizzle of maple syrup!
8. Don’t over-cook your bacon. I prefer crispy bacon for breakfast, but in a burger it gives a hard incongruous (love that word) texture.
9. Definitely consider adding jalapeños.
10. Make sure the cheese on the burger is perfectly melty by putting the lid on the pan.
Extra tip – I don’t use extra oil in my pan. There’s enough in the patty. In fact I’ve found the burger spits too much if you use extra oil.
If you’re looking for some great guidance on how to cook you burger and for recipe inspiration, my friend bought me this amazing book on burgers – Hamburger Gourmet – that has improved my cooking technique no end.
We’ve also shared our own recipe for our burger patties right here!
What’s your top tip for making burgers? Do you have a top tip or favourite cooking method? Tell us in the comments!