These four secrets will teach you how to make a juicy burger every single time and are backed completely by science! Plus, my exact homemade burger recipe for you to print and use.
Making a delicious, juicy burger is so easy and all you need are a few insider ninja skills. You don’t need any special tools and there are no special ingredients you wouldn’t find at your local grocery store.
How to Make a Juicy Burger
1. Use 80/20 Ground Beef for the Best Burgers
Ground beef comes in all percentages of beef to fat ratio. An 80/20 mix means there is 80% beef and 20% fat in one pound of meat. While a leaner ground beef ratio may be a bit healthier in other applications, if a juicy burger is really important to you, that 20% fat is necessary. On the opposite side of the coin, if you go with a ratio that is higher in fat, like the inexpensive 73/27 mix, you will end up with a greasy burger with not enough meatiness.
2. The Best Burgers Require Kosher Salt
We all have iodized salt in our cabinets because it is the cheapest at the store, but that doesn’t mean it is the best salt for cooking. Not only does the addition of iodine alter the flavors of whatever you add it to, but its tiny crystal size makes it dissolve too quickly, leading to over-salting. If you remember only one point from this post, let it be this: everything you cook and bake will taste better if you use kosher salt instead of iodized salt!
You will also need enough kosher salt for each burger so don’t be shy. The best ratio is 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon for every 6 ounce patty. You should be able to see the kosher salt on the outside of your patties!
3. Do Not Salt Your Burgers Until Right Before You Grill Them
If you salt your burgers as you form them, the kosher salt will immediately begin to draw out the water and break down the proteins in the meat. That is a great thing if you are making a chewy sausage, but if you want tender, juicy hamburgers, then wait to generously salt them until right before tossing them on a hot grill. Trust me that is makes a massive difference!
4. Don’t Overwork the Ground Beef
While you do have to work the ground beef to form them into patties, try to work it as little as possible. You should still be able to see most of the individual strands of the ground beef after it is formed. This will be really easy since you aren’t working any seasoning, binders, or extras into the meat like you would a meatloaf. Simply weigh out a 1/3 pound of ground beef, roll it gently into a ball, then form it gently into a patty about 25% bigger than your bun since it will shrink as it grills. It also helps to create a two inch dent in the center of the patty to keep the burger from swelling in the center as it cooks.
How to Make a Juicy Burger Video
My Favorite Side to Serve with Burgers
My Broccoli Cauliflower Salad is the best summer side dish you will make! Loaded with fresh broccoli, cauliflower and bacon, plus a simple homemade salad dressing drizzled over the top. It is super quick and easy, plus makes a great side for a BBQ or cookout.
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These burgers turn out perfectly juicy and tender every single time!
2 pounds 80/20 ground beef
3 – 3 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- Preheat grill to high.
- Divide ground beef into six – 1/3 pound servings. Gently roll into balls. Gently press into patties that are about 25% larger than your buns. Make a 2 inch wide dimple in the center of each patty.
- Do not salt the patties until right before you put them on the grill.
- Salt generously on both sides of the patties, and place on the hot grill. Close the lid and cook for 4-5 minutes. Flip and cook for 2-5 minutes longer depending on how you like your burgers. 2 minutes will have a pink interior and 5 will be well done.
You can make these patties ahead of time, cover them well, and store them in the fridge for up to 2 days before grilling. Remember, don’t salt them until right before grilling.
- Serving Size: 1 burger
- Calories: 388
- Sugar: 0 g
- Sodium: 1069 mg
- Fat: 30 g
- Saturated Fat: 12 g
- Unsaturated Fat: 0 g
- Trans Fat: 0 g
- Carbohydrates: 0 g
- Fiber: 0 g
- Protein: 25 g
- Cholesterol: 107 mg
Keywords: easy grilled dinner, grilling recipe