What do you do when the weather is lousy but you’re craving a juicy burger? Or when you live in an apartment with no access to a grill, but you want to sink your teeth into a delicious patty? Fear not, because making burgers on the stove is an easy and satisfying alternative. In this article, we’ll walk you through five easy steps to making delicious burgers on the stove, provide a fool-proof recipe, offer tips and tricks for mastering the art of stovetop burger cooking, and explore creative ways to spice up your burgers.
5 Easy Steps to Making Delicious Burgers on the Stovetop
Before we get into specifics, let’s go over the basic steps you need to take to make burgers on the stove. Here’s an overview of the process:
Step 1: Prepping your ingredients
Start by getting your ingredients ready: ground beef, salt, pepper, and anything else you’d like to add to your burgers (more on that later). Let the meat come to room temperature, which will help it cook evenly.
Step 2: Shaping the patties
Divide the meat into equal portions, and shape them into patties that are about 1/2-inch thick. Make a small indent in the center of each patty with your thumb; this will help the burger cook evenly and prevent it from puffing up too much.
Step 3: Cooking the burgers on the stovetop
Heat up a non-stick pan or cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Once it’s hot, add the burgers to the pan and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side, flipping once, until they’re browned and cooked to your preferred level of doneness. Don’t press down on the burgers with a spatula, as this will squeeze out the juices and make them dry.
Step 4: Adding toppings
Now comes the fun part: adding toppings! Cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles, ketchup, mustard, mayo… the possibilities are endless. Get creative and experiment with different combinations of flavors and textures.
Step 5: Serving and enjoying your burgers
Place your burger on a bun and serve it up with your favorite side dish. Grab a napkin and enjoy!
The Perfect Stovetop Burgers: A Fool-Proof Recipe
If you’re looking for a tried-and-true recipe for making burgers on the stove, we’ve got you covered. This recipe yields four juicy burgers that are sure to satisfy your cravings.
- 1 lb. ground beef (80% lean, 20% fat)
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 4 slices of cheese (optional)
- 4 hamburger buns
- Toppings of your choice
- In a large bowl, gently mix together the ground beef, salt, and black pepper. Don’t overwork the meat, or it will become tough.
- Divide the mixture into four equal portions, and shape them into patties that are about 1/2-inch thick. Make a small indent in the center of each patty with your thumb.
- Heat up a non-stick pan or cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Once it’s hot, add the burgers to the pan and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side, flipping once, until they’re browned and cooked to your preferred level of doneness.
- If you’re adding cheese, place a slice on each burger during the last minute of cooking, and cover the pan with a lid to help the cheese melt.
- Toast the hamburger buns in the same pan or on a separate griddle.
- Assemble your burger with your favorite toppings and enjoy!
Feel free to add your own twist to this recipe. You could mix in diced onions or garlic, top the burgers with sautéed mushrooms, or use a different type of cheese. The possibilities are endless!
Sizzling Stovetop Burgers: Tips and Tricks for Mastering the Art
Cooking burgers on the stove may seem straightforward, but there are a few tips and tricks that can take your burgers from good to great. Here are some things to keep in mind:
Use the right type of meat
When choosing ground beef for your burgers, look for meat that has a moderately high fat content, such as 80% lean and 20% fat. This will give your burgers a juicy, flavorful texture. Leaner cuts of meat (such as 90% lean and 10% fat) can result in dry, tough burgers.
Season the patties well
Don’t skimp on the seasoning! Use a generous amount of salt and freshly ground black pepper to flavor the meat. You can also add other seasonings, such as garlic powder, cumin, or smoked paprika, to customize the flavor to your liking.
Cook to the right temperature
The USDA recommends cooking ground beef to an internal temperature of 160°F to ensure that any harmful bacteria are destroyed. Use an instant-read thermometer to check the temperature of the center of the patty. For a medium-rare burger, cook to 135°F; for medium, cook to 145°F; for medium-well, cook to 150°F; and for well-done, cook to 160°F.
Let the meat rest
Once you’ve cooked your burgers, remove them from the heat and let them rest for a few minutes before adding toppings. This allows the juices to redistribute throughout the patty, making for a more succulent burger.
Skip the Grill: Stovetop Burger Hacks for Indoor Cooking
If you’re looking for ways to up your stovetop burger game, here are a few creative alternatives to the basic cooking method:
Use a cast iron skillet
A cast iron skillet is a great tool for cooking burgers on the stove. It retains heat well and gives burgers a nice sear on the outside while keeping them juicy on the inside.
Broil the burgers in the oven
If you don’t have a non-stick pan or cast iron skillet, you can broil your burgers in the oven for a crispy outside and juicy inside. Place the burgers on a baking sheet and broil for about 4-5 minutes on each side, or until cooked to your liking.
Try a smashed burger
For a fun and unique twist on the classic burger, try making smashed burgers. To do this, heat up a cast iron skillet over high heat. Place a ball of ground beef (about 2 ounces) on the skillet and press it down with a spatula until it’s flat. Season with salt and pepper and let cook for about 1-2 minutes, until the bottom is browned and crispy. Flip the patty and top with cheese if desired. Cook for another minute or so, until the cheese is melted and the burger is cooked through.
Inventive Ways to Spice Up Your Stovetop Burgers
Finally, let’s talk about ways to add some variety and excitement to your stovetop burgers:
Experiment with sauces and toppings
Try topping your burgers with different sauce combinations, such as BBQ sauce and coleslaw, or blue cheese dressing and bacon. You can also experiment with different types of cheese, such as blue cheese, cheddar, or brie.
Make a veggie burger
If you’re looking for a plant-based option, try making a veggie burger. These can be made with beans, lentils, mushrooms, or other vegetables, and can be cooked on the stovetop just like a regular burger.
Try a turkey burger
Turkey burgers are a leaner alternative to beef burgers. To make them, combine ground turkey with breadcrumbs, egg, herbs, and seasonings of your choice. Shape into patties and cook on the stovetop.
Now that you know how to make delicious burgers on the stove, it’s time to get cooking! Whether you stick to the classic recipe or experiment with different seasonings and toppings, there’s no wrong way to make a burger. And with the flexibility and convenience of stovetop cooking, you can enjoy burgers year-round, rain or shine. Don’t be afraid to try new things and make the recipe your own.