The best burger takes equal amounts of the right meat cuts, time, practice, and patience. Lucky for you, we’ve done most of the hard work! Check out our favorite burger blend recipe, inspired by burger greats like Pat LaFrieda.
According to Andrew Zimmern, LaFrieda’s Original Blend burger is comprised of chuck, clod (also known as beef shoulder, an economical cut of meat), brisket and short rib, ground fresh, and in even proportions. The best burgers are 100% Black Angus, and both Zimmern and LaFrieda will agree that sourcing your meat from a reliable butcher will produce better results than buying from a supermarket or big box grocer.
According to most chefs and grilling experts, to make the perfect burger, a kitchen scale is absolutely necessary to ensure correct measurements. As an example, for a six ounce patty, Andrew Zimmern recommends measuring the meat, then forming your patties, keeping them all even in size for easier cooking. Try to keep your burger form as loose as possible, gently combining to avoid over mixing the burger blend. Zimmern also recommends incorporating the pepper after cooking, if you feel your burger is too ‘bitter’. We’re personally happy with it blended into the mix, but try making your burgers ahead of time, and see which one suits your palate the best.
The Perfect Burger Blend
by the Crave Local Test Kitchen
- 1.5 lbs ground meat (equal parts mock tenderloin, chuck and brisket)
- 2 tbs olive oil (to brush grill)
- 2 tsp truffle salt
- 2 tsp black pepper, ground fresh
- 1.5 tsp garlic powder
- Brioche or sourdough hamburger buns
- Butter for buns
Preheat the grill to medium-low. Blend the meat, salt, pepper, and garlic together with your hands, and form into 6 equal patties. Over mixing will result in a tough, chewy burger, so handle gently and carefully.
Brush the grill with a little olive oil, and carefully slide the burgers onto the hot grill. A grilling plancha (or griddle) is also acceptable for cooking. Cook for approximately 4 minutes. Flip your perfect burgers, and let cook for 1 minute. If you plan to add cheese, this is the time. Two minutes of grilling will give you perfectly melted cheese.
While the burgers are cooking, lightly brush the buns with butter, and place on the top rack of the grill, away from the flame. Serve with a glass of red wine, or your favorite pilsner.
Check out our favorite barbecue and wine pairings, as well as Celebrity Chef Ted Reader’s Stone Grilled Butter Burger recipe, a loaded Cuban sandwich gone over-the-top burger, and vegan and vegetarian friendly non-beef summer recipes for your next block party.