Burger Time: Make Your Best Burger

It's always a great time for a burger, but in summer especially so. Burgers are really easy to make, but a few technical refinements can make the difference between a good burger and a great one. Here's a look at our best-ever tips:

  • BurgerUse a top-quality meat. All Kowalski's ground beef options are great choices. Whether you prefer grass-fed, Choice, Prime or Akaushi, the most important factor is choosing meat with at least 15-20% fat content. Burgers aren't meant to be health food, and not only does the fat add flavor, it keeps the burger moist and juicy. (Good burgers are described as juicy, not dry!)
  • Be gentle. Don't overhandle your meat. Work it just enough to shape it and ensure it will hold together.
  • Get in shape. Make your burger slightly thinner in the middle to account for the fact that burgers swell when cooking.
  • Size matters. Make a patty slightly larger than your bun to account for shrink while cooking.
  • Make it sizzle. Whether you use gas or charcoal, grill over direct heat with the grill lid down at high to no cooler than medium-high. Turn only once, when the burger releases easily from the grill grates. Never, ever press down on the meat as it cooks.
  • Don't overdo it. The USDA recommends cooking ground meat to 160˚ for safety, but for many people that is overdone for a burger.
  • Give it a rest. After removing them from the grill, tent your burgers with foil and let them rest 5 min. before serving.

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