How to Make Your Burger More Awesome

Step up your BBQ game with these expert-approved ingredients.

By Leah Mennies | Boston Magazine |

Burger Grilling Tips from the Pros

GO FOR A LOOSE GRIND
When ordering your beef, ask for lots of space (read: air pockets) between the grains of meat. “Then when the fat melts, it hangs out in there and stays nice and juicy,” Morrison says. Grinding your own? Use a 3/8-inch blade.

LEAVE IT ALONE, ALREADY!
“A lot of people toss the raw meat back and forth until a non-crumbly, gluelike ball is formed. This is bad,” Monsour says. “Minimal manipulation may [make it] seem like the burger will fall apart, but it won’t.”

LET THE PATTY COME TO ROOM TEMPERATURE BEFORE COOKING
“It will yield a more evenly cooked burger, and you will avoid the flare-ups that come with grilling while you wait for the center of the burger to be cooked,” Maws says.

TRY AN INDOOR METHOD
Morrison prefers a Lodge-brand cast-iron skillet. “All of those juices and fat remain in the pan, which keeps the burger nice and moist,” he says.

KEEP YOUR COOKTOP HOT
“This is the only way to get a great sear on your burger,” Gamez says. “The process ensures you get a nice charred outside and juicy middle.”

STEP AWAY FROM THE SPATULA
“I’m always telling young cooks to leave it alone on the grill,” Scelfo says, “and if I catch you pressing it or capping it, it won’t be pretty.”

DON’T SERVE IT RIGHT AWAY
“Remember to give your burger five minutes to rest after you have cooked it before garnishing with your toppings or even putting it on a bun,” Gamez says. This allows the juices to stay where they belong — inside the patty.