Any good bistro has good bistro burgers. And there are as many variations as there are bistros. My first favorite bistro burger was loaded with lettuce, fried egg, bacon, and a whole bunch of other things. Version 2.0 of the bistro burger takes a little simpler approach, combining delicious grilled mushrooms and onion with a fantastic sauce. The sauce absolutely pairs beautifully with the burger, and is so good that I doubled the recipe. I’m a casual fan of horseradish, which means it can easily become too strong for me if there is too much of it in a dish. The amount of horseradish in the sauce on these bistro burgers was just right for me. The same sauce now finds its way onto wraps and sandwiches in our household. It’s just that good.
I could’ve just left off the lettuce because these Asian pork burgers require absolutely nothing else to make them even more fantastic. Every bite is packed with tender, juicy pork. Teriyaki and soy sauces and ginger bring that Asian-inspired taste. Add a few vegetables and you have what might just be the perfect pork burger. I substituted a hot pepper instead of adding bell pepper. I wanted a little heat in my burgers. Nothing too overpowering. You can also just add a few pinches of red pepper flake if you want a little kick. But don’t leave out the vegetables. They add not only flavor but moisture, which pork needs.
After making a copycat of the Arch Deluxe burger from McDonald’s, I could not stop jonesin’ for a good version of my all-time favorite fast-food burger, the Quarter Pounder with cheese. Simple but tasty. Sure, I might have cheated a bit and actually made a Third Pounder cheese burger, but hey, that just means I had more yumminess! It wasn’t until after my teen years that I also became a fan of the Big Mac, which I’ve made at home several times. And now that I think about them, I’m going to have to make them again, and soon. Want an even bigger Big Mac? Try my Big Mac hoagies. Yep, that’s right, all the great flavors of a Big Mac on a big ole hoagie bun. Not into big Big Macs? My Big Mac sliders are perfect for a party.
Ok, I admit it. I sometimes buy cheap steaks on sale. They make for a quick lunch. Since I work from home I can just toss them on the grill and in no time I’m chowing down. But let’s face it. Cheap steaks aren’t the same as not-cheap-steaks so I often add a bit of something to kick them up a bit. This jalapeno onion steak topping was so good I ended up making another batch to top some hamburgers later in the week. Sweet lightly-caramelized onions in a creamy sauce with just a little beat of jalapeno heat. Next time I cook up some hot dogs I’m going to make another batch of this jalapeno onion steak and burger (and hot dog!) topping. It’ll really crank up any grilled hot dog or smoked sausage. There’s not a tremendous amount of heat (the jalapenos mellow while they cook), so don’t be afraid that the topping is too hot. It’s quite mellow and packed with great flavor.
These Buffalo wing burgers are further proof that chicken or turkey burgers do not have to be boring or bland. These are definitely our go-to no-beef burgers. A little spiciness, tender patties, and oh, my favorite, Buffalo wing flavor. Topped with a dressing that is both sweet and spicy. Perfect! I’ve already made these Buffalo wing burgers several times. We absolutely love them. So far, I have only made them with ground turkey, since we prefer the texture of ground turkey over chicken. Well, that and ground turkey has been on sale lately!
The tastiest burgers are cooked on a flat-top griddle or in a hot skillet. Unlike a grill, the fat doesn’t drip down into the fire below. Instead, it stays on the burger, keeping it moist. And the added plus of a griddle is that you get that wonderful char. These Oklahoma fried onion burgers would be your standard fantastic griddle burgers, but they have a very tasty twist: onions that are griddled into the patties. The result is divine. I use a griddle insert that fits into my Weber charcoal and gas grills to griddle burgers like Oklahoma fried onion burgers. It not only gets super hot, it gets hot consistently across the entire griddle. This ensures that I get nice evenly cooked burgers no matter how many I am cooking at once.
Toss with 1 teaspoon of salt and let rest for 30 minutes to extract as much liquid out of the onions as possible.
Transfer the onions to a towel or a few sheets of paper towels, roll up tightly and squeeze to remove as much liquid as you can.
Divide the onion slices into 4 equal piles on a cutting board or flat surface.
Divide the beef into 4 patties and form into balls.
Place beef on top of the onions and, using the palm of your hand or the bottom of a small skillet, flatten the beef into patties. The onions will stick to the bottom of the patties. That's what you want.
Season patties with salt and pepper.
Heat up a griddle or cast iron skillet on your stove top or grill over medium-high heat.
Add the butter and swirl it around to coat the griddle or skillet.
Add the patties, onion side down, and cook for 6-8 minutes. You'll see the onions starting to turn golden brown and get crispy around the sides.
Flip and continue cooking until the burgers are done, about 2 more minutes.
Top with cheese and remove.
Toast the buns, if desired.
Add the patties, mayonnaise, mustard, and pickles.
Probably no one besides me remembers McDonald’s Arch Deluxe burgers. They were a more grown up burger, launched in the 1990s. They were a flop, but honestly, I’m not sure why. I love making copycat versions of the burger at home. They are your pretty-much-standard burgers, but with a sauce that is totally different than the special sauce you find on a Big Mac. The star of the show is definitely the sauce and the special seasoning that McDonald’s uses on all of their burgers, from the Arch Deluxe of old to the classic Quarter Pounder. I always thought that the Arch Deluxe should’ve been a hit (along with the McDLT). Well, I guess I can’t call them all correctly!
My rule for sandwiches also applies to burgers: The messier, the better. One glance at these unbelievably messy Dallas burgers and you know they are going to be crazy good. You know that all sorts of wonderful things are going to run down your forearm when you pick them up. You know you’ll be scraping yummy goodness off your plate with your fingers (ok, use potato chips for scraping if you wish).
Wondering why I put the cheese on the bun bottom instead of on top of the meat (and believe me, there’s some in there)? To keep the bun from getting so soggy you end up an open-faced burger, eating with a knife and fork. No, the cheese won’t get all melty gooey down there, but the trade-off is worth it to me. I used your pretty-much-standard deli slaw on these Dallas burgers, but a broccoli slaw or even a jalapeno slaw would be just as great. Or try my roasted poblano slaw.