Make Perfect Burger Patties Every Time with These 5 Easy Tips!

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Use these 5 simple and smart strategies to form and grill tender and juicy burger patties all summer long.

woman holding a plate of burger patties by the grill

It’s grilling season and time to up your burger game. 🍔

If you’ll be firing up the grill this 4th of July or anytime soon for a summer gathering, consider checking out these tips for making a better burger.

I am not an expert at grilling everything, but burgers are a staple at my house and I love the process of creating a perfect patty and grilling a juicy cheeseburger with all the yummy toppings.

grilled burger on a spatula on the grill

Here are my top 5 tips on how to make the best burger patty:

1.) For tender burgers, avoid overworking the ground beef.

ground beef on a cutting board to make burgers

Mixing and manipulating the meat can cause burgers to turn out tough after grilling. I am a fan of not adding things like herbs and breadcrumbs to patties and instead just keep it simple. Gently section out your burgers first without touching them too much.

2.) Use two plastic deli lids or Tupperware lids to form perfectly round patties. 

forming burger patties using two deli lids

No need to buy a separate patty press. Simply squish each hamburger patty between two lids. This will form a perfectly even and round burger patty every time! It’s honestly such a great burger hack that works great. Deli-style containers make great containers for food prep and storage. In a pinch, you can use the ones from the grocery store like I did above.

3.) Season meat generously after forming the patties.

seasoning burger patties using Kinders seasoning

The best time to season the burgers is right before grilling. No one loves an underseasoned burger, so consider being a little more heavy-handed with the seasonings. We love this Kinder blend of salt, pepper, and garlic as a suggestion.

4.) Use a meat thermometer to grill burgers to the perfect temperature.

using a meat thermometer to grill burgers

Using a meat thermometer is the best way to ensure your burger is cooked without having to cut into it. Insert it into the thickest part of the burger to get an accurate reading of the internal temperature. We personally prefer a medium burger that’s tender in the middle. It’s important to note the USDA states “To destroy harmful bacteria, cook ground beef to a safe minimum internal temperature of 160°F.”

Here’s a brief guide to burger cooking temperatures: 

  • Medium-Rare: 130-135 F.
  • Medium: 140-145 F.
  • Medium-Well: 150-155 F.
  • Well-Done: 160-165 F.

5.) Opt for high-quality ground meat that is at least 20% fat.

making a juicy grilled burger with toppings

If you’re wondering what type of ground beef to pick up for burgers try at least a lean-to-fat ratio of 80/20. Ground beef with 15–20% fat is best for juicy burgers. Leaner meat can make them dry and flavorless.

Let us know if you have any better burger tips to share in the comments! Happy grilling.

Make this ranch BLT pasta salad alongside your burgers for an excellent side dish.

About the writer:

Lina has a Bachelor's Degree from Northern Arizona University with 11 years of blogging and photography experience having work featured in, Martha Stewart, Country Living, Fox News, Buzzfeed, and HGTV.

Join The Discussion

Comments 4

  1. MaryAnn

    Love your idea of using lids to shape the burgers!

    • Lina

      Yes!! This is the best little hack. Hope you try it soon 🍔 Thanks MaryAnn!

  2. Pat

    That is how I used to make mine. But since I discovered smashburgers, I haven’t made regular burgers. They are so much juicier and more flavorful.

    • Jessica (Hip Sidekick)

      Thanks for sharing how you enjoy burgers, Pat. I like those too! 🤗

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