Each year, Americans consume upwards of 13 billion hamburgers. Those burgers are bought in drive-thrus, restaurants, and from the local grocery store. If you’re using store-bought patties, then they typically go right from the freezer to the grill. Although tasty, nothing beats making your own burger. And it is not just ground beef and seasoning. In fact, there are some awesome ways to create your own special burgers. Here are the recipes to follow:

Barbecue Bacon Burger

Right out of the gate, burgers are great. Imagine what will happen when you add two more delicious items: Bacon and Barbecue Sauce. This is how to pull it together:

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds freshly ground beef chuck
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 slices thick-cut slab bacon, split in half crosswise (see note)
  • 1 onion, cut into 1/4-inch-thick rings
  • 1/2 cup barbecue sauce (your choice)
  • 4 slices cheddar or American cheese
  • 4 sturdy burger buns

Directions

  1. Divide meat into four even piles and shape into burger patties about 1/2-inch wider than burger buns. Season generously with salt and pepper and set aside.
  2. Preheat your grill so that one side is high heat and the other medium to low.
  3. Place bacon and onions in between hot and cool sides of grill and cook, turning occasionally, until surface of bacon is bubbling but not yet crisp and browned, and onions are lightly softened, about 15 minutes total.
  4. Place burgers directly over hot side of grill and cook until well charred, about 2 minutes. Flip patties and brush with sauce. Cook on second side until well charred, about 2 minutes longer, brushing with sauce occasionally. Flip burgers again, transfer to cooler side of grill, brush with more syrup, and continue to cook, brushing with sauce occasionally, until patty registers 125°F to 130°F on an instant read thermometer for medium rare, about 5 minutes total, or 135°F to 140°F for medium, about 6 minutes total. Top each burger patty with 1 slice cheese, then transfer to a large plate and tent with aluminum foil.
  5. Brush bacon with barbecue sauce and place directly over hot side of grill, sauce-side down. Brush top with barbecue sauce. Cook until well charred, about 1 minute. Flip and cook until second side is well charred, about 1 minute longer. Top each burger patty with three pieces bacon, then top each with a couple of slices of onion.
  6. Toast buns directly over hot side of grill until browned, about 30 seconds.
  7. Place bottom buns on a cutting board. Transfer patty/bacon/onions to bottom bun. Brush top bun with barbecue sauce and close sandwich. Ready to eat!

Quadruple Chile Cheeseburger

If you like your burgers with a bit more “kick,” then this is the patty to try.

Ingredients

  • 2 whole fresh poblano or hatch chiles
  • 2 pounds freshly ground beef chuck
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 chipotle pepper canned in adobo, finely chopped, plus 2 teaspoons adobo sauce
  • 4 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 8 slices pepper jack or pepper Colby-jack cheese
  • 4 large hamburger buns
  • 1/4 cup sliced pickled jalapeños

Directions

  1. Divide meat into four even piles and shape into burger patties about 1/2-inch wider than burger buns. Season generously with salt and pepper and set aside.  
  2. Place chiles directly over a gas burner and cook, turning occasionally, until charred and blistered all over. Alternatively, place chiles as close as possible to broiler element set to high and cook, turning occasionally, until charred and blistered all over. Transfer to a sheet of aluminum foil and wrap tightly. Set aside for five minutes, then remove from foil and carefully peel off most of skin. Discard stems and seeds. Roughly chop chiles.
  3. Combine chipotle, adobo sauce, and mayonnaise in a small bowl. Stir to combine. Set aside.
  4.  Place burgers directly over hot side of grill and cook, turning occasionally, until well charred and internal temperature registers 125°F to 130°F on an instant read thermometer for medium-rare, about 5 minutes total, or 135°F to 140°F for medium, about 6 minutes total. Top each burger patty with two slices of cheese, then transfer to a large plate and tent with aluminum foil.
  5. Toast buns directly over hot side of grill until browned, about 30 seconds.
  6. Place bottom buns on a cutting board. Top with burger patties. Top burger patties with roasted chiles and pickled jalapeños. Top with chipotle mayonnaise. Close sandwiches and serve.

Teriyaki Burgers

Once you’ve mastered the recipe for the classic burger patty, you can infuse it with all kinds of flavors to take it to a whole other level. This delicious teriyaki burger is a prime example:

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh ground beef chuck (about 80% lean)
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons shichimi togarashi (see note)
  • 1 cup thinly sliced scallions
  • 1 recipe Teriyaki Sauce
  • 4 soft hamburger buns
  • 4 tablespoons mayonnaise, preferably Japanese-style
  • 2 cups finely shredded green cabbage

Directions

  1. Form beef into 4 patties, about 1/2 inch wider than the burger buns, with a slight depression in the center to account for bulging as they cook. Season generously with salt and togarashi and refrigerate until ready to cook. Sprinkle scallions evenly over a large plate or a cutting board.
  2. Place burgers directly over hot grill and cook, turning occasionally, until burgers are well charred and burgers’ centers register 110°F on an instant-read thermometer for medium rare or 120°F for medium, 5 to 7 minutes total.
  3. Brush burgers on both sides with teriyaki sauce and continue cooking, flipping and brushing occasionally, until they register 120°F for medium rare or 130°F for medium. Remove from grill and transfer to scallion-covered plate or cutting board. Brush with more sauce and flip burgers, brushing with sauce until well glazed and coated in scallions.
  4. Toast burger buns over grill until well browned and crisp. Spread bottom and top buns with mayonnaise. Divide half of cabbage over bottom buns. Top with cooked burgers. Brush with more teriyaki sauce. Top with remaining cabbage, close buns, and serve.

After trying these recipes, you may never go back to a regular hamburger again!