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My Reverse Sear Burger Technique

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  • PJBowmaster
    Club Member
    • Dec 2016
    • 549
    • Black Hills of SD

    My Reverse Sear Burger Technique

    Cooking burgers using the reverse sear method is not new around here. A lot of folks do some variation of the technique and produce GREAT Burgers! Lately, I've been posting photos of my Burger cooks in the "Show us what you are cooking" thread. And I've been getting a lot of nice feedback. So I wanted to share my method with my friends in The Pit. It's not the only way to do it. But I think it's a good way to do it. And it's very easy!! So if you are struggling to make a great burger, I invite you to give it a try.

    The method works with virtually any type of grill that can be set up in a two zone configuration. I cook burgers on my Weber Gas grills all the time. But I REALLY like this technique on my Weber Kettle w/SNS. I start with Certified Angus ground Chuck. I don't mess around with grinding my own. My Butcher does a fine job. I just hand form 8 oz patties. I don't press them out too much because I want them to be about 3/4 to 1 inch thick. And I want those air pockets that Meathead talks about. With a little practice I can now form patties that will perfectly fit a standard Kaiser Bun. I apply salt and usually lemon pepper. Use what you like. Then stick them back in the fridge.

    On a Weber Kettle w/Slow N Sear. I use the "Hot and Fast", 325 degree set up recommended by Adrenalin Barbecue for a shorter, hotter cook. It's the same set-up recommended for cooking chicken. Light half of a chimney of charcoal. (I use Kingsford Original) Let them burn for about 10 minutes or until "well lit". Add only these coals to the Slow N Sear charcoal basket spread evenly. Do not use any unlit coals. Open the top and bottom vents fully open. Let the grill warm up, clean the grate, and add some foil to the bottom grate to catch drippings. If you want a little smoke add a chunk. I like a little Hickory smoke on my burgers. I do not use a probe at grate level to monitor this cook.

    Place the patties on the indirect side of the grill. Adjust the vents so that the bottom vent is about 1/4 and the top vent is about 1/3. Let it go for about 15 minutes then turn the patties. If you want bacon burgers place some bacon strips on the indirect side at this time. Let it go for another 15 minutes. After 15 minutes flip the bacon and check the internal temperature of the patties with a good digital thermometer. I'm shooting for 150 degrees f. It's probably going to take another 15 minutes to get there. Remove the bacon if it's done to your liking. Once you hit 150 degrees f move the burgers directly over the coals in the SNS. I turn them every minute until I have a nice crispy sear and my internal temp is at 160 degrees f. I then move them to the indirect side, add cheese, and close the lid. Once the cheese is melted to my liking it's time to toast the buns. I do this over direct heat. It only takes about 20 seconds or so.

    A word about toppings. I like hand grated cheese because it has great texture. And BACON!!! Beyond that use the freshest ingredients you can find. Whatever it is that YOU like. Get creative or keep it simple. But start with good meat cooked properly. I'm NOT going for Medium Rare with this method. My burgers are cooked to 160 degrees f. But they are moist, have a nice beefy flavor, and are SAFE for human consumption. Everyone loves them. Enjoy!!

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  • Henrik
    Founding Member - Moderator Emeritus
    • Jul 2014
    • 4145
    • Stockholm, Sweden

    Mmm mmm! Love that burger! Thanks for sharing, I cook mine to 160 too. Don't want it too raw in the middle.


    • tbob4
      Charter Member
      • Nov 2014
      • 2258
      • Chico, CA
      • BBQ's
        California Custom Smokers Intensive Cooking Unit
        California Custom Smokers Meat Locker
        Santa Maria Grill
        Vision Grill

        Sierra Nevada IPA


      I guess I know what I am having for dinner tonight. Thanks!


      • CaptainMike
        CaptainMike commented
        Editing a comment
        Like househomey's meatballs!
    • CaptainMike
      Club Member
      • Nov 2015
      • 2360
      • The Great State of Jefferson
      • Weber Summit Charcoal Grill w/SnS and DnG (Spartacus)
        Old school big'ol Traeger w/Pro controller (Big Tex)
        2 W22's w/SnS, DnG (1 black, 1 copper) (Minions 1 and 2)
        20+ y/o many times rebuilt Weber Genesis w/GrillGrates (Gas Passer)
        20 x 30 Santa Maria grill (Maria, duh)
        Bradley cabinet smoker (Pepper Gomez)
        36" Blackstone griddle (The Black Beauty)
        Thermoworks Smoke and Thermapen.

      Nice, that's pretty much how I do 'em. Except for last night we did our first sous vide burgers stuffed with smoked gouda and gruyere. Very tasty indeed.


      • PJBowmaster
        PJBowmaster commented
        Editing a comment
        I have not experimented with sous vide. But a burger stuffed with Gouda and Gruyere? I'll bet that was tasty!!
    • Steve B
      Club Member
      • Jun 2016
      • 2893
      • Rockland county New York
      • Lonestar Grillz 24x36 offset smoker, grill, w/ main chamber charcoal grate and 3 tel-tru thermometers - left, right and center
        Yoke Up custom charcoal basket and a Grill Wraps cover.

        22.5 copper kettle w/ SnS, DnG, BBQ vortex, gasket and stainless steel hinge kit.

        Napoleon gas grill (soon to go bye bye) rotting out.

        1 maverick et-733 digital thermometer - black
        1 maverick et-733 - gray
        1 new standard grilling remote digital thermometer
        1 thermoworks thermopen mk4 - red
        1 thermoworks thermopop - red

        Pre Miala flavor injector
        taylor digital scale
        TSM meat grinder
        chefs choice food slicer
        cuisinhart food processor
        food saver vacuum sealer
        TSM harvest food dehydrator

      Nice post PJ. Well detailed and informative. I will definitely give it a try. Thanks.


      • PJBowmaster
        PJBowmaster commented
        Editing a comment
        Thank you Steve!
    • HawkerXP
      Club Member
      • Jul 2016
      • 5128
      • Northern Virginia
      • 3 Weber kettles, and a PBC
        Dot w two probes
        Slo n Sear
        Cold beer

      Thanks for sharing! They look marvelous!!


      • RonB
        Club Member
        • Apr 2016
        • 12322
        • Near Richmond VA
        • Weber Performer Deluxe
          Pizza insert
          Smokenator 1000
          Cookshack Smokette Elite
          2 Thermapens
          lots of probes.

        Thanx for sharing.




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