How to Grill Burgers
Delicious, juicy hamburgers are easy to make. Just follow these simple grilling tips for perfect burgers every time. Let’s get started!
What You’ll Need
Before starting, make sure you have everything on this list. We recommend Kingsford® Original Charcoal Briquets. And don’t skip the digital meat thermometer — it’s the best way to make sure your burgers are done.
- Kingsford® Original Charcoal Briquets
- Digital Meat Thermometer
- Long-Handled Metal Spatula
- 80% Lean Ground Beef
- Salt and Pepper to Taste
- Your Favorite Toppings or Fixings
How to Prep
- Season your ground meat with salt and pepper.
- Form your ground meat into 6-ounce balls, between the size of a baseball and softball. With your hands, flatten them until they’re about ¾” thick.
- Put a slight indentation in the center of each patty to keep it from swelling and becoming too round.
- Refrigerate the patties until you’re ready to put them on the grill.
How to Keep Those Burgers Juicy For delicious, juicy burgers, use a gentle touch when forming your patties. Overmixing or compacting the ground meat can result in dense, firm burgers.
How to Prep
How to Build Your Fire
- Give your top grill grate a good brushing and set it aside. Pour Kingsford® Original Charcoal Briquets into a chimney — or pour them in a mound and light. Wait for coals to light fully.
- Once the charcoal turns gray with ash, arrange coals in a Two-Zone Method: coals on one side of the grill and a void on the other.
- Add the grate and let it heat up.
- Coals should be at Medium Heat — around 400°F. How to control the heat when grilling with charcoal.
How to Gauge Grill Heat Without a Thermometer
Carefully hold your hand about 5” to 6” above the grate, and refer to the temperature settings below:
• High Heat (450° to 550°F):
2 to 4 seconds
• Medium Heat (350° to 450°F):
5 to 6 seconds
• Low Heat (250° to 350°F):
8 to 10 seconds
Make sure your clothing doesn’t touch the grate, and always move your hand away from the heat before you feel discomfort.
When you’re at temp, put cooking oil on a folded paper towel. Grab the oiled paper towel with long-handled tongs and oil the grate thoroughly.
How to Build Your Fire
Grilling Time & Temp
- Sear for 4 to 5 minutes directly over the coals until the burgers are brown and crispy on the bottom.
- Handle the patties gently without pushing down on them with the spatula. Also watch that they don’t char.
- Flare-ups will happen. Don’t worry!
Here’s How to Handle a Flare-Up Flare-ups happen to even the most skilled grill masters. Flare-ups are just fat rendering and dripping onto the coals. With a long-handled, metal spatula, simply move your food to the other side of the grate until the flames subside.
- When you see liquid pooling on the uncooked surface of the burgers, it’s time to flip them.
- Using a long-handled, metal spatula, flip the burgers only once. Then sear the other side to lock in the juices.
- Reposition the burgers so they’re no longer directly over the coals. Cover the grill with the lid, and continue cooking until the desired temp is reached. Use a digital meat thermometer to make sure they’ve hit 160°F.
How Done Are My Burgers? Let’s Find Out * USDA Safety Guidelines recommend cooking ground meat to the well-done temp of 160°F to make sure any harmful bacteria are destroyed.
** Cooking times are approximate. Based on a ¾” burger.