Alton Brown's Pizza Cutter Hack For Better Sliders

Everyone loves a slider. This expertly assembled creation of bun, patty, topping, and condiment makes an ideal party snack or appetizer, capturing all the essence of a full-sized burger without the commitment to eating an entire one.

However, recreating something so delicious on a smaller scale takes a bit of effort. Specifically, crafting the perfectly sized slider patty usually involves starting with a large portion of meat and trimming it down to your desired size. So what's the best way to do that?

Alton Brown, known for his culinary hacks ranging from achieving crunchy potato skin to the optimal way to devein shrimp, has a unique method for making sliders, too. His secret weapon? A pizza cutter. According to Brown, this tool excels at slicing large amounts of ground meat into small rectangles without tearing or fraying the meat, making the process simpler and setting your sliders up for perfect shaping.

How a pizza wheel makes crafting sliders easier

In a snippet from an episode of "Good Eats: Reloaded" posted on YouTube, Alton Brown showed viewers how to make new, improved, and reloaded sliders, which he calls Mini Man Burgers. Because Brown is a strong advocate for square-shaped sliders, he demonstrated how to use a pizza cutter as a convenient hack for easy and efficient cutting.

Once his ground beef was ready to be portioned into small slider patties, Brown used the pizza cutter to slice the flattened meat, dividing the large rectangle into eight smaller ones. Why opt for a pizza cutter over a knife? According to Brown, it's the best tool for the job because it cuts cleanly through the ground beef without tearing or fraying the meat.

Brown notes that this method offers another benefit: It gives your pizza wheel an additional purpose. After all, why have a tool that serves only one function when you can make it more versatile by turning it into a multitasker?

More ways to use a pizza wheel

The best thing about kitchen gadgets is that even if they're specifically made for one purpose, their potential almost never stops there. It's all about creativity and finding new ways to use the tools you already have, maximizing the utility of each item in your kitchen arsenal.

While a pizza wheel is designed for slicing pizza, its capabilities extend far beyond that. It's excellent for chopping delicate herbs, as it can slice through them quickly without tearing or damaging them. The tool is also useful for making homemade pasta, whether you're cutting thin sheets of dough into long ribbons or shaping ravioli. And don't overlook its utility for sandwiches and quesadillas.

In the realm of baking, a pizza wheel can be indispensable. Use it to cut and shape cookie dough, slice cleanly through pastry for a pie lattice, trim fondant for cakes, or effortlessly cut through freshly baked treats like gooey brownies or sticky lemon bars.