If you’re planning on unveiling a super-impressive new burger to your dinner audience, we’ve got you covered. It is Burger Week, after all! While there’s nothing like a classic All-American cheeseburger, everyone knows you can already churn those out like a true grillmaster. But have you ever made a rarebit burger? How about a queso fundido burger? Expand your burger universe with these 10 all-beef burgers we think are instant classics, and start heating that cast-iron pan to smoking hot now.
Recipe: Byron’s Rarebit Burger
Fred was once charged with making a hamburger that celebrated British ingredients for an event called Meatopia. And what could be more British than “Welsh rarebit” flavored with English ale? Think of this as an eccentric English cheeseburger.
The year we opened, Zagat called this one of the best new burgers in New York. It’s an unctuous play on the steakhouse classic and the traditional flavors of French cuisine that I admire as a chef. The green peppercorn sauce is made with a touch of cream and brandy to highlight the beef; you’ll have about ½ cup left over, so save the sauce to try with your next steak dinner, too. The Steak au Poivre Burger is great with fries, just like its original bistro inspiration.
I’m not above a simple cheeseburger topped with crispy onion rings and barbecue sauce every now and then. Sure, it’s not white linen tablecloth fancy, but sometimes you just need to roll up your sleeves and get a little dirty…with barbecue sauce. Let’s take off our top hats and tiaras, loosen our ties, and unbutton our top buttons because these sliders are taking us back to the basics. If you don’t want to go through the steps of making the onion rings from scratch, use store-bought frozen onion rings instead. Just cook in the oven according to the package directions.
I couldn’t imagine not weaving in some classic Mexican touches, crowd-pleasing flavors I knew could win a competition. Flavors like the traditional Mexican queso fundido, melted cheese with chorizo sausage and roasted peppers. So, for those very special moments, I offer my mash-up of the rich and delicious, gooey-melty queso fundido and a classic American burger. Cultural exchange never tasted better, unless, of course, it includes a big spoonful of roasted tomatillo salsa.
Recipe: The Husk Cheeseburger
What I remember most about the cheeseburger was the squishy bun and how wonderful it was to eat the double patty covered in gooey American cheese. This recipe is a tip of the hat to that burger. I’ve changed it a little to make it my own — I wouldn’t dare try and replicate the burger from Robo’s. This recipe feeds a crowd, but you can halve it for a smaller group.
Recipe: Biscuit Love’s Wash Park Burger
“The Wash Park started with wanting something ‘lunch-y’ on the menu, and wanting to use Bear Creek, who is our provider for beef and pork,” says Karl Worley. “They came up with a custom blend beef for us. We gussied it up a bit with bacon jam and pimento cheese and named it the Wash Park after Washington Park in Denver, Colorado, the park where Sarah and I got engaged.”
Recipe: A Great Aussie Burger
“If you ever wanted a taste of Australia, the Great Aussie Lamb Burger is 100 percent Aussie in every bite,” says Meat & Livestock Australia’s Catherine Goulding. “In Australia this is what we call a ‘burger with the lot’ — bacon, egg, beets and pineapple. Tip: You can assemble your burger any way you please, but for the most stable stacked burger, keep the salad at the bottom, the meat in the middle and the egg on top.”
Recipe: The “Doojie” Burger
Chicago chef Chris Gawronski is no stranger to ‘nduja, that delicious fermented spreadable sausage that’s spicing up everything from salad dressings to burgers around the country. Melted, smeared, fried, layered or smudged, there are no two ways about it: This once-obscure ingredient is a hot topic. At his restaurants, Acanto and the Gage, Gawronski serves traditional favorites but adds his own touches to every dish.
Recipe: Hong Thaimee’s Thai Burger
This burger was inspired by a traditional sausage dish from Chiang Mai. Topped with homemade cilantro-lime mayonnaise and pickled green papaya, it’s a fresh Thai take on the American classic. I used to make it for friends when I first moved to Brooklyn, and it has since become one of the most popular menu items at Ngam.
Recipe: The Big Marc Burger
This was the burger we brought to Burger Bash at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival in 2009. My thinking was, “Let’s just make a good burger!” And lo and behold, we won the People’s Choice Award.