Sizzling Stovetop Burgers - Master the Art of Cooking Burgers on Your Stove!

Looking for an easy dinner option that you can whip up anytime of year? Try making some delicious Stovetop Burgers. Believe it or not, they're not as complicated as you may think! All you need to do is form seasoned burger patties and pan-fry them in a skillet for the perfect amount of time and temperature. Whether you prefer simple hamburgers or jazzed up cheeseburgers with all the toppings, learning how to cook burgers on the stove is definitely a skill worth picking up.

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front view of a stovetop burger with lettuce, tomato, and onion on a plate

What's in this Hamburger Recipe?

Cooking burgers on the stove really doesn't require much – just some ground beef and a few other simple ingredients. You can make it as basic or as fancy as you want, depending on your preference. Here are some suggestions to get you going:

    • Ground Chuck: Ground chuck is the perfect meat for patties. We recommend a lean 80/20.
    • Seasoning: Keep it simple with salt and pepper, or mix it up with garlic and onion powder, paprika, or your own favorite seasoning blend.
    • Cheese: Go classic with American or cheddar cheese for cheeseburgers, or switch it up with something like pepper jack or swiss. Skip the cheese altogether if you prefer.
    • Hamburger Buns: Use your favorite kind of bun for serving. We like brioche buns, but any type works fine.
    • Toppings: Add your favorite toppings like lettuce, tomatoes, onions, pickles, caramelized onions (yum!), and more.
    • Condiments: Top with mayo, mustard, ketchup, burger sauce, relish or any other condiment you like!

    The key to achieving the most delicious Stovetop Burger is to keep things simple. Just let the juicy beef speak for itself.

    How long do you cook burgers on the stove? (medium-rare to well-done)

    If you're unsure how long to cook your burgers for, we've got you covered. Here are the ideal internal temperatures and cooking times (per side and total) for the perfect burgers made in a skillet. (For more information, check out our Meat Temperature Guide):

    • Medium Rare: 135°F (57°C) -- Cook for 3 minutes per side, 6 minutes total.
    • Medium: 145°F (63°C) -- Cook for 4 minutes per side, 8 minutes total.
    • Medium Well: 150°F (66°C) -- Cook for 5 minutes per side, 10 minutes total.
    • Well Done: 160°F (71°C) -- Cook for 6 minutes per side, 12 minutes total.

    Now you know how to cook the perfect Stovetop Burger every time. So go ahead and impress your friends and family with your newfound culinary skills!

    how to make burger patties and cook burgers on the stovetop step by step photo instructions

    Doneness levels, cooking times, and temperature for burger perfection

    If you're looking for the ideal burger, it all comes down to the level of doneness you prefer. Here's a guide:

    • Medium-Rare: red in the middle, internal temperature of 130-135°F, cook for 3 minutes per side and 6 minutes in total
    • Medium: pink in the middle, internal temperature of 145°F, cook for 3-4 minutes per side and 7-8 minutes in total
    • Medium-Well: with a smidge of pink, internal temperature of 150-155°F, cook for 4-5 minutes per side and 9 minutes in total
    • Well-Done: with no pink, internal temperature of 160-165°F, cook for 5 minutes per side and 10 minutes in total

    Note: According to the FDA, burger patties should be cooked to an internal temperature of 160°F to ensure that all bacteria is killed. However, if you prefer a Medium cook, ensure that you're using the freshest beef or making your own ground beef.

    How to season burger patties

    For the perfect burger, seasoning is key. Simply add salt, pepper, and any additional seasonings you desire to the ground chuck in a mixing bowl. Mix the seasoning thoroughly, but take care not to overwork it. Some popular seasonings to try include garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, cayenne pepper, brown sugar, and oregano.

    close up on a cheeseburger

    Internal temperature for burgers

    When it comes to cooking burgers, an internal temperature of between 135-160°F is recommended based on your preferred level of doneness. Refer to the burger cooking chart provided above for more specific guidance.

    How to make a cheeseburger on the stovetop

    To transform a hamburger into a cheeseburger, simply place a slice of cheese on top of the cooked burger patty. Remove the pan from heat and cover it with a lid to allow the leftover heat to melt the cheese.

    Cooking frozen burger patties on the stove

    Cooking frozen burger patties directly on the stovetop is not recommended. Instead, thaw the patties in the fridge before cooking.

    Thickness of burger patties

    Ideally, burger patties should be around 1-inch thick. If they're any thicker, there's a chance they'll get too dry and crispy on the outside before cooking all the way through in the center.

    Shaping burger patties

    Divide the seasoned ground chuck into 4 equal parts and loosely shape each portion into a round patty by hand, and it doesn't need to be perfect.

    Cooking burgers in butter or oil

    If you want a richer flavor and more traditionally pan-fried result, use butter. However, oil is also a good option!

    How to tell when a burger is done cooking

    The best way to determine if a burger is correctly cooked is to use an instant-read meat thermometer to check the internal temperature at the center of each patty.

    How to store and reheat burger patties

    Once cooked, allow burger patties to cool to room temperature. You can then store them in a resealable bag, airtight container, or wrapped tightly in aluminum foil. They can be refrigerated for up to 4 days.

    stovetop hamburgers on a plate with potato chips

    The Best Method to Reheat Burgers

    For optimal results, it is recommended to reheat burgers in a non-stick pan on the stovetop until they reach a fully heated temperature. To prevent the patties from drying out, try adding roughly 3 tablespoons of water to the pan to create steam.

    The Freezing Process for Burger Patties

    To freeze homemade burger patties, ensure they have cooled entirely, then wrap each patty separately with aluminum foil. Store the wrapped patties in a freezer-safe, resealable bag and freeze for up to 3 months. Before reheating, allow the patties to fully defrost in the fridge.

    Side Dishes to Serve with Burgers

    The most delicious stovetop burgers deserve the best accompaniments! Classic French fries are always a favorite, or try baked sweet potato fries, shoestring fries, parmesan potato wedges, or even zucchini fries. Alternatively, consider serving corn on the cob, homemade coleslaw, air fried tater tots, BBQ baked beans, baked potatoes, corn casserole, or any classic BBQ side dishes.

    If you try this recipe, please share your picture and ratings in the comments section below. Enjoy! You can also jump right to the recipe by clicking on this link.

    To cook the burgers, mix the ground chuck in a medium-sized bowl with salt and pepper. Do not overwork the meat. Divide the meat into four portions of equal size, then gently press each portion onto a plate to create a 1-inch thick, round patty. Create a moat approximately ¼-½ inch around the circumference, ensuring the edge of the burger is higher than the indentation to allow it to flatten while cooking. Repeat with each portion.

    Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and place the patties in the skillet, leaving space between each patty. Cook the burgers until nicely seared and browned halfway up the sides, then flip them and cook to your liking. If you add cheese, remove the pan from heat and place the cheese atop the burgers, then cover the skillet and allow residual heat to melt the cheese.

    Serve on a toasted bun with your preferred toppings and condiments such as ketchup, mustard, and mayo. Burger internal temperature should reach 160°F to ensure all bacteria has been destroyed.

    Burger Internal Temperature Chart: bear in mind 160°F is the optimal temperature to cook burgers, according to the FDA.

    Achieving the Perfect Burger: Temperature and Timing Matters

    When it comes to cooking burgers, the perfect temperature can make all the difference, and we've got you covered on all the delicious details. Cooking a burger to medium rare at 130-135°F provides a juicy, red center, while medium at 145°F will offer a pink but fully cooked center. If you prefer a slight touch of pink, medium well at 150-155°F is the way to go. Finally, for those who like their burgers fully cooked, well-done at 160-165°F is the ideal temperature.

    To achieve these perfection temperatures on the stove, follow these simple cooking times: for medium rare (red in the middle), cook for a total of 6 minutes (3 minutes on each side); for medium (pink in the middle), cook for a total of 7-8 minutes; for medium-well (smidge of pink in the middle), cook for a total of 9 minutes; and for well-done (no pink), cook for a total of 10 minutes.

    After cooking, be sure to properly store any leftover burger patties in the fridge for up to four days or freeze for up to three months.

    In terms of nutrition, one burger has 485kcal, with 22g of carbohydrates (7%), 27g of protein (54%), and 30g of fat (46%), including 12g of saturated fat (75%). It also contains 101mg of cholesterol (34%), 641mg of sodium (28%), 388mg of potassium (11%), and 3g of sugar (3%). Providing vitamin A (200IU, 4%), vitamin C (0.6mg, 1%), calcium (314mg, 31%), and iron (3.8mg, 21%), a burger is one satisfying meal.

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    For more burger-cooking inspiration, check out The Cookie Rookie, which is filled with easy-to-follow recipes that are perfect for any level of culinary expertise. So, get cooking and enjoy the delicious world of burgers! And while you're at it, subscribe to have our latest burger recipes and cooking tips delivered straight to your inbox, and get our free ebook as a welcome gift.

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