Smoked Burger secret?

Discussion in 'Beef' started by jerimiah, Jan 25, 2011.

  1. I was at my local BBQ supplier and started a conversation with their smoker expert.  He mentioned he had spent 8 years perfecting a smoked burger with no binders in it.  Then promptly advised that after 8 years he wasn't going to share his secret on how to smoke a burger without it falling apart in the smoker.  Anyone have some recipes/ideas they can share on smoking burgers (time/temp/recipe)?  Would love to try my hand at smoking a burger but I don't like to go in blind.

    whenderson88 likes this.
  2. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    Don'y know if this guys pulling your leg or what but it seems that  you make the burger patty and throw it on the smoker and leave it alone would work.

     Only time i add anything to hambuger besides seasoning is when i smoke a meat loaf . I add two eggs to the mix.

     Smoke em to 170°f

    When smoking meat there is no reason to flip it or move it like when grilling.
    bigdaddyeebs likes this.
  3. rbranstner

    rbranstner Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I smoke burgers and stuffed burgers all the time and they don't blow open or crumble. I always like to add an egg or two and some crackers or oatmeal, horseradish sauce and maybe some BBQ sauce in my burgers for flavor and consistency. I smoke them at what ever temp I am smoking the other meat at the time and pull them once they reach 160ish. I guess I have never ran into the issue where they crumble apart. I guess I don't see the reason you can't add a binder. I like the extra ingredients for flavor. But that's just me. I have never tried it with just  plain burger without the extra ingredients because I have never had any reason not to add them.
  4. placebo

    placebo Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I agree with eman, there is no need for binders to smoke a burger unless your making meatloaf. I prefer to reverse sear them however. Put em in the smoker for 30 minutes or so to get a good smoke flavor then toss em on a nice hot grill. Yum!
  5. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I smoke them all the time with nothing added. They stay together fine.
  6. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member


    I'm with everyone else here and say that I smoke and grill burgers some. I haven't had many fall apart as long as you don't go playing with your burger. Now that also means no swishing it down too.
  7. How does stuffing a burger (say with  chunk of cheese) effect cooking times and the capacity to take temperature?  Would I just leave one burger unstuffed for taking temperature?  I know you cook by temp and not time but how long on average does it take to do a burger with/without grilling (2 hours)?  What kind of wood do you use? Just need an estimate for my first time attempt (most likely this weekend).

    Thanks in advance to everyone. 

    PS: I bought Jeff's rub and sauce this week to support the web site!!!  I find myself coming to this sight quite a bit.  I might not post as much as I should but I love reading the recipes and tips and seeing the Qview's.  Felt it was time to show my support for the website!!!
    tulsajeff and garyhibbert like this.
  8. rbranstner

    rbranstner Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    They cook pretty close to the same as far as I have seen but I suppose it all depends on what you stuff them with and how thick your burgers are. I take the temp the same as I would with any cut of meat I just stick a thermometer in one of them or after an hour I will check them with my instant read thermometer. Depending on the temps you are smoking at and what finishing temp you are looking for they are usually done in 1-1.5 hours from what I have experienced. I just double checked my post on my first stuffed burgers which were huge (1lb of meat in each) and I was smoking at 250 and they were done in an hour. I am usually throwing burgers on while I am smoking something else so some times I may be smoking at 225 and some times I could be as high at 275 so I just have to watch the internal temp of the burgers to know when they are done but that should give you a general idea of how long to expect.
  9. scarbelly

    scarbelly Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I have done a lot of burgers too and I agree with Ross that about an hour maybe 1.30 is all you need for them. Depends on temp. I mostly stuff with onions, jalopenos, cheese. I usually cook the onions first to get them carmalized. Nothing like them at any restaruant I have found   
    whenderson88 likes this.
  10. meateater

    meateater Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    You can add some pink salt and they will stay solid, oops did I just give away my secret? [​IMG]
  11. caveman

    caveman Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    That guy with his 8 year old burger secret is pulling your chain.  What a bunch of hooey!!  Get them patties made & smoke some burgers up & you will find out quickly that they don't fall apart.  If you want to stuff em, stuff em.  I give mine a tad more time when stuffed.  Like RB said, like Eman said & like Mark (mballi) said.
  12. nwdave

    nwdave Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    [​IMG]   I'd be looking for a different store or refuse to talk to "the Expert".  Only time my burgers crumble is when I add too much goodness to them, then I figure that's my fault, not the meat.
  13. tzem143

    tzem143 Newbie

    Just did some tonight. A little sp&g and did mesquite wood at 250. Pulled off at 168 internal and let rest for 5-10 min. Awesome!!! It would be hard to go back to grilling them. Loved the flavor.
  14. lamar

    lamar Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Here is an alternative that works well as long as we have low temps.  I cold smoked a  couple of chuck roasts keeping the temp in the smoker below 40 for six hours yesterday.  Ground it up this am.   Have some good tasting burger.

    Putting patties in the smoker and cooking till done works well too as stated in above posts.
  15. dingo007

    dingo007 Smoking Fanatic

    I;ve been pondering the smoked burger deal for a while now..haven't done anything about it....busy with a few other meat projects..I have two thoughts and would appreciate feedback;

    (i) Grind, spice and bind my chuck with Cure #1, then cold smoke. My idea here is I could make a bunch of burgers and freeze them for later.


    (ii) Make my burgers and try the reverse sear method. I usually make em around 1/3lb so should be thick enough for a 30-60mins cold smoke and then bring up to rare, Sear over charcoal.

    I like the first idea as I can keep some in the freezer and just grill em up. The second sounds enticing, just not sure if reverse sear will work on ground meat.

  16. If his are falling apart he must be using a  100 / 0 blend too lean.  I use 80/20  Never had that happen to me

  17. carnivore371

    carnivore371 Newbie

    I'm glad I checked here first. Smoke burgers for weekend dinner it is. Looking forward to it!
  18. lumbo tim

    lumbo tim Newbie

  19. lumbo tim

    lumbo tim Newbie

    How do you cold smoke and keep the chuck below 40 ? Sorry I am a novice

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