Whether it’s topped with sharp cheddar cheese, sour-sweet pickles, or crisp summer tomatoes, we’ve never met a burger we didn’t love. There’s no better occasion than Father’s Day to hang out at the grill with Dad. But before you grab your tongs, crack open a beer, and fire up the grill, read our top five tips to making better burgers:
1. Go easy on your patties
Loosely form ground meat into patties, as overworking will result in flavorless burgers. Make your patties thick enough so that they will be nice and juicy, but not so thick that they take forever to cook.
2. Spatulas are for flipping, not squashing
If you press your burgers down with a spatula, you’re actually squeezing all of the moisture of out them.
3. High heat = flavor and texture
Heat your grill to its highest temperature and start cooking your burgers over direct heat. After they have a nice char on both sides, finish cooking them over indirect heat to avoid scorching.
4. Give your burgers a break
The secret to juicy burgers? Rest them on a bed of paper towels for a few minutes after they’re cooked. Not only will you lock moisture into your burgers, the paper towels will drain any excess juice, preventing soggy buns.
5. Take buns seriously
Last, but not at all least, a lackluster bun can ruin even a perfectly cooked burger. The bun should not take away from the flavor of the meat or the other toppings. We like to give our buns a light toast on the grill—a little char gives a lot of flavor.
Now, it’s time to put your grilling skills to the test. We’ve chosen our best burger recipes for you, but also make sure to check out our Ultimate Grilling Guide for more delicious burger ideas. From all of us at Southern Living, Happy Father’s Day!