DIY Food

Tips for Grilling the Perfect (Non-Puffy) Burger

June 15, 2013

There are so many great conversations on the Hotline -- it's hard to choose a favorite. But we'll be doing it, once a week, to spread the wealth of our community's knowledge -- and to keep the conversation going.

If you haven't done so already, it’s time to break out your best barbecue recipes and head outside. Grilling season is in full swing. We know there are a lot of different dishes you can be grilling (and we aren’t shy about sharing our best grilling tips), but today we’re focusing on burgers.

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Not many people are fans of burgers that look like beach balls -- so how do you avoid puffiness? And what else factors into producing perfect burgers? 

  • SeaJambon noted that many of us unintentionally compound the problem by making puff-prone patties with thinner edges and a mound in the middle -- so thoughtful burger formation is a good start.
  • A number of people are fans of the indentation trick to reduce the puff-factor, but sexyLAMBCHOPx shared that the need for the dimple depends on how the burger is cooked.
  • pierino recommends exercising restraint with the spatula: only flipping the burgers once, rather than turning them constantly. Sam1148 uses the same technique, even if science doesn't back it up.

What are your best tips and tricks for creating beautiful burgers? Jump over to the question on the Hotline, or continue the conversation in the comments below! (Don’t forget to decide what type of cheese to put on your burger!)

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • diaday
  • NHpedi
  • Lindsay-Jean Hard
    Lindsay-Jean Hard
I like esoteric facts about vegetables. Author of the IACP Award-nominated cookbook, Cooking with Scraps.


diaday June 15, 2013
Check out the spelling of "burger" in the headline!
Lindsay-Jean H. June 15, 2013
Thanks for catching that!
NHpedi June 15, 2013
Don't squish them!!!!!!!!!