My boyfriend Jorge came up with this recipe. His burgers start with a mixture of freshly ground beef chuck, short rib, and bacon. He works sharp cheddar cheese directly into the burger blend, then throws them on a hot charcoal grill. As the burgers cook, the bits of cheese distributed throughout get melty and gooey. Sandwiched between a toasted brioche bun, this bacon cheeseburger is finished with our favorite toppings: butter lettuce, heirloom tomatoes, red onion, pickles, mayonnaise, mustard, and ketchup. —Kitchen Konfidence
Test Kitchen Notes
When I asked the butcher at my local grocery store for 1/2 pound each of beef chuck and short rib (I cut the recipe in half), he clearly thought I was nuts. I told him what I was going to do with it, and he said it “sounded like quite the experiment.”
And a delicious experiment at that! Grinding the bacon directly into the patty added a rich smokiness. My burgers tasted like they had come straight off of the grill, even though I had cooked them indoors. Be sure to grate your cheese coarsely -- I grated mine too fine, and it got lost in the mix. Delicious! —Cate
beef chuck, cut into 1-inch pieces
boneless beef short rib, cut into 1-inch pieces
bacon, sliced into 1-inch pieces
sharp cheddar cheese, grated
Freshly ground black pepper
Canola oil, for the grill
Toasted brioche buns, for serving
Optional toppings: butter lettuce, heirloom tomato slices, red onion slices, pickle slices, mayo, dijon mustard, and ketchup
Start by grinding the chuck, short rib, and bacon in a meat grinder or food processor. Here's  my easy tutorial on how to grind meat in a food processor.
Place freshly ground meat in a large bowl and mix in the sharp cheddar, 1 1/2 teaspoons of kosher salt*, and 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Using your hands, mix gently to distribute the cheese and seasonings. Do not overmix!
Form the meat mixture into 8 even patties, pressing a slight indent into the center of each. This will keep the patties from becoming domed when they cook.
Prepare an outdoor grill, preferably charcoal, to high heat. Moisten a paper towel with a little canola oil, and, using tongs, brush the grill grate with the oiled paper towel. Grill the burgers over direct heat for 8 to 10 minutes, until the outside has some char, the cheese is melty, and the inside is cooked through. Because this burger has ground bacon in it, you'll want to avoid cooking it to rare. We cook it to medium each time, and it's plenty juicy. Let the burgers rest for a few moments before serving.
To serve, place a burger patty on a toasted bun, then layer on your desired toppings. I stacked mine like this: toasted bottom bun, mayo-mustard mix, lettuce, burger patty, tomato, onion, pickles, ketchup, toasted top bun.
*We usually season this mixture with 1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons of kosher salt. You should season to taste. Start by mixing in 1 1/2 teaspoons, then cook off a small amount of the mixture on the grill or even on the stove top. Taste the test "burger", and add more salt if needed. Once you've figured out how much salt you like in your burger blend, make a note for future batches.
Kitchen Konfidence is a collection of recipes and techniques aimed to inspire the home cook to do more in the kitchen.
About Brandon: I enjoy cooking with seasonal ingredients, making ice cream and shaking up some killer cocktails. When I am not cooking and taking pictures of my food, I am at the beach, carousing with friends, taking day trips up the 5, or engaging in all manner of computer geekery.