7 Tips for Making a Better Burger — Guy's Grocery Games

Inspired by Guy's Grocery Games, learn seven tips for making a better burger.

This week it was all about burgers on Guy's Grocery Games. And the contestants got pretty crazy with their burger toppings (hello, lobster and fancy mushrooms), so we in Food Network Kitchen decided to go back to basics. Here are some tips for making your burger patties great:

1. Get into the grind: Grinding your own meat is best, but if you aren’t able to, look for an 80/20 (that means 80 percent lean beef and 20 percent fat) blend of ground beef.

2. Keep it cool: Refrigerate your beef until you are ready to form or cook it. Don’t give any of the fat a chance to start warming up at room temperature.

3. Be gentle: Once your beef is portioned out, be sure to gently form it into 3/4-to-1 inch thick patties.

4. Add a dimple: Use your thumb to make an indentation in the center of each patty. This quick extra step keeps your patty from shrinking up while it cooks.

5. Now it's time for salt: Be sure to wait until after your patties are formed to season the meat, generously, with kosher salt and pepper if you like.

6. Get cooking: We love using a hot cast-iron pan or griddle to cook burgers in Food Network Kitchen. You get a nice crunchy outer crust that way.

7. Thermometers are your friend: Don't be afraid to use an instant-read digital thermometer to make sure your burger is done to your liking. Here are the numbers to remember: rare, 120 degrees F; medium-rare, 130 degrees F; medium, 140 degrees F; medium-well, 150 degrees F and well-done, 160 degrees F.

Tune in next Sunday at 8|7c to see who dominates the grocery aisles.

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