Why a Juicy Steak Burger Will Make You Rethink the Burger

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cooked juicy steak burger

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They say if you’ve had juicy steak burgers, you’ll never go back to a regular burger. The ridiculously juicy steak and burger combo will likely make your mouth water just by looking at it.

Steak ‘n Shake is known as the original steak burger restaurant, creating a steak burger recipe for its customers back in the 1930s. Now, thousands of restaurants have created their own steakhouse burger recipes for patrons to enjoy.

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If you want to know all about this delicious type of burger and the best way to cook steak burgers, you’ve come to the right place.

What is a Steak Burger?

The steak burger is also known as a steakhouse burger, mainly because you can find them easily in steakhouses, often in several different recipes. As the name suggests, this burger is a cross between a beef burger and a steak. Rather than using a beef patty for the burger, chefs use a steak patty for the meat.

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Chefs prepare the juicy steak burger in several ways, much like a hamburger. Go old school with ketchup or mustard, lettuce, tomato, onion, and cheese. Or, try some bolder toppings, like jalapenos, bacon, fried onions, and even other meats. The sky is the limit when it comes to this type of burger.

What Makes the Steak ‘n Shake Steakburger So Famous?

Steak ‘n Shake was truly a pioneer in its forward thinking that burgers don’t just need to be made out of traditional ground beef. Instead, the company introduced the steakburger, made with real, delicious steak cuts that are full of flavor and have a more tender texture than regular burgers. The restaurant chain may not be the only one that uses steakburgers for its recipes now, but it does have the bragging rights of calling itself the first restaurant to do so.

The steakburger became so popular with customers that other places were quick to catch onto the trend. It’s now not uncommon to find steakburger options in place of a traditional ground beef burger patty at steakhouses and burger restaurants. 

People have also taken it upon themselves to recreate Steak ‘n Shake’s popular steakburger recipes from the comfort of their own home, proving just how revolutionary this burger idea has become. “How to make steak burgers” has become a common search term for those looking to replicate some of their favorite perfect burger options made from steak without leaving home.

What’s the Difference Between Steak Patties and Beef Patties?

A hamburger consists of ground beef using various meats from a cow. Although steak comes from the same animal, you get a better grade of meat with a steak patty.

Steak is usually ground with a grinder or chopped using a food processor to form the patty. But, the patty will come from a specific steak cut, much like you’d order from a restaurant. A ground steak burger, then, is usually more expensive than a hamburger because you’re getting an actual cut of steak in patty form rather than the leftovers you get in a beef patty.

The grade of meat is what helps keep a steak patty super juicy and flavorful if cooked correctly. Most steak patties are leaner with a lower fat content than beef patties, and they will dry out quickly if you don’t cook them properly.

Are Steak Burgers Always Made with Ground Steak?

Steakburgers are usually made in the same way that ground beef hamburger patties are with a grinding process that chops up the meat to make it easily moldable into a patty. However, this isn’t the only way that you can make patties from steak to create your perfect burger.

Some restaurants and people who enjoy steakburgers at home have adopted a different technique: Adding steak in its whole form to a toasted bun instead of a ground patty. In other words, you cut the steak from the bone to make a boneless portion, cook it to your desired level of doneness, and add it to the bun with your favorite toppings. It’s like a burger steak that combines everything you love about hamburgers and steak.

Here at Chicago Steak Company, you can choose the option you like best. We offer gourmet steakburger patties that are already ground and shaped into bun-sized patties for you. But we also have boneless cuts that will do the job as the meat on your juicy burger. Our boneless strip steaks and boneless ribeye steaks, for example, can be cut to fit your bun for a steakburger with unbeatable flavor.

What Type of Steak is Used for a Steak Burger?

You might notice a restaurant with a broad variety of steak burgers on the menu. There might be a sirloin steak burger, rib steak burger, or even lamb steak burgers. Why so many options?

Just like restaurants offer several steak cuts to choose from, they often do the same with burgers made from steak. One of the biggest reasons they do this is so people with all budgets can still enjoy this type of burger by choosing a less expensive cut. Plus, some people prefer the flavor of specific steak cuts over others and want that flavor to translate to their burgers.

It you’re not necessarily a beef steak fan, some restaurants offer other options, like a lamb steak or pork steak burger.

One of the most common steaks to use is a beefsteak. However, Angus, sirloin, and prime rib burgers are all quite popular in today’s steakhouses. Chuck steak is the perfect choice for a steak burger recipe because it has a decent amount of fat content to keep it juicy in addition to its bold flavor.

How to Make Steak Burgers

Are you ready to try making steakburgers at home? Fortunately, if you already know how to make hamburger patties from scratch, you won’t have much of a problem transitioning your cooking skills to steakburgers. 

Your first step is choosing the type of steak you want (check out the section above if you missed it to help you decide). Once you’ve done that, keep reading to learn how to make steakburgers in the comfort of your kitchen.

Can I Grind My Own Steak Burger Patties?

Absolutely, but you don’t need to. Chicago Steak Company offers ground steakburger patties that are already prepared with its award-winning meat and ready for you to cook and serve. You can also ask a butcher to grind your choice pieces of steak when you visit, although this may add some extra costs to your bill. Some butchers may already have ground steak available for you to purchase.

Grinding your own steakburger patties, however, can be a great way to ensure that you’re getting exactly what you want in your burgers. For example, you can keep as much fat content as you want or go for a leaner patty by trimming the fat before grinding. Grinding your steak also gives you the freshest meat, unlike buying it from the grocery store or butcher, where it could be sitting for hours before your purchase.

Here are a few tips that can help you grind your own steak for burger patties:

  • Wash your hands before and after touching the steak. Clean and sanitize your grinder as soon as possible after using it.
  • Only grind the meat when it’s cold to prevent it from turning mushy in the grinder. It also ensures that your meat stays at a safe temperature and doesn’t get too warm in the process.
  • Also keep your grinder cold, which will help the meat stay cold as it grinds.
  • Cube your steak first. Breaking it up into small, 1-inch chunks will help it move through the grinder.
  • If using two types of steaks, add them together in the grinder to ensure an even mix.
  • When shaping the ground meat into patties, try not to overpack them. Keeping them a little loose allows the natural juices to move through the steak for better flavor and texture.

How to Make Steakburgers

There are a lot of ways to spice up your steakburgers, and we definitely recommend adding a little spice to the mix – even if it’s just with some kosher salt and black pepper. Or, use steak seasoning to get some extra kick into every bite of your burger (we recommend trying the Chicago Steak Seasoning for just the right blend of steak spices!).

Add your choice of spices to a bowl with the ground steak. Use your hands to combine the ingredients thoroughly. You might also add a little steak sauce, Worcestershire sauce, or even a little beef broth or mushroom gravy to kick up the flavor profile a bit. 

Then, use your hands also to shape the meat into patties. Generally, you can make four patties from 1 to 1 ½ pounds of ground steak, but the patty size you make is up to you. Avoid going too big, though, or you may end up with some overcooked outsides and undercooked insides.

Pack the patties until they’re slightly loose to keep them juicy as they cook. You can make a small imprint with your thumb in the middle of each patty to keep them from being too thick and allowing the center to cook evenly with the rest of the patty.

If you’re using pieces of whole boneless steak instead of ground steak, you can simply mix your chosen spices together in a bowl and rub the mixture into all sides of each piece of steak.

Now, let’s talk about cooking those delicious steak patties!

The Best Ways to Cook Steakburgers

What’s the best way to cook steak burgers? There are actually a few ways that you can cook these burgers and bring out their best flavors. Make sure you season your patties as needed first, and then try these methods:

  • Oven. Cook your patties on a non-stick baking sheet in a preheated 375-degrees oven. Cook between four to six minutes on each side, depending on your desired level of doneness. Optionally, you can sear your burgers in a pan on the stove before putting them in the oven.
  • Grill. Since steak burgers don’t have a lot of fat content, grilling is a safe way to cook them if you’re looking for a smokier flavor. Place your burgers on the high-heat part of your grill for two to three minutes for each side. Then, move them to the low-heat part of the grill for an additional two to six minutes to reach your desired level of doneness.
  • Pan. It’s usually best to use a cast iron skillet if you’re cooking your patties on the stove. Brush your patties with a small amount of oil and allow to cook over medium-high heat for about three minutes on each side, or a bit more for extra doneness.

Best Buns for Steakburgers

There is really no wrong way to go when choosing a hamburger bun for your steakburger. Most hamburger bun options that you’d use for a traditional burger also pair perfectly with a steakburger. We love gourmet options like a brioche bun or a ciabatta roll, for example, especially when we’re kicking up the steakburger with a gourmet recipe. But a Kaiser roll or sesame seed bun work just fine for most steakburgers, too.

If you’re looking for something a little different, though, you might try a potato hamburger bun, a poppyseed bun, or even a garlic bread knot sliced in half. We also love a pretzel bun paired with steak or a Hawaiian-style bun to match tropical flavors of sweet chili sauce or pineapple as burger toppings.

Steak Burger Recipe Inspiration

The steakburger is such a versatile option, which is why we want to give you some recipe inspiration. Although you can grill burgers and pile them with traditional toppings like onion, lettuce, and tomato, there’s so much more to do with steakburgers that you may not have thought about yet.

Use these recipe inspiration guidelines to create one-of-a-kind steakburgers that will totally have you rethinking the beef patty and your traditional toppings.

Steakburger with Herb Butter

Herb butter compliments regular steak so well that you can’t not try it on a steakburger! A recipe like this is also open to interpretation, so feel free to add your favorite herbs to the butter, which you’ll spread onto both sides of the bun. You can also spread a little on the tops of the buns and bake them for a few minutes (or toss them on the grill with your steak) to crisp them before adding the patty.

Spicy Bacon Steakburger

Spice and bacon are the perfect match – especially when they go on a steakburger. Add your favorite spices – like chili pepper flakes or cayenne pepper – to the ground meat before forming it into patties. Top with hot sauce or buffalo sauce and a few strips of crispy bacon. Pepper Jack or mozzarella cheese add a little flavor. Add pickles, lettuce, and tomato to balance the heat for a cool, refreshing bite. 

BBQ Grilled Steakburger

A stovetop burger is great in a pinch, but we love a good grilled steakburger – especially when there’s barbecue sauce involved! Toward the last five minutes of cooking the burgers on the grill, spread your favorite BBQ sauce on each side. Assemble your burger with a little more sauce, your favorite cheese, and grilled onion. If you want to get daring, add some barbecue baked beans on top, too.

Smothered Steakburger

When we say “smothered,” we mean smothered! Mushrooms, onions, and mozzarella cheese are excellent toppings for a bold, flavorful steakburger. Sauté mushrooms and onions in butter until they’re tender and slightly browned. Add mozzarella cheese to the burger in the last couple of minutes of cooking to get it melting. Top your burger with plenty of mushrooms and onions and enjoy.

Hawaiian-Style Steakburger

A Hawaiian-style burger is always a hit in terms of bringing together savory and sweet flavors. Use Hawaiian-style buns for the burgers and top them with a sweet chili or spicy mango sauce, lettuce, tomato, onion, and thinly sliced pineapple rings. Add a kick of heat to the burgers with some red pepper flakes before forming them into patties or by topping off the burgers with a few jalapeno slices.

Salisbury Steakburger

Combine your steakburger with the yummy flavors of Salisbury steak. Season your burgers to your preferences. Then, slice some mushrooms and onions, sauté them with butter in a hot pan, and add brown gravy to the mixture. Top your burgers with swiss cheese slices and the mushroom and onion mixture.

Steakburger with Gravy

If you’re on a low-carb diet or just want to skip the bun, you can still enjoy a steakburger. In fact, these patties tend to be so flavorful that they stand alone with your favorite toppings just fine. One way some people enjoy them bunless is with a little gravy drizzled on top. You can even use the Salisbury steakburger or smothered steakburger recipe inspirations to create a bunless burger that’s 100% satisfying as the main staple of your meal.

Steakburger Sliders

Turn your favorite steakburger recipe into sliders when you’re feeding the family or having company over. Section off each ½-pound patty into four parts (or two parts if using our 4-ounce steakburger patties), making them mini patties that are perfectly sized for quick bites. You can prepare several different toppings and sauces for a build-your-own-slider vibe that makes for a fun, different way to do dinner. 

Sides to Pair with Your Steak Burger

Are you looking for the perfect side dish to pair with your steakburger? You might be surprised by how many delicious side dishes you can make with your steakburgers, whether you want a steakhouse-inspired dinner or want to go a little more gourmet for your meal.

French fries are a burger’s staple side dish, and there’s no reason you can’t add fries to your upgraded steakburger, too. We recommend going with steakhouse-inspired fries, like steak fries, if you want to go traditional. Or, bump up the flavor profile by tossing French fries in a garlic parmesan mixture. You can also add a gourmet twist to fries by making truffle fries, which are drizzled in truffle oil before baking and garnished with some salt, parmesan cheese, and parsley.

If you’re looking for something a little heartier, try your favorite baked bean recipe. There are plenty of ways to boost baked beans with different flavors and spices. For a spicy kick, add some cayenne pepper and jalapenos to the mix. Or, toss in some homemade teriyaki sauce for a unique twist. 

You can also go simple with veggie side dishes. We love a good salad paired with a steakburger, as it adds a nice balance to the richness of the steak. A Mediterranean chopped salad is full of flavor, yet such a light and fresh pairing for a burger. Zucchini chips can also be a healthier alternative to fries or chips while still giving you that delicious crunch you’re looking for. Honey roasted carrots are another perfect option for healthily elevating your dish. Ratatouille works wonders here, too.

Finally, reach for the potatoes! We all know how beautifully steak and potatoes work together and putting your steak on a hamburger bun doesn’t change that fact. Make your favorite mashed potato recipe (we’re partial to garlic mashed potatoes!) or fry up some chopped potatoes in a pan and top them with caramelized onion, mushroom, salt, and pepper for seasoning.

A Final Word on Steakhouse Burgers

It’s no wonder that Angus burger recipes have become so popular the past couple of years. Burgers made from steak can take on a variety of flavors and are typically leaner than hamburger patties. So, not only do they taste great, but they’re a bit healthier, too. Check out the awesome selection of steak burgers from Chicago Steak Company, like Premium Angus and Half-Pound Gourmet burgers. If you have a steak burgers recipe to share, let us know. We love to see what our happy customers are cooking up!