Picnic Week: Burgers

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May 21, 2013 by Renee

burger with pasta salad

Do you love to entertain? Do you live in a tiny duplex without a dining room table? Yeah, me too. I have an easy and beautiful solution. Invite all your friends on a picnic and entertain outdoors in the park.

It really couldn’t be easier. We brought everything we needed on our two scooters. We have a small cheap gas grill that’s easy to transport. I’ve seen people at the park who seem to bring half their kitchen with them, and that’s awesome for them. I’m much too lazy for all that, and it’s certainly not necessary. Everything you need for an awesome picnic can be carried by two people in one trip.

Whatever you do, make sure you have the making of an excellent burger. There’s nothing like a cheeseburger hot off the grill. It’s probably my favorite food. We even served cheeseburgers at our wedding.


If I persuade you to do one thing, it would be to walk away from the prefab patty. Do NOT eat those things. Making your own burgers is simple and at least eight million times better then those hockey pucks in the freezer section. You can season them anyway you like and the possibilities are endless.

Here are a few tips for outstanding burger action. First, fat is your friend. Be sure to buy ground beef that’s at least 15% fat. The good news is, the 80/20 stuff is usually the cheapest. Next, don’t go light on the seasonings. Give it a couple extra shakes. It’ll be fine. Finally, go ahead and pay the extra dollar for the good buns. It’s totally worth it.

Feeding Friends

If you haven’t gone on a picnic in a while, plan one right away. It’s a great way to spend time with your friends without having to clean up your kitchen. Plus, if you’re lucky, the view can be stunning.

Queen's Beach

DIY Cheeseburgers

This is more of a method than a recipe. You can add your favorite seasonings and flavors, but here’s what I put in my favorite burgers.

1-1/3 pounds (one package) ground beef 80/20
Approx 1 tsp (several shakes) of the following

  • salt
  • pepper
  • onion powder
  • garlic powder
  • chili powder
  • cayenne
  • dried oregano

1 Tbsp chili sauce
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup bread crumbs (eyeball it, enough to soak up the liquid)

  • Combine all ingredients with your hands.
  • Divide the mixture into 4 to 6 patties. Press them together firmly, but make sure not to pack it too tightly. Work quickly and handle the meat as little as possible to make sure it’s nice and juicy.
  • Store your burgers in the fridge until it’s time to grill.
  • Grill over medium high heat for about six to eight minutes a side.
  • Top with all your favorite toppings and stuff your face.

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