This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Meijer. The opinions and text are all mine.
Heat up your summer with these spicy burgers loaded with blue cheese, grilled jalapenos, and a sweet and spicy sauce slathered on top of a perfectly grilled beef patty!
Memorial Day is right around the corner and your lonely, dusty grill, that is currently hiding in the back corner of the garage, is ready to reclaim its moment in the sun. Let's skip the same ol' cookout this year and fire up something to wake up your taste buds instead!
I swung by my local Meijer to grab everything I need to kick off summer. Heck, last year I even bought my trusty grill there too! Meijer is always my go-to spot to complete my cookout shopping list because they have a fantastic liquor department, exceptionally fresh produce, and flavorful Certified Angus Beef perfect for grilling!
When you stop in, you may even want to pick up an extra lawn chair or two to accommodate all of the neighbors that will be flocking to your house once they smell those burgers sizzling on the grill!
Best Burgers for Grilling
The best burgers start with the best beef. There are a few things you need to look for to ensure you get consistently juicy and flavorful burgers every time. I always recommend using 80/20 beef for burgers. It has the perfect fat ratio to ensure each bite is exceptionally juicy, without tasting greasy.
Fresh ground chuck is one of my favorite grinds for burgers because it typically already has the ideal 80/20 fat ratio, plus you know all of the meat came from a single cut of meat (the chuck roast) rather than an assortment of various trimmings.
Since a homemade burger is only as good as the meat used, save that frozen hunk of ground beef lingering in the bottom of your freezer for taco night. You want fresh high-quality beef like Certified Angus Beef to ensure your burgers have maximum flavor.
Don't get me wrong, I love a classic bacon cheeseburger as much as the next guy, but sometimes it is nice to veer off the beaten path a bit. These spicy burgers are topped with a generous handful of blue cheese, and grilled jalapenos then drizzled with a sweet and spicy mixture of Franks Red Hot Sauce (found in Meijer's condiment aisle) and balsamic vinegar.
How to Grill Burgers
Grill these burgers directly over the hottest part of the grill, flipping only once. Do not fall into the temptation of pressing on your burger patties with a spatula to help them cook. Not only does it do nothing to help the burger cook, it actually expels all of the juice from the burger, creating an exceptionally dry patty.
Once the patty has been flipped you can top them with the blue cheese, this will help the cheese melt, giving it an even creamier flavor. For more burger grilling tips, check out my tutorial on How to Grill Burgers.
Best Burger Buns
The best burger buns allow the burger patty and toppings to be the star of the show. For this reason you want to avoid overly dense buns, or exceptionally chewy breads. My ideal burger bun is light and airy, like brioche. Well, I guess I shouldn't say "like" brioche, brioche is my hands down favorite bun to use for burgers, followed by potato buns, and pretzel buns.
Brioche buns have been hard to find until recently, I have even gone so far as to special order them from bakeries and restaurants. However, I recently discovered Meijer actually sells Gourmet Grillers brioche buns in the bread aisle! Their Gourmet Grillers pretzel buns would also be a great pairing with this recipe.
What to Serve at a Cookout
No cookout is complete without all of the fixin's. Meijer has a great selection of canned craft beers, which are perfect for poolside enjoyment, as well as all of the salty sides your taste buds desires! My personal favorite combo is the Meijer brand Salt and Vinegar kettle chips with New Glarus Moon Man.
Be sure to swing through the produce department and grab some fresh watermelon and sweet corn. There are few things better than grilled corn on the cob!
- 1 pound fresh ground chuck
- salt & pepper
- 2 jalapenos (sliced into rounds)
- ½ cup blue cheese (or as desired)
- 3 leaves green leaf lettuce
- 3 brioche buns
- 1 tablespoon Franks Red Hot Sauce
- 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 dash fresh ground pepper
- Equally divide ground beef into three separate portions and press into patties without overworking the meat.
- Cook sliced jalapenos until slightly charred but still crisp, roughly 2 minutes, flipping occasionally. (this can be done on the grill with a vegetable basket, or in a skillet on the stove)
- Liberally sprinkle each side of the patties with salt and pepper and place on the grill over the hottest part of the coals, or in a skillet on the stove set over medium-high heat. Let cook until a brown crust forms, then flip the patty and continue cooking until it reaches your desired level of doneness. Blue cheese can be sprinkled on the patty once it has been flipped.
- While burgers finish cooking lightly toast the interior of the hamburger buns.
- Assemble burger by placing green leaf lettuce on the bottom bun, top with burger patty, blue cheese, grilled jalapenos, and sauce.
- Mix together hot sauce, balsamic vinegar, and fresh ground pepper.
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