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how to make burgers on the stovetop


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Servings: 5


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Step 1

Divide the ground beef. Divide the ground beef into 4 or 6 portions, depending on the number of burgers you would like to make.

Step 2

Shape the patties. Gently press each portion of ground beef into a disk about 1-inch thick. Press the middle to create a shallow "dimple" and pat the edges into a round — the patty should look like a frisbee and be slightly larger than your burger buns. Don't worry if there are some cracks in the edges; try not to mash the beef too much as you shape the patties.

Step 3

Warm the pan. Heat a pat of butter or a teaspoon of oil in a griddle or large skillet over medium heat.

Step 4

Toast the buns. Working in batches if needed, place the bun halves cut-side down in the warm butter or oil. Toast until the surface is golden-brown. Transfer the toasted buns to a serving plate.

Step 5

Increase the heat to medium-high. Increase the heat to medium-high, and keep a careful eye on the pan. When you see the first wisp of smoke, you're ready to cook the burgers.

Step 6

Cook the burgers for 3 to 5 minutes. Place the burger patties in the hot pan, leaving a little space between each one. Work in batches if necessary. The burgers should sizzle on contact — if they don't, nudge the heat up a little. Generously season with salt and pepper, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes.

Step 7

Flip the burgers and cook another 3 to 5 minutes. Quickly slide a spatula under the burgers and flip to the other side. You should see a dark brown sear on the underside — if not, increase your heat next time. Season the other side generously with salt and pepper, and cook for another 3 to 5 minutes to your preferred doneness. If the burger falls apart when you flip, just press the edges together and carry on — your burger will still be great!

Step 8

To make cheeseburgers. If making cheeseburgers, top the burgers with cheese as soon as you flip them. If the cheese isn't melting fast enough, cover the pan with a lid or other dome to encourage the cheese to melt.

Step 9

Finish the burgers. When the burgers have finished cooking, transfer them to the toasted buns and finish with your favorite burger toppings.

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