Classic Cheeseburger

This classic cheeseburger, made with freshly ground chuck, salt, and pepper, and topped with your favorite condiments, is proof that some of the best things in life are the simplest things.

Two classic cheeseburgers with red onion and pickles on sesame buns on a wooden serving board.

When I lived in New York, there was a restaurant that I went to every Friday night for dinner that served the best cheeseburgers in the whole wide world—cheeseburgers so good that the line out the door would not deter me. The wait was so worth it. I finally cracked the code as to why these juicy, beefy burgers were so good; all I had to do was ask. The cook told me they grind chuck roast fresh every day, fire up the grill really hot, and use kosher salt for flavoring. Sometimes the less you fuss with something, the better. So simple. No fuss. Just pure beef.–Cristina Ferrare

Classic Cheeseburger

  • Quick Glance
  • Quick Glance
  • 20 M
  • 20 M
  • Serves 6
Print RecipeBuy the Cristina Ferrare’s Big Bowl of Love cookbook

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Ingredients


Directions

Shape the ground chuck into 6 patties, each about 1/2-inch thick. Be careful not to pack the meat too tightly or you’ll end up with dry burgers. Sprinkle a healthy pinch of salt over each burger. Crack some pepper over the top as well.

Prepare a grill or place a grill pan or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat for 3 minutes.

Place the burger over the heat, seasoned side down. Toss some salt and pepper over the now top of the burgers and cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Flip the burgers and cook for 2 minutes more. Flip the burgers again and grill for 1 minute more. Flip the burgers again, place a slice of cheese on each burger, and cook for 1 minute more. The burgers will be medium-rare. If you prefer your burgers cooked medium to well-done, transfer them to a cooler part of the grill or reduce the heat under the pan to medium-low and leave the burgers on the heat a little longer.

Transfer the burgers to a warm plate but do not cover them. Place the hamburger buns, cut side down, on the heat and warm until the desired toastiness.

Assemble the burgers and buns on a clean plate, using any condiments you like. You’re now ready to bite into the tastiest, juiciest burger ever. Originally published January 28, 2013.

Print RecipeBuy the Cristina Ferrare’s Big Bowl of Love cookbook

Want it? Click it.

    *What You Need To Know About What Type Of Cheese To Use

    • What kind of cheese goes on a burger is quite the personal matter. We understand that. You needn’t feel compelled to use Cheddar just because this recipe calls for it. Any cheese that turns melty, stringy, or gooey when heated will do just swell. Although actually, you needn’t use any cheese at all, seeing as a bare burger can be a thing of beauty, too. Hey, maybe that’s how the little ditty about how the cheese stands alone came to be? Someone scraped it off their cheeseburger and then felt sorry for it!

    Recipe Testers' Reviews

    This is a good cheeseburger. A very good cheeseburger. I like how simple it is. Grind a chuck roast, form it into patties, and grill it. I grilled these burgers in a skillet over medium–high heat using the suggested timing and I got a medium–well burger. I like mine a bit pinker, so I flipped each minute. Absolutely perfect.

    Even though this set off the smoke alarm in my house, the result was a delicious, juicy hamburger. This is similar to the way I do steaks indoors (which also sets off the smoke alarm!), and it works equally well with hamburgers. My cast-iron pan was extremely hot after 3 minutes on high, so I think next time I’ll turn down the heat a little after putting the hamburgers in the pan.

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