There’s nothing like a delicious grilled burger. Cooking the perfect on the Pit Boss will differ slightly from a traditional gas or charcoal grill. I’ll share some of the tips I’ve learned from cooking on a Pit Boss pellet grill, that will help you grill up a perfect burger every time!
9 tips for Cooking Burgers On The Pit Boss Pellet Grill
Cooking a burger outside tastes so much better than cooking it inside. I’m not sure why that is, but it just does. And with the warmer weather finally here, it’s time to break out the grill and get cooking! Here are some tips to help you make the perfect burger on your Pit Boss Pellet Grill.
If this is your first time cooking with a Pit Boss pellet grill, here’s a quick summary of what it takes to grill that perfect burger. Keep reading as I’ll discuss each one in more detail below.
- Use the right type of meat
- Season the patties
- Making the right size patties
- Use the right pellets
- The Pellets don’t matter as much
- Preheat the grill and let it get hot
- Cook them on high
- Use a thermometer
- Flip the burgers once
- Resting the Meat
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Watch this video as I walk you through step by step on how to cook hamburgers on the Pit Boss pellet grill.
If you’re old school and prefer reading, then scroll down for my best tips for grilling burgers on the Pit Boss.
#1 Use the Right Type of Meat
Great tasting burgers start with the quality of the meat you choose. The most common and popular type of meat to use for burgers is ground beef. Two type of ground meat can be found at grocery stores; meat labeled “ground beef” and meat labeled “hamburger.”
The biggest difference in the two types of meat are the amount of fat added to it. The maximum fat content in ground beef is 30%, according to USDA standards.
You’ll want to choose a good quality of meat with fat content ranges from 10-20 percent. I’ve personally found that an 80/20 ratio is a good quality meat for grilling.
That said, if you’ve never purchased ground beef before, here’s a quick table to show you the different lean-to-fat ratios and what to expect when cooking burgers.
|85% – 15% Fat||Harder to cook and will be dry if overcooked.|
|80% – 20% Fat||Perfect ratio that makes for juicier and more flavorful burgers.|
|75% 0 25% Fat||A pinkish colored beef that has a tendency to give off several different flavors.|
#2 Don’t Forget to Season the Burgers
When it comes to seasoning food, less is more. The same goes for burgers. You don’t want to over-power the taste of the meat with too many spices. A good rule of thumb is to start with ¾ teaspoons per pound of meat.
I like to keep it simple by just using kosher and black pepper. If you want to get a little adventurous, try adding in some Worcestershire sauce, minced garlic, and minced onion.
Everyone’s taste buds are different, so feel free to experiment with the seasonings until you find a combination that you like. Just remember, start small and add more if needed.
I’ve found that seasoning the ground beef before forming the patties works best. If you’re cooking frozen hamburgers, you’ll want to cook one side of the burgers and season them once they are thawed out on the grill.
#3 Patty The Burgers Properly
When it comes to the size of the patty everyone differs. Some people prefer their patties small while others like them huge. Personally, I like my patties to be about 6 oz, which weigh between ¼ to ¼ pounds.
Of course, it’s important to take into consideration the size of the buns. You don’t want the patty to be too small, where it doesn’t cover the bun. Nor do you want it to be too big, where it’s difficult to take a bite.
Another thing to consider when forming the patties, is they will shrink during the cook. So, you’ll want to make them slightly larger than the desired size.
You can patty the meat by hand, but I prefer using a hamburger press. It works by filling it with the meat, then pressing down on the burgers. It forms the perfect shape burger, and prevents your hands from freezing when shaping the burgers.
If you decide to form the patties by hand, make sure you use wet hands to form them. The dampness in your hands will prevent the meat from sticking to your hands as you form the patties.
Regardless of whether you’re using gamey meat, cubed steak, ground beef, try to keep the patties the same size so they cook at the same rate.
#4 What Pellets Should You Use?
Since the burgers won’t be on the grill for more than 10-12 minutes (cook times will vary), use hickory or mesquite wood pellets. These burn hotter and will produce a rich flavor.
That said, if you don’t have access to those two flavors, you can grill them with whatever is in the hopper. Unless you’re smoking the burgers, they won’t be on the grill long enough to absorb too much of the smoke flavor.
#5 Let the Grill Warm Up
Preheat the Pit Boss pellet grill between 450 – 500°F, and let the grill get hot before putting the burgers on.
If you put the burgers on too soon, they will stick to the grates and tear when you try to flip them over. Not to mention, it’ll be harder to get those pretty grill marks that everyone loves.
It’s perfectly fine to leave the patties sitting on the counter while the grill preheats. If you don’t want to risk the chance of them getting to warm or bacteria build up, you can place them in the refrigerator until you’re ready to throw them on the grill.
#6 Cook The Burgers on High
Cook the burgers over high, indirect heat. The intense heat from a hot grill helps create a deeply brown crust that is the famous hallmark of a good grilled burger.
I recommend spraying the grill with Pam or a cooking spray to prevent them from sticking.
If you cook the burgers over low heat or too long, they will release their juices, dry out and burn.
#7 Use a thermometer
Unlike a gas grill, you can’t cook using a two zone method. So you’ll want to use a thermometer to monitor the internal temperature.
The FDA recommends cooking ground beef to an internal temperature of 160°F. That said, I realize that not everyone likes eating well done burgers. Below are the different doneness temperature for beef.
|Doneness Level||Farenheit||Celcius||Internal Meat|
|Bleu||110°||43°||Relatively unchanged, warm|
|Rare||120 – 130°||49 – 54°||Bright purple, warm|
|Medium Rare||130 – 135°||54 – 57°||Bright red, warm|
|Medium||135 – 145°||57 – 63°||Pink, juicy|
|Medium Well||145 – 155°||63 – 68°||Rich pink, slightly juicy|
|Well||155° and Up||68° and up||Chewy and brown|
I make it a point to remove my burgers from the grill 3-5° before my desired serve temperature. This is because they will continue cooking during the resting period.
The last minute or two before removing the burgers from the grill, I toss the buns on the grill. This makes the buns nice and warm and may even toast them a bit making the burgers even better.
#8 Don’t Flip More Than Once
Grill experts recommend searing the burger 2-3 minutes on one side, before flipping it to the opposite side. This keeps prevents the burger from falling apart and staying juicy.
Resist squishing the burgers down with the spatula, as that will release the juices from the burger. You’ll end up with a dry burger that will be hard to swallow.
#9 The Debate on Resting the Meat
According to The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling book, you don’t need to let the meat rest after grilling. Instead, the meat will rest while you’re fixing the toppings to your burger.
Of course, it’s a personal choice on whether or not to let the meat rest. In our house, we always let the burgers rest 5-10 minutes before eating. The resting period allows the burger to remain juicy and intact.
With Memorial Day around the corner, more people will be firing up their pellet grills. Hopefully, these tips have shown you how easy it is to grill burgers on a wood pellet grill.
Whether you’re cooking for one or a crowd, following these tips will result in juicy, delicious burgers that everyone will love. So what are you waiting for, fire up your grill and enjoy a great tasting burger on a cold one regardless of what day of the week it is!
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