Smoky Grilled Burgers
Burgers can soak in the smoke, too. These have the added smokiness of crispy smoked bacon in the mix—so they are doubly delicious.
- 4 slices smoked bacon
- 2 pounds ground beef
- 1 teaspoon salt or smoked salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 8 whole wheat hamburger buns
- Smoky barbecue sauce, ketchup, lettuce, pickles and other desired condiments
- 2 cups woodchips, soaked in water
- Spray bottle filled with water
- Smoker box or foil to make a pouch
- 1 instant read thermometer
- Chop the bacon and fry in a large sauté pan over medium heat until crisp. Drain on paper towels and discard the fat. In a large bowl, combine the beef with cooked bacon, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce and garlic powder. Stir gently to combine. Divide in eight even portions and form patties just a little larger than the width of the buns. Use your thumb to make a shallow indentation the middle in each patty to allow for expansion on the grill. Let come to room temperature.
- Prepare the grill for smoking (see Tips & Notes for instructions).
- When the grill is ready and the cool side of the grate is oiled, place the burgers on the grate and close the lid. Let the burgers smoke for about half an hour, less if your grill is very hot. Test the burgers with an instant read thermometer; it should reach 150⁰ F when patties are done.
- Serve on buns with your condiments of choice.
Tips & Notes
- For best smoking results, create hot and cool zones on the grill. The hot zone is where the smoke is created and the food may be seared. The cool zone is where the food is placed to allow the food to cook more slowly and absorb the smoky flavor. If your grill is too small to create both a hot and a cool zone, check your food for doneness earlier as it will cook faster over the high heat.
To prepare your grill for smoking:
- Heat the grill:
- Gas grills: Remove the grate, then turn the gas on high. If your grill has more than one burner, use a single burner on one side. Once the grill is hot, place the smoker box filled with soaked woodchips, or a foil pouch filled with the same, on the hot side of the grill. Replace the grate.
- Charcoal grills: remove the grate, pile the charcoal to one side and light it. Heat until it is hot and covered with white ash. Place the smoker box filled with soaked woodchips, or a foil pouch filled with the same, directly on the coals and replace the grate.
- Get the woodchips smoking: allow the woodchips to start smoking. Once you smell the smoke and see wisps of it, you are ready to smoke your food.
- Smoke your food: pour a couple tablespoons oil into a cup. Dip a clean paper towel into the oil, hold it with tongs and quickly oil the cool side of the grate (if there are no hot and cool zones on your grill, oil wherever you plan to place the food). Place the food on the oiled grate and quickly cover the grill to allow the food to cook and absorb the smoky flavor.
- Keep the flames in check: have a spray bottle of water ready to douse out any flare-ups.
- Heat the grill:
425 calories, 23 g. fat, 81 mg. cholesterol, 652 mg. sodium, 28 g. carbohydrate, 5 g. fiber, 28 g. protein