For some odd reason, I love making burgers in the fall. Something about the taste of a burger combined with the atmosphere of fall weather seems so right to me. Obviously, I was looking to make burgers on a fall day and came across this smoked burgers recipe.
Of course, you can make this during any time of the year. These can be perfect for a summer cookout as my wife and kids love it when I do this. After all, nothing beats a good smoked burgers on a hot summer day.
How to Make Smoked Burgers
Making smoked burgers isn’t difficult. All you have to do is prepare some beef patties and season them generously with salt and pepper. Then put them in your smoker along with some of your favorite food chips.
Before they are done, place some cheese on them and cook them for a little bit longer. Once done, put the patties onto some buttered and toasted buns. This will add a nice little crunch to the bite. Be sure to generously butter the buns as well. Don’t only butter one side, butter the entire bun.
You can’t forget about the toppings either. Once the burgers are done cooking, add some toppings such as onions, tomatoes, lettuce, and your favorite condiment(s) to add some extra flavor. Then enjoy!
If you wish to get the best results, be sure to check out the measurements of each ingredient for the recipe down below.
How Long Does It Take to Smoke Burgers at 225F?
If you are using a quarter-pound patty, it should take around 60-90 minutes until the burgers are done. An hour in the smoker should give you a rare smoked burger. The time it takes will vary depending on the thickness of the burger you are using.
For example, third-pound patties you have to smoke them between 300-320F for about 40 minutes and are finished when burger temp reaches 160F. Since we are using 2 pounds of ground beef for this recipe, smoking will take anywhere between 60-90 minutes and smoked at a temperature of 225F.
Want to try other smoked recipes? Check out this tender and juicy smoked chicken breast. How about trying other beef recipes such as smoked beef brisket which comes out super tender and delicious! Or check out my fan favorite smoked corned beef. Give my amazing smoked beef back ribs a try. They are incredible!
What Temp Are Smoked Burgers Done?
Once the internal temperature reaches anywhere between 150F-160F, the burgers are finished. Again, this can take about an hour of smoking until the food is finished or more if you don’t want a rare burger. At most, it will take 90 minutes until finished.
Since we are adding cheese to the patties, we are going to continue to smoke the patties for a little bit longer in order to get some nice and melted cheese. The internal temperature will still be between 150F-160F once the cheese is finished.
160F is considered by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) to be the safest temperature to eat cooked ground beef. While this is the safest temperature, you can still eat cooked ground beef at a lower temperature. To be safe, stick with 160F temp for hamburgers, at least for this recipe.
Do You Flip Burgers When Smoking?
You can but it’s not a requirement. If you want to sear both sides, then you will have to flip the patty. If you want to add cheese to the burgers, make sure to do this after you have flipped the burger at least once.
The reason behind this is that if you put the cheese on the patty and you haven’t flipped it yet, you are stuck with a choice. Either flip the patty onto the side with cheese or only sear one side. You don’t want this because now you’ve pretty much ruined the food. Put the cheese on after you have performed one flip.
Even if you choose to not sear both sides, the food will still turn out delicious. As you can see, in this recipe, you do not need to flip the patties, making it more convenient to prepare.
The reason why you don’t have to flip a burger when smoking is because when using a smoker, the heat will be spread out to the entire burger. So even if you don’t flip it, both sides will still be cooked evenly.
Can I Smoke a Frozen Burger?
It’s possible. However, it’s best to let them thaw out as this will make the burgers have a juicer and more powerful flavor in the end. Frozen patties require you to cook them longer as they are frozen (obviously).
This doesn’t mean that if you were to use frozen patties, they won’t taste good. They can still turn out great. However, in my experience, letting the patties thaw out allows more flavor to be soaked into the patties making this method my preferred way of making the burgers.
But since you are the one eating, it’s about your personal preference. Some people prefer to smoke the burghers frozen rather than thawing out.
My only recommendation is to first try this recipe with thawed out patties. Then, go back a second time and smoke them frozen. This will help you figure out which method you prefer.
What Type of Wood Is Best for Smoking Burgers?
This is a very tough question to answer because this also depends on your personal preference. Some of the most common types of wood used are Hickory, Oak, and Mesquite. Pecan is a great option if you like Hickory as it has a similar taste, but is milder.
Hickory adds in a bold, smoky bacon flavor to the meat which is great for a hamburger. If you like to have a little fruity taste to your bite, consider adding Apple. A sweet and subtle flavor pairs really well with all of the toppings in a hamburger.
Or, if you want, you can combine wood chips together for some extra flavor. Many people like to do a 50/50 combination of Hickory and Cherry. To make it easier on yourself, try sticking with only one type of wood if you are new to all of this. When you have more experience, then try using multiple types of wood.
In short, there really isn’t a “best” wood to use for smoking. When making food, you have to remember we all like different things. The only way you can find the closet thing to the “best” wood for smoking is by trial and error.
Each time you smoke some burgers, try a different kind of wood. Once you’ve figured out which one you like the most, use that one.
What Makes a Good Smoked Burger Recipe?
I always like to say that the quality of the ingredients is important, which it is. It’s difficult to make a good meal with bad ingredients. But for a burger, I think what makes it good is what toppings you choose to add to the burger.
There’s nothing wrong with cheese, but try to spice it up a bit. Instead of using standard yellow cheese, try using provolone. Maybe try some spicy cheese.
Same thing with the condiments. Instead of only adding ketchup, add some honey mustard or even hot sauce.
One part of a smoked hamburgers that seems to never get enough attention is the buns. So many people will just use buns right out of the bag and eat it plain. They didn’t add butter, toast the buns or anything for that matter.
The buns need to be toasted and buttered. This makes an already delicious burger even better. Put in some extra effort and add some flavor to the buns.
In short, experimenting with different combinations will allow you to experience flavors you’ve never tasted before. This is the best way to make the tastiest burger you’ve ever had.
Tip: When adding salt to the patties, be sure to not do this while you are still forming them. The salt will draw out moisture and make your burgers dry. Season the patties right before you place them into the smoker.
Delicious smoked hamburgers
- 2 lbs Ground Chuck (Ground Sirloin can be used)
- Cheddar, American, or Provolone Cheese
- Coarse Salt
- Ground Black Pepper
- 4 pieces Hamburger Buns
- 2 tbsp Butter (melted)
Place the ground beef into a large bowl. Make 4 meat patties with each being 4 inches in diameter and 1 inch thick. Season both sides of the patty with salt and pepper. Don't be stingy with the seasoning.
Arrange the burger in a nice and well-spaced manner onto a wire rack.
Preheat the smoker to 225F. Then throw in your favorite wood chips.
Smoke the burger for about 60-90 minutes. Smoke until they reach an internal temperature between 150F-160F.
When there are 10-15 minutes left of smoking, place some cheese on top of each patty. Continue to smoke with the cheese on top.
Brush some butter onto the buns and toast them on the grill for 1 minute. Cut side down.
Serve the burgers with some toppings. You can use bacon, tomatoes, sliced onions, lettuce, tomatoes, sliced pickles, ketchup, mustard, or mayo.
Another tip: Put the lettuce underneath the patty. This will prevent the buns from getting soggy.