A homemade Smash Burger is quick and easy to make. These fly off the grill in minutes so it’s a great way to feed a crowd.

Smash burgers have the iconic flavor profile of classic Burgers, but that double burger patty with cheese melted in between is irresistible and you’ll love the special sauce.

Smash burger with cheese

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Watch the video tutorial and see how easy it is to make restaurant-style Smash Burgers for your next cookout.

Smash Burger Video

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What is a Smash Burger?

Smash burgers are formed into balls of ground beef then pressed or smashed with a burger press into a thin patty as soon as they hit the grill. This creates extra browning and flavor on the outside while maintaining the patty’s juiciness.

We love burgers, from classic Juicy Burgers to Cheeseburger Sliders. Making your own patty from ground beef tastes so much better than flash-frozen or fast-food patties. These go down easier and you feel better after eating a fresh homemade burger because you control the quality of ingredients.

If you are a fan of Smash Burgers this homemade version is a must-try!

Center of a smash burger showing the layers

Ingredients for Smash Burgers

  • Ground Beef – We use 1.5 lbs of 80/20 beef to make 4 double-patty burgers, but you can easily scale the recipe up to feed a crowd (use 3 lbs for 8 double-patty burgers).
  • Sauce – A simple combination of mayo and yellow mustard is what we use to grill and assemble the burgers.
  • Cheese – we love thick-sliced medium cheddar cheese for burgers, but you can use American-style cheese or your favorite sliced cheese.
Ingredient for smash burgers

Burger Toppings

  • BunsHomemade Buns are best. For storebought, brioche buns taste great and have that steakhouse burger look, but any burger bun will work
  • Lettuce – thinly slice your iceberg lettuce for a restaurant-style smash burger
  • Pickles – sliced dill pickle chips are the best
  • Tomatoes – Select meaty and large-sized tomatoes for burgers and cut them into rings
  • Red onion – thinly sliced into rings
Burger toppings

How to Make Smash Burgers

  1. Prepare Patties – Divide 1 1/2 lbs of ground beef into 8 equal portions (3 oz each), cover, and refrigerate until ready to cook.
  2. Make Sauce – Stir together 1/3 cup mayo and 1 tsp mustard and set aside.
  3. Prep Toppings – fully prep your toppings ahead to assemble the burgers right away while the patties are hot and juicy off the grill.
  4. Toast buns – lightly butter the cut side of your buns and toast on a griddle or skillet over medium heat until golden brown. Transfer to a rack.
  5. Cook patties – increase to medium-high heat. Depending on your surface area, place 2 to 4 cold pieces of meat onto the hot surface. Working quickly, cover each piece with a sheet of parchment paper and smash each into a thin patty. Remove parchment paper, season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder, add a dab of sauce, and flip. Sear for 2 minutes on the first side and about a minute on the second side.
  6. Add cheese – place a slice of cheese onto half of the patties and top with a second patty and remove from heat. Serve warm over toasted buns with toppings.
how to make smash burgers step by step

When to Flip the Burger: We cook the patty on the first side for about 2 minutes. Flip once the bottom is browned and caramelized.

Common Questions

What is the best beef for burgers?

For a tasty and juicy burger, use ground beef that is 80/20, or 80% lean and 20% fat.

Can I skip the burger sauce?

You can skip the sauce step when grilling the patties if you prefer then add your favorite burger sauces when assembling the burger.

Can I Make this on the stovetop?

Smash burgers can be cooked in a very large cast-iron skillet, or on a griddle (indoor or outdoor). We love using our Camp Chef cooktop to cook several patties at once.

Why does the beef need to be cold?

Unlike a good steak which we like to bring to room temperature first, burger patties should be well chilled before they go onto the grill. It helps the fat stay in the meat and will result in a juicier burger.

What is the Best Smash Burger Press?

A flat press works best to get the patties very thin. This is our favorite Smash Burger Tool, but you can also push over the top of a spatula with a meat mallet to smash burgers. Also, pre-cut parchment paper makes the job easy, but you can cut your own pieces.

Smash burger press, spatula and parchment paper

Make-Ahead

To Refrigerate: Since smash burgers are best using chilled ground beef, you can portion and refrigerate ahead. Roll the ground beef into balls then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 to 2 days.

Meatballs made ahead for smash burgers

How to Assemble a Smash Burger

According to my husband Vadim, who used to work at a restaurant, this is the proper way to assemble a burger.

  1. Spread sauce on the bottom bun.
  2. Add 3 slices of pickle
  3. Top with a mound of lettuce
  4. Add tomatoes and onions if using
  5. Top with meat patties and cover with the top bun.
Step by step assembling a smash burger.

How to Wrap a Burger

If you really want to replicate a restaurant copycat burger, try this easy burger wrapping technique. It’s easy and similar to wrapping a gift.

  1. Cut a piece of parchment paper into a 10-12″ square and fold in half into a triangle. Place parchment halfway over the burger.
  2. Flip burger upside and tuck in the sides.
  3. Tuck the bottom flap under the burger.
How to wrap a burger

The wrappers are so fun and help contain drips and messes. The kids seem to appreciate the wrappers. Maybe it’s because it feels like eating out.

smash burger wrapped in parchment paper

Serve With:

These are our favorite cookout recipes to make with burgers.

Smash Burger Recipe with Easy Sauce

5 from 210 votes
Author: Natasha Kravchuk
Smash burger recipe served on a bun
It’s easy to make restaurant-style Smash Burgers at home. These cook quickly and it’s one of the tastiest ways to prepare a burger. You’ll love the double patty with melted cheese in between, and the sauce is a must-try!
Prep Time: 18 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients 

Servings: 4 burgers

Smash Burger Patties:

  • 1 1/2 lbs ground beef, 80/20, divided into 8 portions (3oz each)
  • Salt, added to taste
  • Black Pepper, added to taste
  • garlic powder, optional, added to taste
  • 4 slices medium cheddar cheese, we love thick-sliced

Burger Sauce:

  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp yellow mustard

Toppings:

  • 4 burger buns, we used brioche buns
  • 2 cups iceberg lettuce, shredded
  • 1 large tomato, sliced
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced into thin rings
  • 2 Dill Pickles, cut into 12 slices

Instructions

Portion Beef Patties:

  • Divide beef into 8 even portions, about 3 oz each. Loosely Roll them into balls then cover and refrigerate while preparing remaining ingredients. The meat must be cold when it hits the grill.

Prep Toppings and Buns:

  • Remove wilted leaves from lettuce to keep it crunchy then finely shred lettuce. Slice tomatoes, onions, and pickles.
  • Butter and toast buns over medium heat until golden on the buttered side.

Cook the Patties:

  • Increase griddle to medium/high heat. Place 2-4 burger balls onto hot griddle. Working quickly, place parchment paper over the meat and firmly smash straight down into a thin patty.
  • Once patties are smashed, peel back and discard parchment papers and season patties with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Add 1/2 teaspoon of burger sauce. Cook 2 minutes on the first side or until seared and juices start to come to the surface.
  • Scrape under the burger with spatula facing down at a 45˚ angle to get under the caramelized part and flip. Cook another 1 minute. Top half of the patties with sliced cheese and cover cheese with the second patty. Repeat with remaining burgers and transfer them to a platter as they finish cooking.

Assemble Burgers:

  • Place sauce on bottom of bun. Top with 3 pickle slices, shredded lettuce, 2 tomato slices and thin sliced onion. Add double patty and top with bun.

Nutrition Per Serving

730kcal Calories26g Carbs42g Protein59g Fat22g Saturated Fat10g Polyunsaturated Fat21g Monounsaturated Fat2g Trans Fat158mg Cholesterol926mg Sodium720mg Potassium2g Fiber6g Sugar791IU Vitamin A7mg Vitamin C335mg Calcium5mg Iron
Nutrition Facts
Smash Burger Recipe with Easy Sauce
Amount per Serving
Calories
730
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
59
g
91
%
Saturated Fat
 
22
g
138
%
Trans Fat
 
2
g
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
10
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
21
g
Cholesterol
 
158
mg
53
%
Sodium
 
926
mg
40
%
Potassium
 
720
mg
21
%
Carbohydrates
 
26
g
9
%
Fiber
 
2
g
8
%
Sugar
 
6
g
7
%
Protein
 
42
g
84
%
Vitamin A
 
791
IU
16
%
Vitamin C
 
7
mg
8
%
Calcium
 
335
mg
34
%
Iron
 
5
mg
28
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: smash burger, smashburgers
Skill Level: Easy
Cost to Make: $$
Calories: 730
Natasha's Kitchen Cookbook

Natasha Kravchuk

Welcome to my kitchen! I am Natasha, the creator behind Natasha's Kitchen (established in 2009), and I share family-friendly, authentic recipes. I am a New York Times Best-Selling cookbook author and a trusted video personality in the culinary world. My husband, Vadim, and I run this blog together, ensuring every recipe we share is thoroughly tested and approved. Our mission is to provide you with delicious, reliable recipes you can count on. Thanks for stopping by! I am so happy you are here.

Read more posts by Natasha

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Recipe Rating




Comments

  • greg
    June 19, 2024

    got it! by the way what buns do you suggest??? but besides that it’s a great burger!!!!:}

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 20, 2024

      Hi Greg! See the section above under “burger toppings” for my note on burger bun suggestions.

      Reply

  • Jessica
    June 19, 2024

    Made these tonight and they were so so good and easy. Everyone in family loved!

    Reply

  • greg
    June 18, 2024

    dose it work with lamb???????????????????????????????????????????????????

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 19, 2024

      Hi Greg! I have not tried lamb but I’m sure it could work. Just keep in mind that if the meat is leaner, the burger will be drier.

      Reply

  • greg
    June 18, 2024

    I love a good smash burger with a good bun love the recipes!!! five stars!!:)

    Reply

  • Patti Bigelow
    June 16, 2024

    We tried these smash burgers the other night, and they were delicious! They were served as double or single patty, depending on preference. These truly were better than a restaurant version. We formed the patties ahead of time, using the bottom of a round plate to thin them out. They were easy to transport from work surface to pan using parchment paper for easy handling and placing. Our grill is on the blink, so I used a high-sided large pan to contain the splattering grease. This was the first time in decades I have used 80/20 ground meat. I always used 90 to 96% lean meat, and eaters said my burgers were hockey pucks. The increased fat value really contributed to a much juicier and more flavorful burger. This is now our go-to burger recipe hands down from now on. For eating, I found it easy to smash the burger down after assembly for neater ingestion. Thank you, Natasha!!

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      June 17, 2024

      You’re so welcome, Patti! These are fun to make and to eat! I’m so glad they were a hit! Thank you for your awesome review!

      Reply

  • Neal
    May 21, 2024

    Nicely done with both your chicken and smash burgers. I alter the smashing to BEFORE it goes on the grill to help maintain as much moisture as possible.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      May 21, 2024

      That’s a great idea, Neal! Thank you so much for sharing that with me.

      Reply

  • Krista Rasana
    April 12, 2024

    It looks delicious😋 I can’t wait to try this awesome receipe!

    Reply

  • Lila
    March 24, 2024

    These were a smash hit. Thanks Natasha !!! I will definitely be making again. Omitted the pickles as my family do not like them.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      March 24, 2024

      You’re welcome! Happy to hear that it was a huge hit!

      Reply

  • Mark Miller
    March 23, 2024

    We made these last nite for the first time, with sweet potato fries.
    So good everyone cleaned their plate.

    Reply

  • ADAM
    March 19, 2024

    can’t wait to try these! quick question: should i grease my cooking surface before adding the meat? i have read different things about how to get the best “crisp”…

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      March 19, 2024

      I do not, but you can if you’d like.

      Reply

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