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How to Smoke Burgers

Making smoked burgers is the perfect alternative for your summer grilling! This recipe walks you through everything you need to know to make the best, moist and juicy, smoked hamburgers.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword how to smoke burgers, smoked burgers, smoked hamburgers
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 552kcal

Equipment

  • burger press
  • smoker
  • metal spatula

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds ground beef or ground pork, ground chicken, ground turkey or ground lamb
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • 8 Burger Buns

Toppings

  • Lettuce optional
  • Sliced red onion optional
  • Sliced tomatoes optional
  • Sliced Cheese optional
  • Pickle chips optional
  • Ketchup optional
  • Mustard optional

For Smoking

  • Water
  • Wood chunks or chips, pre-soaked, or pellets (whichever your smoker uses)

Instructions

  • Get out and measure all of your ingredients.
    Overhead photo of all the ingredients needed to make smoked burgers.
  • To make the burger patties, take a soft ball sized section of meat and gently shape it into a ball.
    Ground beef shaped into a ball to make burger patties.
  • Using a burger press or your hands, shape the burger and place on a plate.
    Burgers shaped into patties on a plate.
  • Once all the burgers have been shaped, season with salt and pepper and both sides.
  • Cook the burgers in the smoker at 225 degrees Fahrenheit for 60-90 minutes
    Burgers are placed on the grill to cook.
  • Depending on what doneness you prefer, see chart in notes but use your thermometer to check for doneness.
    Close up of burgers on the smoker.
  • Once the burgers have reached temperature, flip the burger to sear the other side quickly (only leave on for a minute or two before removing and add cheese after you flip, if desired).
    Burgers slipped to sear in the juices on the other side.
  • Remove hamburgers to a serving plate and serve with all your favorite toppings!
    Cooked burger patties on a plate.
  • Serve them up!
    Smoked burger served up on a plate.
  • Enjoy!
    Smoked burger on a plate with a bite missing.

Notes

**Nutrition doesn't include toppings you may add.
Add very little to your hamburgers. Even too much salt can dry out smoked hamburgers.
Avoid overmixing the ground beef or you may end up with dense burgers. Make them a half-inch thick and wider than your chosen buns to accommodate for shrinkage.
Remember to leave a thumb-sized imprint on the top of the patties before you throw them on the smoker. This will prevent them from puffing up into a meatball.
Always check your smoking hamburgers after cooking for 60 minutes. Add more wood chips or pellets and water if needed.
Use a meat thermometer to check the doneness of your burgers. You won’t be able to use visual clues to check because smoking causes a chemical reaction in your meat making it turn pink. This may be misleading if you're judging doneness by color (135 degrees F for medium-rare).
When possible, avoid leaner cuts of ground meat, you need a reasonable amount of fat to keep your burgers moist while smoked, at least 15 % if not 20%. If you use leaner meats you may end up with a delicious, but slightly dryer burger.
Sear the upward-facing side of the burger before removing it from your smoker.  You can do this when the internal temperature of the burger is about 5 degrees from being ready. After flipping you can add your cheese.

Nutrition

Calories: 552kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 36g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 15g | Trans Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 121mg | Sodium: 329mg | Potassium: 514mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 1IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 105mg | Iron: 5mg