Why You Need To Be Extra Careful When Flipping Stuffed Burgers

What's better than eating a thick, juicy burger? Biting into a stuffed burger with tasty fillings like mac and cheese or caramelized onions oozing out of the middle. While the drool-worthy end results are undoubtedly worth it, these amped-up dishes take a few extra steps to make and if you're not careful, your delicious fillings can end up all over the grill instead of in your mouth. So when it's time to flip, the right tool is essential. 

Make sure to use a nice, wide spatula that can hold your bigger-than-average burger, stuffing included. If you really want to get fancy here, try getting a hamburger turner, which is large, slightly curved, and meant to flip big patties. In fact, turners are designed specifically for flipping food at high heat, making them an ideal tool for stuffed burger making. Since stuffed versions are also thicker than normal, make sure to take extra cooking time into account before you whip out your spatula or turner.

Fillings can fall out the middle if you don't flip properly

As a rule of thumb, a stuffed burger will take about six minutes to cook on each side. But of course, the time really depends on what you stuffed it with and how well done you want your meat to be. Any meat-based fillings, like bacon, should be cooked ahead of time so they don't affect the grilling time of the burger. And the more fillings you have, the longer it will take to cook, but wait to flip until it's at least browned on one side. If you're aiming for a medium burger, about four minutes on each side should do it, while medium-rare will take about three. 

To stay on the safe side, however, cook it all the way until a food thermometer inserted into the middle reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. No matter how successfully you flip them, a stuffed burger is still prone to falling apart if it's not sealed correctly. Try using a fork to crimp the edges of the two patties, the way you would with puff pastry, and let them sit in the fridge for about half an hour to get firm before grilling. And when shaping, keep your patties as wide and thin as possible — they'll thicken up while they cook, which is ideal for a juicy result.