Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
Jun 9, 2007 05:53 AM

Grilling burgers-what's the proper meat ratio?

I'm planning on grilling burgers using a combination of ground chuck and brisket. What % of each should I use? Or, are their better meats I should be combining to keep it juicy, but flavorful?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I haven't tried it yet, bu Tyler Florence recommended 100% brisket on his show. He said it naturally has the perfect fat content and flavor for burgers.

    1. The general rule is to use chuck, since it has the correct fat/lean ratio (20%). Actually, you might get better ground beef for burgers from a market that is particular about its ground beef. Many pride themselves on the correct ratio of better cuts (like Costco).

      1. I think I saw Alton Brown go through an entire dissertation on this 2 nights ago...sheesh! He ground up his own meat, too. You might check to see what HIS ratio was a bit too much for me...but I do appreciate the fact that a burger should NOT be 100% lean beef, if there is such a thing.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Val

          I strongly recommend chopping or grinding our own,and trying to get a fat content of 15%-20%. You can use chuck, or a combo with round or sirloin. I personally like hand-chopping or very quick pulsing of slightly frozen meat in the food processor. These give the loose texture essential for a good burger.
          Perhaps I shouldn't pre-judge, as I've never tried it, but much as I LOVE brisket for smoking/bbq and long slow Jewish-style braising, it is such a stringy cut that I can't imagine it would be good for hamburger.

          1. re: janeer

            I usually use chuck but sometimes chuck and brisket. This keeps me in the 20% range of fat which is essential for a juicy buger. They both have similar fat to lean ratios. Oh and there is nothing like grinding your own meat. Try going from grinder to lightly forming the patty to the heat without any delay. The meat will be nice, loose and fanstatic. I personally like the texture of a grinder over a food processer for burgers but don't grind with too fine a plate or they will get dense.

        2. Half chuck for fat, half sirloin for flavor

          1 Reply
          1. re: whs

            Do you really thing sirloin is reliably more flavorful than chuck? I like Black Angus chuck 80/20, 1/3 lb. burgers.

            I hear good things about brisket from people who should know, but I've not tried it.