The Godfather Burger patty recipe is juicy, perfect for the grill or grill pan, and works with every topping combination we’ve ever tried! Ten years in the making, this is The Godfather’s first official post on Goodie Godmother (far from his first recipe), and our favorite beef burger patty!
Who doesn’t enjoy a good grilled beef burger? Okay…vegans wouldn’t want the beef patty, but that’s besides the point (vegetarians can try my amazing mushroom burger recipe here). I started grilling my own burgers soon after college, right when I started having some income of my own and decided it wasn’t worth dropping $10-15 at a pub when I can craft my own burgers and pick the sides and drink pairings. If I wanted to, I could have my burgers in my pajamas while watching the evening college football games because I’m an adult and I can make my own decisions…
My burgers were not blog-worthy at first, but we didn’t have a blog…there was some trial and error involved. I learned some valuable lessons, such as not picking the leanest ground beef for making patties…unless you like watching patties crumble through the grill. The ground beef shouldn’t be too fatty, either…then you’d watch them shrink too much when you grill them. I also found out that flipping your burger patties too soon or too late will result in having either unintended ground beef or a charred hockey puck.
Other lessons were the result of happy accidents. One day, we were out of eggs and ground cracker meal to add to the ground beef as a binder, and I had to find alternatives around the kitchen. It turns out the alternatives were better than my original ingredients…I found out that panko breading and mayonnaise are a fantastic binder for ground beef! The combination of both held the ground beef together while keeping the burger juicy.
I really like my charcoal grill, and prefer it for making The Godfather Burger. Folks who have gas or electric grills can still make a great backyard burger though. You may also prepare the burgers on griddles or cast iron pans…which is perfect if you’d like diner style burgers or are attempting to re-create burgers from your favorite fast-food restaurant. Just don’t expect grill marks on those patties.
This recipe took almost ten years to perfect, and I hope enjoy it as much as we do. You can top this burger however you like, add your favorite bun, and pair it with your favorite side and drink. For these photos, we topped the burgers with cheddar cheese, bacon, candied jalapenos, and crispy smoked paprika onion straws.
The Godfather Burger
- 1 lb 85/15 ground beef
- 1 tbsp mayonnaise
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp coarse ground black pepper
- 1/8 tsp paprika
- 1/4 cup panko crumbs
- In a bowl, place the ground beef and add the kosher salt, garlic powder, black pepper, paprika, and panko crumbs. Mix the ingredients by hand to ensure a uniform consistency.
- Add the mayonnaise, and continue to mix the ingredients by hand to keep a uniform consistency.
- Set up your grill while your ground beef mixture comes to room temperature. Grill temperature should be between 250 and 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Partition the ground beef mixture into four equal parts.
- For each part, shape the patty using the palm of your hand as a guide. Ideally, each patty should be about as wide as your palm, or wide enough that the bottom half of the burger bun can still support it.. Ensure the thickness for each patty is about level, with no major bumps or depressions.
- Add a dimple to the center of each burger patty. This helps keep the patties at a uniform thickness as they're grilled.
- Place the burgers on the grill, but off the center of the coals. If you have a gas grill, they should be off the center of the burners.
- Grill for five minutes, or when the patties can be lifted off with your spatula without resistance. As you flip, make sure the side that was furthest from the center of the heat source is now the closest.
- If desired, add your favorite cheese to the patties. Continue to grill for three additional minutes, or when the patties can be lifted off the grill with your spatula without resistance.
- Remove the patties and serve on your favorite bun, with your favorite toppings, side, and drink.