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Hamburger question

Of all things to have a problem with cooking, it's hamburgers for me.  When I cook hamburgers, I usually make the patties about 6 to 7 ounces.  The ground beef is 80/20.  I cook direct and set the temp around 450.  I fill the egg to the top of the fire ring with lump before starting. 

If I'm cooking just a couple of burgers, this works great for me.  But last night, I had my Large BGE grate covered with  10 hamburgers.  I utterly lost control of the temp and they came out way overcooked.  There were a lot of flames and all of my lump was ignited and burning hot.  When I was done, the temperature was around 600 using the dome thermometer.

Factors contributing to this, I think:  I had the lid open a lot and for a long time, trying to move around and flip that many burgers which compromised my intended air flow.  Also, that many burgers created a lot of grease that fueled the fire to burn hotter. 

When cooking burgers, I leave the lump on for a little while after I eat to facilitate burning off the grease.  It's not a burnout but 30 or so additional minutes of 450.  So I do not believe I had a grease buildup. All of the grease was from the burgers I was cooking.

It's funny, I have no problems at all with low and slow.  I never thought that grilling would be the problem I'd have.

I am completely open to trying a different method or whatever suggestions you can offer.  I had some family over and it is embarrassing to serve overcooked burgers.  I would appreciate any help that you can offer. 

Comments

  • CornholioCornholio Posts: 793
    Do you have the bottom vent open or closed when the lid is up? I do smash burgers on mine just fine with a hot fire but the bottom vent is closed if I have the lid open. That goes for open lid grilling in general. 
  • jtyriejtyrie Posts: 6
    Cornholio said:
    Do you have the bottom vent open or closed when the lid is up? I do smash burgers on mine just fine with a hot fire but the bottom vent is closed if I have the lid open. That goes for open lid grilling in general. 
    I leave the bottom vent open and control the temp from the top.  That makes sense to restrict the airflow when I am opening the lid a lot.  Thank You!
  • CornholioCornholio Posts: 793
    edited May 18
    jtyrie said:
    Cornholio said:
    Do you have the bottom vent open or closed when the lid is up? I do smash burgers on mine just fine with a hot fire but the bottom vent is closed if I have the lid open. That goes for open lid grilling in general. 
    I leave the bottom vent open and control the temp from the top.  That makes sense to restrict the airflow when I am opening the lid a lot.  Thank You!
    Ah, there’s your issue. Grilling took me a bit to get used to on the egg. If you close the lid then open the vents however much for airflow but with the lid open close that bottom vent to avoid a raging fire.

    Just always be aware of flashbacks, you don’t want to have a closed vent on bottom with the lid closed or vice versa. When you open that lid up you’ll get a free arm hair removal. Burp the egg when running high temps since the oxygen starved fire will be looking for air as soon as you open her up. 
  • Photo EggPhoto Egg Posts: 10,151
    Just to add a bit. 10 burgers on at once would be similar to my 5 larger burgers at once on my Small BGE. I like to go raised to felt like. This makes flipping so much easier. I start out with some closed at about 350-400.
    When they start dripping fat and smoking a lot I open the dome and close the lower vent. I then finish cooking with the dome open. I only briefly close to stomp out flames when needed. This keeps the burnt fat dripping taste to a minimum. But tending 10 on a Large Egg would not be something I would want to do.lol



    Thank you,
    Darian

    Galveston Texas
  • jtyriejtyrie Posts: 6
    Photo Egg said:
    Just to add a bit. 10 burgers on at once would be similar to my 5 larger burgers at once on my Small BGE. I like to go raised to felt like. This makes flipping so much easier. I start out with some closed at about 350-400.
    When they start dripping fat and smoking a lot I open the dome and close the lower vent. I then finish cooking with the dome open. I only briefly close to stomp out flames when needed. This keeps the burnt fat dripping taste to a minimum. But tending 10 on a Large Egg would not be something I would want to do.lol



    Thank You!  I will certainly close my bottom vent from now on.  I'm going to get something to raise my grate as well.  I rarely cook that many burgers at once but maybe I'll start with fewer and rotate them in and out as the get finished.  
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 25,902
    if im doing lots of burgers i prefer the gasser or blackstone. the closed vent open dome is the only way on the egg, you close that dome and you get a bad fatty smoke on the burgers and an uncontrollable fire
  • FarmerTomFarmerTom Posts: 678
    I would add one other suggestion.  I cook burgers on my XL.  In addition to the vent control as others have mentioned, don’t fill it with charcoal.  You need only a little in the bottom and raise the grid to the felt line as was also suggested.  It doesn’t take long for a large charge of charcoal to become a raging inferno. 

    Tommy 

    Middle of Nowhere, Northern Kentucky
       1 M, 1 XL, a BlackStone,1 old Webber, a Border Collie, a German Shepherd and 3 of her pups, and 2 Yorkies

  • GeezerSteveGeezerSteve Posts: 27
    I found a simple way that's similar to how we sometimes cook steaks indoors. If the weather prevents me using the egg, steaks would go on an oven safe pan with high heat on the stove. Before adding steaks, use avocado oil (very high smoke temp.). Sear the outsides for about 1 1/2 minutes a side, then put the whole thing into a 450 deg. oven for 2 - 3 minutes a side for rare.

    The burger method on the egg has a full basket, open top and bottom vents. Preheat the CI grill (or other grill) to about 5 - 600 degrees. Open, place burgers on with the lid up for 2-3 minutes a side. Then close the lid and all vents. Let it cook for 5 minutes. The heat will drop slowly but remain well above 350 for the duration. When the time is up, carefully lift the lid, pull the burgers (or re-open vents and prep for the second batch).

    Everybody loves them when I do that.
  • dcdecareydcdecarey Posts: 2
    If you’re open to it, get grill grates. You can cook as hot as you want without flare ups. 
  • buzzvolbuzzvol Posts: 390
    FarmerTom said:
    I would add one other suggestion.  I cook burgers on my XL.  In addition to the vent control as others have mentioned, don’t fill it with charcoal.  You need only a little in the bottom and raise the grid to the felt line as was also suggested.  It doesn’t take long for a large charge of charcoal to become a raging inferno. 
    This^

    When grilling I keep charcoal at or below the top of the fire box.  Usually it is left over lump.
    Lawrenceville, GA
  • DawgtiredDawgtired Posts: 421
    I had the same issues. That’s been solved now and my burgers are great, or at least my family thinks so. I use a sous vide. I cook them at 132 for about an hour. Right before removing them I get a cast iron pan very hot to sear them off. Perfectly juicy with the top and bottom nicely caramalized.
  • stv8rstv8r Posts: 738
    edited May 23
    I've recently started making my burgers thinner and larger diameter (usually about 4-5 oz) and that allows them to cook evenly without balling up and also they fill out the hamburger bun without that extra bread around the edges.  Also I discovered a few teaspoons of A-1 mixed in with the ground beef really gives a nice flavor.  I use the 88% ground beef from Costco, and they stay very juicy with this method. One other note, I've switched out to the cast iron grates as well. 
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