Learn how to make a Juicy Lucy burger on the griddle… This cheese stuffed burger might be your new favorite griddle burger recipe!
I’m on a never-ending quest to find the best griddle burgers to make on the flat top grill… and once I think that one burger recipe has won the top spot, then I try another contender.
So when someone suggested that I try making a Juicy Lucy on the griddle recently, I was more than happy to oblige!
What is a Juicy Lucy Burger?
A Juicy Lucy burger is simply a burger that is cooked with the cheese inside the meat instead of on top like a normal cheeseburger. So when you bite into the burger, the melted cheese comes pouring out, hence the name “Juicy Lucy”.
The Original Juicy Lucy
The original Juicy Lucy was created in a South Minnesota restaurant, but which one is up for debate.
Both Matt’s Bar and the 5-8 Club claim to be the original creators of the now famous burger with molten cheese in the middle. But Matt’s Bar might edge out the competition with “proof” to back up their claim. According to the landmark Minnesota restaurant, the Juicy Lucy burger was created when a customer asked for it… or more specifically, the customer requested “two burger patties with a slice of cheese in the middle”. Once the man bit into his burger, he was amazed at how juicy it was, and as legend has it, he made an exclamation somewhere along the lines of “that’s one juicy Lucy”.
Whichever Minnesota restaurant is the true creator of the famous cheese stuffed burger, no one knows. But the beauty of an authentic Juicy Lucy is in its simplicity… They’re served only with caramelized onions and maybe pickle… it depends on who you ask! But between the simple toppings and that famous gooey, cheesy center, you’ve got the recipe for one awesome burger!
Ingredients for the Juicy Lucy Burger
- 80/20 ground beef – You don’t want to use lean beef for this griddle burger, because the whole point is to have the cheese melt with the grease from the beef, creating an awesome juicy burger!
- American cheese
- salt and pepper – A more authentic Juicy Lucy burger only calls for salt and pepper, but I added some of my favorite burger seasoning to mine.
- hamburger bun
- caramelized onions
- dill pickles
How to Make a Cheese Stuffed Burger on the Griddle
If you can make a normal griddle burger, then you can make a Juicy Lucy. Here’s how to make one of the best griddle burgers that you’ll ever eat:
Step 1: Stuff ground beef patties with cheese.
There are two main steps in stuffing the perfect Juicy Lucy burger patty… pressing down your ground beef to create two thin patties and then properly sealing the two patties so the cheese doesn’t melt out the sides.
Start by dividing your ground beef into balls that are about 3 – 3.5 ounces each. You’ll need two beef balls for each Juicy Lucy burger that you make.
You can see from the photo above that I used my bacon press and two pieces of parchment paper (one on top of the burger ball and one on the bottom) to press down my patties evenly. The parchment paper keeps your raw beef from sticking to the press, and it also saves you some clean up.
After your two patties are pressed thin, add some sliced American cheese to the center of one patty. I used two pieces of American cheese in my Juicy Lucy burger, and I tore the cheese into smaller squares… Why? Because I thought that piling the torn cheese squares up in the center of the burger would do two things:
- It would make it easier to seal the burger because the cheese would not be as close to the edge… I didn’t want my cheese oozing out of the side of the burger while it was cooking on the griddle.
- It would give me more of a gooey cheesy center in my cooked Juicy Lucy because the cheese would be concentrated in a smaller area instead or more spread out.
This technique worked perfectly for my burgers, but feel free to experiment with the cheese placement and even the type of cheese that you use… that’s the fun of cooking!
To finish off your Juicy Lucy burger patties, you need to seal up the sides of the burger so that you don’t lose any of that cheesy goodness on your griddle top.
Stack the two burger patties on top of each other so that the cheese is in the center. Then, just use your fingers to pinch the sides together all around. Don’t skimp on this part… take your time and make sure that your burger is fully sealed.
Step 2: Cook some sliced onions.
Depending on who you ask, an authentic Juicy Lucy may or may not be served with caramelized onions… but we are huge onion fans, just check out this Oklahoma Onion Burger for proof, so we added them to our burgers.
Just slice some onions thin and cook them on the griddle top until they’re nice and caramelized. After your onions have been cooking for a few minutes, you can go ahead and start cooking your burgers on the griddle also.
Step 3: Cook the Juicy Lucy burger patties on the griddle.
Add your cheese stuffed burger patty to the griddle, then season the top with your favorite burger seasoning.
The Juicy Lucy is traditionally made with salt and pepper, but I added a bit of Pit Boss Bold Burger Rub to my beef patty… it’s a nice all purpose seasoning blend of salt, pepper, garlic, and natural butter flavor.
Once you put your beef on the griddle DON’T TOUCH IT… this is the same technique that I recommend for pretty much any griddle burger if you want a fantastic crust. Let it cook on the first side to develop a nice crust.
Then, when you flip it to the second side, be sure to get your spatula underneath all of that burger crust… if not, all of that flavor will be left behind on your griddle top instead of stuck to your burger. Once you flip the patty, you can go ahead and season the second side and cook until your desired doneness.
You also may want to add a bacon press on top of the patty just for a bit more contact with the griddle surface, but it’s not necessary… and you definitely don’t want to press down with the press or smash these burgers.
As your burger is cooking on the second side, you can go ahead and dab your hamburger bun in the leftover grease on the griddle and toast it up.
Step 4: Build your Juicy Lucy burger and enjoy!
When the burger patty is done cooking, remove it from the griddle and build your Juicy Lucy burger while it’s still warm.
I added yellow mustard and dill pickle chips to the bottom bun, then the cheese stuffed burger patty, and lastly the caramelized onions. And when I cut my beautiful griddle burger in half, this is what happened:
If that oozy cheese melt doesn’t scream Juicy Lucy burger, then I don’t know what does! And this burger was fantastic!
We also experimented with a few other cheeses and flavor combinations. Boursin cheese stuffed burger with crispy fried onions and jalapenos was awesome also! And next time I think we’re going to add a little hot pepper jelly to the Boursin stuffed burger.
Feel free to add your own crazy flavor mix-ups and then come back here and leave a comment letting me know how it turned out!
Other Griddle Burgers to Make on the Flat Top Grill
Want some other ideas for burgers on the griddle? Check out these awesome burger recipes, all made on the Camp Chef, Blackstone, or Pit Boss griddles… and YES, all of these burgers are as delicious as they look:
Juicy Lucy Cheese Stuffed Burgers on the Griddle
- about 20 ounces 80/20 ground beef you will need 2 burger balls that are each 3 – 3.5 oz for each burger
- 6 slices American cheese
- sliced onions
- salt and pepper – or your favorite burger seasoning
- 3 hamburger buns
- your favorite burger toppings
- Make the burger patties by rolling ground beef into balls that are about 3 – 3.5 oz each, or a bit larger than the size of a golf ball.
- Press each burger ball down until you have an even, thin patty. The patty should be slightly thicker than a smash burger patty.
- Tear each slice of American cheese into about 4 squares. Pile the torn squares of 2 slices of cheese in the middle of one burger patty. Leave about 1/2" from the edge of the cheese to the edge of the beef patty. Place a second burger patty on top so that the cheese is in the middle of the two patties.
- Use your fingers to seal the burger patty together on all sides. Be sure that the patty is completely sealed so the cheese doesn't ooze out when cooking.
- Start cooking sliced onions on the heated griddle.
- When the onions are almost done cooking, add the cheese stuffed burger patty to the griddle. Season the top of the patty with salt and pepper or your favorite burger seasoning. Allow it to cook on the first side without touching it.
- When the burger is about 3/4 cooked through, flip it to the second side. Season the other side (now top side) of the burger. Continue to cook the burger until done.
- When burger is almost done cooking, dab the cut side of your hamburger buns in the leftover grease on the griddle. Then toast them on the griddle.
- When onions and burgers are done cooking, build your Juicy Lucy cheese stuffed burgers and serve warm with your favorite burger toppings.