How To Bake Hamburgers For When You Don't Have A Grill

With summertime right around the corner, it's time to start thinking about whipping up some mouthwatering hamburgers, but there's just one problem — you don't have a grill. This doesn't mean you now need to scurry about searching for friends hosting backyard barbecues all season long. Burgers are versatile, and there are plenty of ways to cook them at home without using charcoal, propane, or smoking up your kitchen using the stovetop.

When grilling isn't an option and you want tasty burgers for you and your crew to enjoy on a sunny afternoon, the oven is your best friend. Baking them in the oven is a great way to cook meat for the masses in a relatively short period because you have plenty of room for multiple burgers that will all finish cooking at the same time. You could also use the broiler setting in the oven; broiling your hamburgers will cook them faster and leave you with a nice crispy char on the outside. With either method, you'll end up with juicy, evenly cooked ground beef that will have your guests wondering where you hid the grill.

Cook perfect hamburgers in the oven

Once you shape the patties and season your meat just how you like, place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or foil. Create a slight depression into the top of the patties with your thumb to prevent them from forming a dome. Then, place them into an oven preheated to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Cook your patties for 15 to 20 minutes, depending on the size, and flip about halfway through to ensure they cook evenly on both sides, checking that the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees Fahrenheit. 

If you want burgers a little faster, set your top oven rack six inches from the broiler and preheat it. After forming your patties and placing them on a lined baking sheet, broil them for roughly 10 minutes, giving them a flip midway. Because the broiler method heats the meat fast, it's important to keep a close eye on them so they don't overcook and dry out. Done correctly, your hamburgers should have a welcome smokey flavor and a crusty outside, almost as if they were grilled.

Tricks to elevate baked hamburgers

Something to be aware of when cooking hamburgers on any appliance is that they can dry out quickly if you aren't careful. One way to help your ground beef stay juicy is to marinate them before baking or broiling. A marinade can be composed of many different ingredients to flavor any type of meat, and it can be particularly helpful if you're starting with a whole chuck you plan to grind yourself

Many hamburger marinade recipes utilize Worcestershire sauce, beef broth, liquid smoke, and brown sugar. Marinading a hamburger will also help to brown the outside, especially if your marinade has some sugary components. Ground beef shouldn't sit in a marinade for too long because it can break down the fibers in the meat and create a burger mold that won't want to hold its shape. Just 30 minutes in a marinade is plenty of time for a hamburger patty.

If you want your burger to have a little more body, you could make a panade before forming the patties. A panade is a mixture of bread and milk with various seasonings that keep the meat moist as it cooks. It's the same method used to make meatballs. For any guests at your outdoor event who prefer their burgers well-done, this is a great way to ensure they get a tender, succulent ground round cooked just how they like it.