Jucy Lucy Burgers

First, let me assure you that I do know how to spell “juicy.”  Now that we have that out of the way, “Jucy Lucy” is the name given to burgers which are evidently famously served in Minneapolis taverns.  Never having visited the fair city of Minneapolis, I’m going to have to take this on faith.  Turns out Jucy Lucy burgers even have their own Wikipedia page!

Jucy Lucy burgers’ claim to fame is that they are basically an inside-out burger with the cheese on the inside of the hamburger rather than topping it.  I was intrigued by the Cook’s Country approach because the challenge was to get the cheese to melt without drying out the hamburger or having the cheese leak out before the burger was done.  Not one to shy away from a cooking challenge, not to mention being the beneficiary of someone else’s R&D, I was more than up to the task.

The secret to keeping the hamburger from drying out was to make a panade which is a mixture of bread and milk mashed into a paste, and the solution to keeping the cheese inside was to form a mini patty around the cheese, followed by larger patty around the mini patty.  This created a large double-sealed hamburger with the cheese safely tucked inside.  Well, that did the trick—the burgers were definitely juicy, and the cheese remained safely inside the burger.  Please note that you need to let the hamburgers rest (tented with foil) for 5 minutes after coming off the grill to prevent getting scalded by the very hot cheese in the middle.  Even after the resting period, I took my first bite very cautiously.

This was a very tasty, very juicy burger.  Having said that, it does require more work than a regular burger with the cheese on top.  I think it’s going to be a special, once-in-a-while type burger for me when I want to have something out of the ordinary for BBQ guests.  It was fun to make, tasty to eat, and I do recommend that you try it.  If you ever meet someone from Minnesota, you can impress them with your knowledge of Minneapolis cuisine!

One year ago:  4th of July Parfait

Two years ago:  Skewered Chicken with Asian Pineapple Sauce

Jucy Lucy Burgers

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  • 2 slices hearty white sandwich bread, torn into rough pieces
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/8 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. pepper
  • 1 1/2 lbs. 85 percent lean ground beef
  • 1 slice of deli American cheese (1/2-inch-thick), cut into quarters


Using potato masher, mash bread, milk, garlic powder, salt, and pepper in large bowl until smooth.  Add beef and gently knead until well combined.

Divide meat mixture into four equal portions.  Divide each of the four portions yet again in two with one half being slightly smaller.  Take the smaller half and mold it around one piece of the cheese being careful to seal the edges, forming a mini patty.

Now take the remaining larger half of ground beef and mold it around the mini patty, once again being careful to seal the edges.

Repeat with remaining ground beef to form three more patties for a total of four.  Transfer patties to plate and refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to 24 hours.

Grill burgers over medium fire until well browned and cooked through, 6 to 8 minutes per side.  Transfer to plate, tent with foil, and let rest 5 minutes before serving.  It is important to do this—if you bite into the burger right off the grill, the cheese will be too hot and could cause you to burn your mouth.

Source:   A Cook’s Country recipe

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