It’s hard to find a food more associated with the U.S. than the classic cheeseburger. However, culinary minds are prone to revamping this delicious dish in numerous creative ways. In the Twin Cities, the cheeseburger was ostensibly turned inside out with the creation of the Juicy Lucy. Using American cooking techniques, several Minnesota restaurants claim to be home to the invention of this cheese-filled delight. According to Chow, Matt’s and the 5-8 Club have long disputed original ownership of the idea that has now become a regional staple. Though making a perfect Juicy Lucy takes a bit of grilling finesse, this awesome take on the cheeseburger can easily be recreated at home.
Juicy Lucy recipe
Serious Eats notes that constructing a Juicy Lucy can be tricky. You’ll want to make sure you have cheese firmly sealed in the patty, or it will leak out and burn on the grill. In general, a Juicy Lucy has to be fully cooked through as well, because a rare burger will leave red streaks on the cheese. Here is a basic Juicy Lucy recipe courtesy of Chow:
- 4 slices American cheese (about 3 ounces)
- 1 1/2 pounds ground chuck (15 to 20 percent fat content), chilled
- 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Vegetable oil, for oiling the grill
- 4 (4-inch) hamburger buns, split and toasted
- Sliced pickles, for serving
Cut each slice of cheese into four even squares. Stack the squares four high, for a total of four stacks.
In a mixing bowl, use your hands to combine the meat with salt, garlic powder, Worcestershire sauce and pepper. Make sure all the ingredients are mixed evenly.
Divide up the meat into eight patties on a flat work surface. Press the patties so they are an inch wider than the diameter of the hamburger buns. Place one of the stacks of cheese in the center of one patty, then place another on top. Form a tight seal between the two patties and then use your hands to round the edges and form one Juicy Lucy. Repeat to form a total of 4 Juicy Lucys. Keep refrigerated while you start the grill.
Heat an outdoor grill or grill pan to medium high heat, approximately 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Once heated, place the patties on the grilling surface and close the grill. Do not press on the patties. Allow the patties to grill on one side for about three to four minutes, and then flip them with a spatula. Repeat for the other side. Place the raw patties on a clean plate and allow to cool for a couple minutes. Place the patties in a bun, garnish to preference and serve immediately.