Cooking burgers from frozen is a great method when you just need to get a meal on the table. Frozen hamburger patties can be made into delicious burgers using an electric griddle, some good seasoning and your favorite toppings. No need to thaw frozen burger patties to make juicy, delicious cheeseburgers.
Tips and Tricks
What do you serve with burgers? These burgers are delicious on their own but they also go great with corn on the cob, french fries, chips, pickles or quick simple salads.
How do you reheat leftovers? To reheat burgers, microwave until warmed through or cook on low on the stove top or electric griddle until warmed through. Make sure you heat the burgers with the cheese side up.
Can you cook frozen burgers without defrosting/thawing them? For this method described here, you do NOT need to thaw or defrost the burgers. The instructions are for cooking burgers from frozen. If you thaw the burgers first, your cook time will be shorter.
- Unsalted butter - Use any fat to toast the buns
- Onion roll buns - Onion rolls have a lot of extra flavor, but any bun or bread you want to work is great
- Frozen burgers - We use Bubba burgers but any frozen burger will work, but cooking time may vary
- Cheddar cheese - Sliced cheddar cheese so it melts well, any cheese will work
- Worcestershire sauce - For flavor, preferable Lea and Perrins brand (affiliate link)
- Garlic salt
- Onion powder
- Ground pepper
- Pickles - Optional but cuts through the richness of the burger and cheese
- Cooked bacon - Optional
See recipe card for specific quantities.
What’s the best cheese to put on burgers? The best cheese to put on your burger is whatever is in the house. However, I like a good melting cheese with some flavor.
I recommend a sharp cheddar slice but also havarti, American cheese or blue cheese. I’d recommend staying away from harder aged cheeses since they don’t melt well.
What are the best toppings for burgers? The best burger toppings are whatever you have in the house. I recommend something that will cut through the richness of the burgers like pickles, onions or lettuce. Tomatoes when in season are wonderful too.
As far as condiments, ketchup, mustard, blue cheese, BBQ sauce, ranch, honey mustard, mayo or sriracha mayo are all great options. Mix and match what’s in your fridge to make a unique burger!
If you’re looking for an upgrade, bacon, onion rings, avocado, sautéed mushrooms will all make your burger even better.
I will recommend that you don’t add too many toppings to your burger since sometimes they can slide around and be difficult to eat. Pick a few things and that way you can actually taste them all.
What are the best buns to use for a burger? This comes down to personal preference. I recommend a hearty bun that is lightly toasted to provide some structural integrity. Onion buns are delicious for something a little more fancy, potato buns or brioche buns are also a classic. Even two slices of bread will work great if that’s what you have.
Do you have to use Worcestershire sauce? This flavorful sauce is where you get a lot of flavor. If you don’t like the flavor or you’ve run out, Food52 has a list of substitutions which might help you out. You can leave it out of the recipe, but the burgers won’t have as much depth of flavor.
What’s the best frozen burger to use? This recipe was tested using the third of a pound Bubba burgers you can find in the freezer section. You could also use another brand or freeze your own burgers but cooking time may vary depending on the size of your burgers.
How do you make burgers from frozen? Preheat the electric griddle to 350 F. Melt the butter and spread across the griddle. When the butter is foaming, toast buns by placing them cut side down for about 30 seconds. Remove from the griddle and set aside, ready to assemble your burgers.
Place burgers down on the griddle and cook for three to four minutes until browning starts to occur and the edges have begun to defrost. Flip and season well with garlic salt, onion powder and black pepper with about two teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce on each burger. After another three to four minutes, flip the burgers and season with the remaining seasoning and Worcestershire sauce.
The burgers should be browned on both sides and shrink a little in size. Cook until 150 F (about five more minutes) and use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. Turn off the heat and add a slice to the cheese to melt from the residual heat. Prepare your buns with sauce, pickles, bacon and any other toppings. Add burgers and top bun.
How often do you flip burgers while cooking them? It is a common misconception that you should only flip burgers and steak once. Flip your burgers about every two minutes and continue to do that to get an even cook as well as a good crust. This goes for the electric griddle method, stove top method or grill method.
When do you put on the cheese? Put on the cheese as your burger reaches your desired doneness. Turn off the heat and allow the residual heat to melt the cheese on the burger.
Can you cook frozen burgers on the grill? Yes, you can cook frozen burgers on the grill. However, you may not get the same crust that you do from an electric griddle or pan on the stove. Cook frozen burgers on medium heat and flip every couple of minutes using visual cues and or a meat thermometer to tell when it is done cooking. Turn off the heat and allow the cheese to melt.
Can you cook frozen burgers on the stove top? Yes, you can cook burgers from frozen on the stove top. Preheat a stainless steel or cast iron skillet over medium and then follow the instructions listed below.
The cook time towards the end might be a little different and I recommend using visual cues and a meat thermometer to be sure the burger is done cooking. Turn off the heat and allow the cheese to melt.
Hint: Cooking your frozen burgers on an electric griddle or on a pan on the stove will help you develop a more flavorful crust since the burger cooks in the seasonings and Worcestershire sauce.
What other burgers can you use? You can use turkey burgers and use the same method but cook them until well done at 165 F. If you do this method with fresh burgers, they will cook faster so be prepared for that.
There are many different types of burgers out there so let this recipe work as inspiration. If you’re looking to change it up some great ways to do that are:
- Change up the cheese: use havarti, blue cheese, goat cheese, young gouda or American cheese
- Change up the buns: use potato, brioche, or even just regular bread
- Change up the toppings: add a variety of veggies like lettuce, tomato or onion
Change up the sauces: spicy sriracha mayo is delicious, so is BBQ sauce or honey mustard
What equipment do you use to cook frozen burgers? My favorite thing to use to cook frozen burgers is an electric griddle (affiliate link). This allows me to make four burgers at once easily without crowding the pan. This griddle can easily hold 10 burgers, making it great for a crowd of people, big family or game night. Electric griddles are non-stick, making them easy to clean. They also have temperature control knobs, so you know the temperature you’re pre-heating to.
An electric griddle is useful in cooking pancakes, eggs, french toast and a lot of things that you need a larger surface for. Since it’s electric, it is easier to move around in your kitchen. It is also fairly light compared to a cast iron skillet for a range stove or grill. Mine can’t go through the dishwasher, but I find it easy enough to clean in the sink.
How do you know when burgers are done cooking? The best way to know that the burgers are done cooking is by checking the internal temperature with a meat thermometer (affiliate link) like the Thermapen One. The internal temperature of a medium well burger is 150 F, or slightly pink in the center. If you like your burgers more pink, then cook them until your desired temperature.
Cooking burgers on an electric griddle in Worcestershire sauce will result in great browning and thus great flavor for your burger while keeping it juicy.
Cooking Burgers from Frozen
- 2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 onion roll buns
- 4 frozen burgers ⅓ pound each
- 4 slices of cheddar cheese
- ¼ cup of Worcestershire sauce divided
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt divided
- 1 teaspoon onion powder divided
- 1 teaspoon ground pepper divided
- Pickles optional
- 8 slices of cooked bacon optional
- Your favorite condiments to taste
- Preheat the electric griddle to 350 F.
- Melt butter and spread across the griddle. While the butter is foaming, toast buns by placing them cut side down for about 30 seconds. If they aren’t toasted to your liking, go for another 30 seconds. Remove from the griddle and set aside, ready to assemble your burgers.
- Place burgers down on the griddle and cook for 3-4 minutes until browning occurs and the edges have begun to defrost.
- Flip and season well with garlic salt, onion powder and black pepper (about ⅛ teaspoon of each seasoning on one side of each burger) with about 2 teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce on each burger.
- After another 3-4 minutes, flip the burgers and seasoning with the remaining seasoning and Worcestershire sauce.
- The burgers should be browned on both sides and shrink a little in size. Cook until 150 F (about another 5 minutes) and use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature (for medium well or slight pink in the middle) or however you want your burgers. Turn off the heat and add a slice to the cheese to melt from the residual heat.
- Prepare your buns with sauce, pickles, bacon and any other toppings. Add burgers and top bun.
- All times are approximate as all appliances are slightly different. Use visual cues and meat thermometers to determine if the burgers are done cooking.
- Burgers should be well browned, slightly shrunk and juicy when finished cooking.
- Add your favorite toppings, sauce, cheese or buns.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 150 °F (66 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove