How to Pan-Fry a Burger

Pan frying a burger is a quick and easy way to make a meal when the weather does not permit outdoor grilling. When you are pan frying a burger, you want to use thin patties. Each burger should be approximately ¼ inch thick. Bigger burgers are more appropriate for cooking on the grill.

Step 1

Defrost ground beef in the refrigerator overnight before frying. This decreases cooking time and prevents oil splatter. Form ground beef into patties prior to frying.

Step 2

Choose a heart-healthy oil for frying. According to "Whole Living" magazine, the best oils for high heat cooking are canola oil and light olive oil. These oils are high in monounsaturated fats, which are healthy fats. Partially hydrogenated oil and blended vegetable oils are high in saturated and trans fats, which are unhealthy fats. You can also avoid oil completely by coating the skillet with cooking spray.

Step 3

Pour your oil into the skillet. Heat the oil to approximately 350 degrees F over medium heat.

Step 4

Place your burger gently into the pan. Cook each side 3 to 5 minutes until the pattie is well-browned to reach medium doneness. Burgers larger than 1/4 inch thick may take additional time to cook. You may need to decrease or increase cooking times depending on how well done you desire your burger. Flip the burger halfway through cooking with a spatula.

Step 5

Insert a meat thermometer into your burger to check for doneness. Your burger should have an internal temperature of 160 degrees F before you remove it from the pan, according to the USDA.

Step 6

Put the burger on a toasted bun. Dress with desired condiments and toppings. Options include lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, mayonnaise, mustard, ketchup, red onions or salad dressing.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 tsp. canola oil

  • Hamburger pattie

  • Non-stick skillet

  • Spatula


To make your burgers healthier, consider using ground turkey or chicken instead of beef.

You have the option of frying onions or bacon alongside the burgers while cooking and using them for toppings.

Before preparing the ground beef for frying, add seasonings to the mixture for more flavor. For instance, add salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder to your ground beef before separating it into patties.

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