Want to know how to make smash burger? You’ve come to the right place!!!

What’s the big deal about the smash burger anyway? How is it different than other burgers? And how do you make them if you don’t have a griddle?

All burgers, if cooked right, are delicious, but what sets the Smash Burger apart is that they are cooked on a griddle and benefit from cooking in their own fat, while also getting nice caramelization and browning of the ground beef by being cooked on a griddle.
Quite frankly, the Smash burger is the delicious burger you get at the greasy spoon diner, finished with melted American cheese and secret sauce that Culminates in a juicy AF burger. I love that I can turn my grill into a griddle by simply flipping over my GRILLGRATES and channeling my inner short order waffle house cook! lol!

How do you cook a Smash Burger without a Griddle?

You don’t need to own a Blackstone grill to make a Smashburger. All you need are GRILLGRATES flipped to the flat side. If you don’t have GRILLGRATES then you can use a cast iron pan but if you are a serious griller then it is about time you invested in a pair of GrillGrates anyway. They will give you a more even cook, reduce flare ups, epic char marks (all the steak competitors use them!) and give you the ability to turn your grill into a griddle without having to buy another grill!

How do you make a smash burger?

The smash burger is a bit different from a traditional burger in that you don’t want to form a patty. Instead, you take a handful of the ground chuck and literally smash it onto the griddle or cast iron skillet. The beauty of the smash burger is that you get beautiful crispy edges of the browned burger meat that is cooked in its own burger fat.
how to make smash burger

First sauté your onions in butter on the flat side of your grill grates which turn your grill into a griddle.



how to make smash burger

How to make smash burger: instead of forming a full patty, grab the ground beef into a loose ball and then you will put it on the griddle and smash it with your spatula.

So how do you cook a smash burger?

Well, the best burgers always have the added bonus of smoke flavor from the grill. Take it a step further and cook them on a griddle to get that diner flavor and you have a burger that is out of this world with flavor.
To get the griddle experience on the grill you have a few options. If you have GRILLGRATES, you can flip them over and use the griddle side. If you don’t have grill grates, use a cast iron skillet for cooking your burgers.
how to cook smash burger

How to cook smash burger: Make a loose patty that will get smashed onto the griddle side of the GrillGrates.

My favorite way to finish a smash burger is with a generous helping of secret sauce, pickles and griddled onions (which are also cooked on the griddle or cast iron skillet).
how to make smash burger

How to make smash burger: I prefer American Cheese for it’s serious melt factor.

If you make this burger recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram or facebook @grillgirlrobyn! This recipe was originally featured in my newly launched magazine, GRILL GIRL magazine. Look for the magazine at your local grocery store or Walmart or sign up to notified of the next edition (sign up form below). Thank you for your support!!!


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Smash burger

The Smash Burger

  • Author: Robyn (GrillGirl)
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 8 burgers 1x


The Smash burger, is a diner style burger made on a griddle or a cast iron pan that is juicy with crispy edges paired with grilled onions and secret sauce – its the ultimate burger recipe to have in your burger repertoire!



For the Burgers

  • 9” cast iron skillet or grill grates flipped to the flat side
  • 2 lbs ground chuck roast (80% lean, 20% fat)
  • ½ stick butter, divided in half
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. kosher sea salt, divided
  • 1/2 Tbsp. coarsely ground pepper, divided

For the Secret Sauce

  • ½ cup mayo
  • 2 tbsp. ketchup
  • 1 tbsp. mustard
  • 1 tbsp. pickle relish (either sweet or dill is okay)
  • 1 dash onion powder
  • 1 dash smoked paprika


  1. Mix secret sauce ingredients and store in the refrigerator until ready to use. 
  2. Very gently, form the ground beef into rough balls — just enough to give them shape without compressing the beef. (These burgers will be flattened straight on the grill to create crispy edges from cooking).
  3. Heat your grill to 400 degrees on medium-high direct heat. 
  4. Place a large cast iron skillet on the grill or, use the flat, griddle side of grill grates. Give your surface a few minutes to get nice and hot. 
  5. Add butter to the skillet and let it melt. Add onions and let them cook until translucent. Remove the onions from the skillet and set aside. 
  6. Add more butter. Working in batches, place burgers on the skillet and flatten with a metal spatula to ½-inch thick. Sprinkle the burgers with salt and pepper.
  7. Flip the burgers when the edges begin to form a nice, crispy crust. 
  8. Add cheese and continue to cook. Remove the burgers once both sides have achieved those crispy griddled edges. 
  9. To assemble burgers, slather the bun in secret sauce. Next, add a patty and top with grilled onions. Optionally, add tomato and pickles. 


I’ve used affiliate links in this post. I only recommend products I use myself!

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Burgers, Smash Burger
  • Method: Grill
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: how to make smash burger

Want more grilled beef recipes? Check out these posts!