I absolutely adore a good burger, especially during the summer months. Whether it’s a big, juicy cheeseburger, a crispy smash burger, sliders, or any other variation, I’m all for it. But let me tell you, this sweet and spicy bacon smash burger is something special. It has quickly become my favorite! And trust me, it pairs perfectly with delicious sides like Louisiana Voodoo Fries, simple Yukon Chips, or even Air Fryer Twice Baked Potatoes.
Why This Recipe Works:
Whataburger greatness. Inspired by the mouthwatering Whataburger Sweet & Spicy Bacon Burger, this recipe captures the essence of its deliciousness while offering an easy and indulgent twist.
Smash burger perfection. Unlike your regular thick and juicy burger, this sweet and spicy bacon burger is made as a “smash burger.” It boasts a crispy, caramelized exterior while remaining juicy on the inside.
Quick and convenient. No need to fuss over forming patties or waiting for the burger to cook to perfection. These burgers cook up rapidly, making them ideal for quick dinners or feeding a crowd.
The ultimate sweet and spicy sauce. After some experimentation, I’ve crafted the ideal sweet and spicy sauce for this burger. Combining barbecue sauce with hot pepper jelly or spicy pepper relish, it creates a heavenly blend of sweetness and zest with a subtle kick. Trust me, it will soon top your list of favorite sauces and elevate countless dishes.
Tips for Making a Smash Burger
Now, let’s talk about making this remarkable burger. It’s not your average burger, my friends. Smash burgers are thinner, boasting a crispy exterior and a juicy interior like those classic diner-style burgers. Here are a few tips to ensure success:
Keep your burger meat cold. The patties hold together better and retain juiciness when prepared with cold meat straight from the fridge.
Season appropriately. A sprinkle of salt and pepper is all you need to make these burgers shine.
Avoid overmixing. Roll your ground beef into small balls without flattening them or using the thumb indent trick. Ideally, use an ice cream scoop to prevent the meat from warming in your hands.
Utilize a cast iron skillet. This will give your burgers the perfect sear and crust.
Preheat your pan. Ensure it’s nice and hot by testing it with a few drops of water. If they sizzle, it’s ready.
Use parchment paper. Prevent your spatula from sticking to the burger by placing a piece of parchment paper between them during the smashing process.
Smash once and let it cook. Once you’ve smashed the burger down, avoid moving or flipping it until the bottom forms a crispy crust. This ensures maximum flavor and prevents dryness.
Prepare for smoke. Be prepared for some smoke while making these burgers. Open your windows, turn on your vent, and maybe grab an apron. Making delicious burgers can be a bit messy!
Tools You’ll Need
To create this delectable sweet and spicy bacon burger, you’ll only need a couple of tools:
- A cast iron skillet.
- A sturdy spatula or a burger press (crucial for pressing down the burger).
Here’s what you’ll need to assemble these mouthwatering burgers:
- High-quality ground beef (80/20 blend is ideal for juiciness).
- Sweet onion (although any variety will work).
- Good cheddar cheese and Monterey Jack cheese (deli cheese melts nicely).
- Thick-cut bacon for an extra crunchy texture.
- Sweet and spicy pepper sauce, combining barbecue sauce and red pepper jelly.
- Brioche buns, buttered and toasted on the inside for ultimate deliciousness.
How to Make These Sweet and Spicy Bacon Burgers
Don’t worry; these burgers are easy to whip up. Here’s how you do it:
Start by toasting the brioche buns. Butter the inside and cook them on a medium heat cast iron skillet or griddle for a few minutes until they’re beautifully toasted. Set them aside.
Prepare the sweet and spicy sauce. Combine equal parts barbecue sauce and red pepper jelly, mixing well. Set it aside.
Now, follow the burger ball preparation method explained earlier. Place the balls in a hot pan, smash them with a spatula, and let them cook undisturbed for a few minutes until juices appear on top.
Add the onions, flip the patties, and press them slightly. Immediately cover the burger with cheese. This method prevents sticking, caramelizes the onions, and saves time.
Let the burgers rest for a few minutes after cooking.
Assemble your sweet and spicy bacon burger. Place the burger on the bottom bun, top it with onions, bacon, and a generous drizzle of the sweet and spicy sauce. Finally, cover it with the top bun.
What Can I Serve with Sweet and Spicy Bacon Burgers?
The options are endless! Classics like barbecue sides work well, but here are a few more delicious ideas:
- Louisiana Voodoo Fries
- Zucchini Salad
- Potato Salad
- Carrot and Parsnip Baked Fries
- Kale Crunch Salad
- Strawberry Spinach Salad
If you give these Sweet & Spicy Bacon Smash Burgers a try, let me know what you think! Don’t forget to tag me with a pic @frontrangefed on Instagram; I’d love to see your masterpiece!