This lamb burger was always a best seller on the food cart! I’m so excited to get to share this lamb burger recipe with everyone. If you’re looking for a way to introduce yourself or someone else to lamb, this is perfect. All the accompaniments highlight the flavor of the lamb. But with the familiar vehicle of the burger. This is one of those recipes that doesn’t need out-of-season ingredients. But is reminiscent of spring and summer at the same time.
How to Cook Lamb
If you’re new to lamb, it can feel a bit intimidating. I came up with a few things that will help you have delicious lamb burgers every single time.
Choosing Your Lamb Burger
It’s always important to have high-quality meat when you want to have a great tasting end product. But it’s even more important when it comes to lamb. If possible, go to your local butcher. If that’s not reasonable, at least go to the meat counter. Pick one that is free-range, grass-fed lamb. And have the source be as local as possible. This meat is already on the more expensive side, so pay a little bit more and make sure you have the quality.
How to Grill a Lamb Burger
The most important thing to know about lamb is that you do not want to overcook it. If you overcook lamb, instead of a juicy burger, you will have a dry disc. Especially if you are new to lamb, go redder. Ideally, lamb should be cooked to a medium-rare. But if you are cooking for someone who wants it well-done, do it medium-well. Leave at least a little pink. As soon as you cook that ground lamb to well-done it will have lost all the juices that make lamb so delectable.
Fat Content of Ground Lamb
The fat content of lamb is what makes it so juicy and tender. It’s important to know that ground lamb has a high fat content before you start cooking or grilling it. A good amount of this fat will get cooked out as you grill or fry it. Be cautious of this as it can be dangerous. Have a plan for dealing with it like a container to drain it into. Some fat in the pan is going to get you a great sear, but too much will make it greasy.
At one point, I almost didn’t include burgers on the food cart. Gluten free buns are notoriously dry. But I found a solution to it! When gluten free bread contains starches, it gets softer and more pliable when heated. This is why toasting gluten free bread creates the best texture. But I didn’t want to have buns that fell apart either as they do sometimes when heated in the microwave. The solution I found was the best buns ever from New Cascadia Traditional. But also adding my garlic aioli before toasting them on a grill. This added flavor and increased the structure of the buns while also making them soft. If you don’t have garlic aioli, you can use mayo or make it egg free and use olive oil. Each of these had its own advantages but I recommend using the aioli if you can.
As great as lamb is, sometimes we need to make adjustments for our friends, family, or ourselves. And I do have a version of this burger that is vegetarian! What I would do is take our falafel mix and form it into a patty shape and grill. If you are making both versions, be very cautious to not get the lamb juices all over the vegetarian version. Our falafel mix was garbanzo bean flour, baking powder, lemon juice, cumin, coriander, and fresh dill.
All the Fresh Herbs…
If you’ve been following along at all, you’ll know that fresh herbs are a *thing* around here. Do you need them or will it be fine without them? I do recommend using them. But if you don’t have access, you can leave them out of the burger. They do add to the flavor and fresh feeling of this burger. This burger in particular with the high content of fat can feel very heavy. And the herbs lighten it up on the palate. But if you want to make this without the herbs, you can. Fresh herbs are so easy to grow inside year round, in your garden, or get from the grocery store. When it comes to the herbs in the tzatziki, do not skimp on the fresh herbs. They bring brightness to the sauce.
Do You Really Need the Sauce?
Short answer: Yes. Without the sauce, it is pretty disjointed. The tzatziki sauce brings everything together. It brings sour, tart, and refreshing notes to it that enhance the flavor of this burger. It is what brings that Mediterranian flavor to the dish.
Let Me Know What You Think
If you make this, I’d love to know what you thought! Leave a comment here or on any social media. Find us on Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest.