Guy Fieri shares his 4 easy tips to make the perfect burger for your next barbecue

Guy Fieri burger
Guy Fieri holds hamburgers in the kitchen during a welcome event for Guy Fieri’s Vegas Kitchen & Bar in Las Vegas. Ethan Miller/Getty Images for Caesars Entertainment
  • Guy Fieri has shared his top burger tips with Insider to help you with your next barbecue.
  • Fieri recommends using American cheese because it “melts really well.”
  • He also smashes his burger patties to “get all that delicious caramelization going.”
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Summer is in full swing and that can only mean one thing – it’s barbecue season!

And who better to call on for burger tips than the Mayor of Flavortown himself, Guy Fieri.

Fieri already spilled his secrets to Insider on how to make the ultimate grilled cheese sandwich, and the Food Network star was also happy to reveal how he makes the perfect burger.

“This may be a more complicated answer than you bargained for because it’s not just about a burger recipe,” Fieri said. “It’s about the execution of the whole deal. You can get down with whatever toppings you want, but the basics have to be covered.”

Guy Fieri with burgers
Guy Fieri poses as he serves hamburgers to guests during a welcome event for Guy Fieri’s Vegas Kitchen & Bar in Las Vegas. Ethan Miller/Getty Images for Caesars Entertainment

Fieri’s first tip? Start with seasoned ground beef. He recommends going for “80/20,” which means 80% lean and 20% fat.

“Start with your seasoned ground beef in a ball and place it on the hottest griddle or cast iron pan you can get,” Fieri explained.

Then, get ready to smash.

“You smash it down hard, we’re talking a half-inch thick,” he continued. “And let it crisp up and get all that delicious caramelization going.”

Once the sides of your patty are crunchy, flip it over and let the other side brown up. Now it’s time for the cheese.

Guy Fieri with burgers
Fieri smashes his burger patties to ‘get all that delicious caramelization going.’ Ethan Miller/Getty Images for Caesars Entertainment

“If you’re going to do cheese, try some American slices because they melt really well,” Fieri said.

And the Mayor of Flavortown has quite the trick to make sure you get the perfect cheeseburger.

“Put some sort of dome or metal bowl over the top and squirt a little water underneath,” Fieri said. “That steam will melt your cheese before you overcook your burger.”

Fieri then recommends using a brioche bun – toasted and buttered – to build your burger.

And don’t forget the “LTOP” as he calls it, also known as lettuce, tomato, onion, and pickle.

“But you gotta shred that lettuce, slice your tomato, and cut those white onions and pickles so thin that they only have one side,” Fieri added.

Guy Fieri with burger
Fieri also recommends using a toasted brioche bun for the perfect burger. Gerardo Mora/Getty Images for Planet Hollywood Observatory

If burgers aren’t your thing, Fieri recommends trying his Danger Dog recipe, which features hot dogs stuffed with jalapeños and wrapped in bacon.

Fieri spoke to Insider while promoting “Guy’s Restaurant Reboot,” in which he distributed more than $300,000 in grants to promising young restaurant entrepreneurs across America.

“The hospitality industry is as resilient as any, but this past year has been a challenge like we’ve never seen,” Fieri told Insider.

“But I’m not here to say the government shoulda, woulda, coulda done this, that, or the other thing,” he added. “My sense of personal responsibility led me to help in the ways I could and I’ll continue to do so. I’m more of a get ‘er done kinda guy than the one who points fingers.”