We’re so ready to take a couple days this weekend to relax with our friends for Labor Day, and we’re definitely planning to throw some burgers on the grill while we’re at it. Having a long weekend to celebrate is a perfect excuse to make those burgers extra-special. We’ve been scouring our favorite food bloggers and cookbooks (so you don’t have to) to find the most delicious burger recipes inspired by other countries. Cool twist, right?
From Italy to Korea and back to the good ol’ U.S.A., these mouthwatering burgers are calling our names.
You can’t get much more decadent than a juicy burger covered in creamy guacamole. This Southwest Pepper Jack Burger recipe at Garnish and Glaze combines the spicy jalapeño with the cooling avocado perfectly. If your guests aren’t ready to commit to the guac actually on the burger, serve it on the side with chips and salsa. Then decide if you really want those guests at your party. (Ha, kidding).
I feel like we should be eating the Cuban Frita Burger at Half Baked Harvest on the back patio with Buena Vista Social Club playing in the background. The beef and chorizo burger is flavored with Spanish paprika for a distinctly Cuban flavor. But the fried egg and thin-cut fries on top are what make this one incredible.
The Blue Cheese Burger on a Baguette at Chez Us reminds me so much of Paris, with the crispy baguette, caramelized onions, and all that melty roquefort cheese. And oh the butter. This one is over-the-top rich, so you might as well serve it with a really great glass of red wine and some pomme frites. Splurge night.
My grandfather’s family always grilled with beer and bratwurst, even though none of us are from Germany. The Christof Manheim Burger at Cascadian Kitchen reminds me of these get cookouts. The bratwurst-and-beef patty is smothered in creamy cambozola cheese; if you can’t find it, substitute with brie and gorgonzola, which is what it’s made from. Then it’s topped off with sauerkraut (of course) and a delicious pomegranate onion jam. If you don’t want to make it from scratch, try The English Provender’s Caramelized Red Onion Chutney instead.
For easy Italian flavors, you can just top an all-beef burger with fresh basil, roma tomatoes, and mozzarella cheese, but the Cotoletta Milanese Burger at ChewTown gives you the full Italian experience. Ask for your grocer for free-raised veal to make this schnitzel “burger” that’s topped with parsley aioli and a bruschetta-like mix of tomatoes, onions, basil, and olive oil. The only thing it’s missing is that gorgeous Tuscan view. And that we can’t help you with. Sorry.
If you’re still dealing with a lot of heat this weekend, cool off with the light flavors in the Mediterranean Lamb Burgers we found Salt and Wind. Feta cheese and cucumbers give this lamb burger tons of flavor without being as rich or heavy as some of the other burgers here. We’re looking at you, France.
Splurge for some ground Kobe beef if you’re thinking about going with Japanese flavors for your burgers. The spicy soy and dashi sauce on the Japanese Hambagu Burger with Spicy Sesame Salad at Chindian Kitchen (also, photo at top) is something you don’t taste with your burger every day, which is kind of why I love this one. So different, but so good.
You can be cooking Gangnam style — isn’t that what Psy was saying? — with this Korean BBQ Chicken Burger recipe at Closet Cook. Grilled pineapple goes great with the chicken, but could also be an easy side dish for kids who may not want it on their burger. But the star is the gochjang sauce — that spicy, bright red sauce you’ll want to lick off your fingers. If you can’t find the gochjang (a Korean chili paste) locally, then you can make a close imitation with 1 Tbsp of red pepper flakes soaked in soy sauce and a dash of sugar.
If you can’t resist a traditional American cheeseburger, then go all out with the topping options. We love these Barbecue Bacon Cheeseburgers at Garlic and Zest that have everything from bacon and jalapeños to barbecue sauce and those adorable tiny pickles on top. Of course, you can leave off whatever you want. This is America, after all.