Diner-style Double Cheeseburgers

You cannot have a more American meal than a good cheeseburger. The diner-style burger dates back well over 100 years ago. Its history is open to debate, but what is well documented is that hamburgers gained national popularity in the mid 1800s, when factories began operating with 24-hour shifts for its workers. The men on the night shifts needed a quick, easy pick-up meal. This began the birth of the lunch wagon, or diner, where the hamburger became the immensely popular menu item we know today.

A diner-style burger is cooked on a flat top or griddle, allowing the patty to form a nice crust around the edges. There is not a lot of prep work that goes into the patties, and the least amount of mixing of the ground meat the better when making the patties. Use ground beef that has about 15% fat content. Form the meat into loose balls and flatten them out into patties on the hot griddle as they begin to cook. A simple sprinkling of salt and pepper as the patties cook is all that is required for this classic. We like to top our burgers with cheese and serve them with lettuce, tomatoes and pickles.

Diner-style Double Cheeseburgers

Servings: 4

2 pounds 15% fat ground beef

Salt and pepper to taste

8 slices American cheese

4 white hamburger buns

Sliced tomatoes, lettuce and pickles

Mayonnaise, yellow mustard and ketchup


  1. Divide the ground beef into 8 ¼-pound portions, rolled gently into loose balls.
  2. Heat a heavy non-stick skillet, griddle or cast-iron pan over high heat.
  3. Place half of each ground meat portion on the heated griddle. Use a heavy metal spatula to flatten the ground meat balls into thin, ½-inch patties.
  4. Sprinkle each patty with a little salt and pepper. Cook the patties over high heat for 2 minutes.
  5. Flip the patties and sprinkle with a little more salt and pepper. Cook for another 1½ to 2 minutes. Place a slice of cheese on top of each patty and let it melt for 30 more seconds.
  6. Stack 2 of the cheese-covered patties on top of each other and put them between the buns.
  7. Repeat the steps with the remaining ground meat. Dress the double cheeseburgers with the items suggested or your own toppings of choice.

This article was originally published in the July 2021 issue of 225 magazine.

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