This is my absolute favorite burger recipe that we make almost weekly and my favorite quick and easy burger sauce! Enjoy a juicy, homemade burger with or without a bun, and pile on all those toppings. I love mine bunless, wrapped in lettuce, with melted cheddar and pickles…oh, and my favorite burger sauce, of course! This burger recipe is gluten-free, keto friendly, 21 Day Fix approved and also loved by my husband (on a bun). This post contains affiliate links for products I’m obsessed with.
A little fact about me:
I make a damn good burger.
Some of you are are looking at a burger on a bed of lettuce right now and questioning my credibility, but you need to hear me out!
These bunless burgers are freaking delicious.
And what is even more amazing is these are the EASIEST burgers ever – no chopping or mixing needed. And the burger sauce is delicious and easy, too! So let’s get to it!
My Favorite Burger Recipe
Everything I learned about making homemade burgers, I learned from Bobby Flay. That man knows what’s up. The best burgers, according to Bobby (we are on a first name basis now), don’t require anything mixed in…and are made with only a few ingredients.
Ingredients Needed for the Best Bunless Burger Recipe
Just a few simple ingredients is all you need for these yummy burgers!
- 1 1/4 lb ground chuck – I love using Butcher Box’s grass fed beef for this recipe. For those following the 21 Day Fix, you want to use a lean ground meat (Butcher Box is 90/10). If you are following a keto or low carb plan, you can increase to an 80/20 chuck roast.
- Olive or avocado oil – just a small teaspoon per burger.
- Salt – I love a course kosher or sea salt for these burgers. Himalayan works well, too.
- Toppings – Cheese and pickles are a must for me, but you can load it up with your favorite toppings! I like to wrap mine in lettuce to save my carbs for homemade fries (that recipe is coming)!
Tips for making the best burger patties
- Prep all your toppings first and have them ready. Burgers cook quick and taste best fresh from the grill or pan. So have everything ready before you start!
- Don’t over handle the meat! Remove your ground meat from it’s packaging and divide it into 4 equal sections
- When you are making your patties, just shape them gently so they stick together and form a patty, but they don’t have to be a perfect circle. Again, if you over handle the meat, your burgers will become tough very quickly.
- After forming the patties, using your thumb, press a divot into each burger patty. This will keep your burger from puffing up into giant meatballs while cooking.
- Brush both sides of your burgers with olive oil and then sprinkle each side of the burger liberally with salt. Do this right before cooking – if you prep them ahead, the salt will draw out the burger flavor.
- While grilling, only flip once and don’t press your burgers down.
- And that’s it! Just a few simple steps to ammmmaaaaazing burgers!
And the burger sauce is just as easy!
Ingredients for Easy Burger Sauce
- Ketchup – this isn’t technically on the 21 Day Fix food list, but there are so many clean ketchup options out there now that are sweetened with organic sugar or even honey. I typically count 1 Tablespoon as one sweetener teaspoon for the Fix. If you can’t find this kind of ketchup, Stephanie from The Foodie and The Fix has an easy and yummy homemade ketchup you can make!
- Mustard – I use regular store brand stuff! It’s free on the FIX.
- Mayo – I look for an organic mayo, but any mayo works and is approved on the 21 Day Fix as a teaspoon.
You could also add some pickle juice to the sauce if you want. And even diced up pickles – yum!!!
How to Lettuce Wrap a Burger
First and foremost, if you guys like a burger with a bun, you gotta just go for it! My husband and daughter use regular whole wheat potato buns and my son eats his burger on a gluten free bun.
Me? Ever since having my first Lettuce Wrap Burger at In and Out…and then later at Five Guys, I have been hooked. I would much rather save my carbs for fries, but I still get to pick up my burger and eat it. I don’t feel like I am eating a salad. Does that make sense?
Wrapping your burger with Lettuce also means it’s Keto and Low Carb friendly!
Wrapping a bunless burger is super easy!
- Grab some iceberg or romaine lettuce (my favorite for the crunch factor)
- Remove the bottom stem from the lettuce, then wash and dry your lettuce leaves well.
- Lay one large lettuce leaf down, then top with burger. Add burger sauce and toppings. Lay a second large leaf over top. If you want, use a toothpick to fully secure it.
- Pick up the burger and enjoy! Yes, it’s a little messy, but you’ve got this.
Can I Cook Burgers on the Stovetop?
We typically grill our burgers, but you can definitely make these in a cast iron pan! In fact, most restaurants cook them this way. You could also air fry your burgers!
What to serve with this Bunless Burger Recipe
- The obvious choice is homemade fries (recipe coming soooo soon!)
- Corn on the Cob | Grandnanny’s House
- Greek Pasta Salad
- Street Corn Salad
- Baked Beans | The Foodie and the Fix
- Cauliflower Potato Salad | Stay Snatched
- Southern Style Potato Salad | Grandnanny’s House
- Roasted Corn and Black Bean Salad
- Watermelon Feta Blueberry Salad
If you make these, let me know what you think!! I hope you agree that they are the best burgers!
My Fave Burgers + Burger Sauce
- 4 tablespoons ketchup look for an organic naturally sweetened ketchup (if keto, use a no sugar ketchup)
- 2 tablespoons yellow mustard
- 2 teaspoons mayo
- 1 1/4 lb lean ground beef I prefer ground chuck
- 4 teaspoons olive oil
- Coarse kosher or sea salt
- Dill burger pickles
- Iceberg or romaine lettuce for wrapping burger or your favorite gluten free or whole wheat burger bun
- Sliced cheddar cheese
- Additional toppings: onions, tomatoes, bacon whatever you love! I happen to like a more plain burger.
How to make burgers
- Mix ketchup, mustard, and mayo together to make a burger sauce. Set aside.
- Divide ground beef mixture into 4 equal portions. Gently shape into thick burgers without over handling the meat - you just want them to stick together. Also, do not flatten. Instead, use your thumb to press a divot into each burger so they don’t plump up while cooking.
- Put 4 teaspoons of olive oil into a small bowl. Brush oil onto both sides of your burgers, the sprinkle each burger generously with salt.
- Preheat your grill or grill pan on medium high. Cook on a hot cast iron pan or a hot grill 4 minutes per side, flipping only once. Add additional time if you like your burger well done.
- Add cheese of your choice for the last minute of cook time.
- Remove from heat.
To wrap with lettuce
- Cut the bottom stem off of the iceberg lettuce head. Gently remove each leaf trying not to tear them in half as you do. Wash and dry well.
- Lay one lettuce leaf down. Place burger inside and top with burger sauce and add any desired toppings.
- Fold another piece of lettuce on top to enclose the burger and form a wrap. Pick up and enjoy!
This burger is on point! So easy and delicious! And for toppings I’m a simple cheese and lettuce girl so the lettuce wrap is perfect!