Shake Shack Style Smash Burgers

Shake Shack Style Smash BurgersI have an undying love of Shake Shack, which is quite the loaded statement to make considering I’m a native Angeleno and this is home of In-N-Out Burger after all. I still remember the first time I had a Shake Shack burger in New York—and I don’t mean to sound facetious at all when I say this—but my entire burger-eating life changed from that moment on. They are, to me, the most delicious fast food burger out there (my only issue is that they’re very tiny) and I got way too excited when they started opening shacks here in Los Angeles, and even more so now that there is a location opening up right down the street from me in Pasadena. Which is just as dangerous as it is exciting. The recipe for these smash burgers comes from the Shake Shack cookbook, Shake Shack: Recipes & Stories. If you’ve never had one of these for yourself, now is your chance. Give the recipe a try and let me know what you think. This recipe is also featured in the second episode of Married and Hungry and you can watch it here!

Let’s start with the sauce for the burgers. You can’t have a good burger without some kind of special sauce to go in it. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayo, mustard, ketchup, pickle brine, and cayenne until smooth. Give it a taste and adjust seasonings accordingly, adding more brine or cayenne as needed. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge until ready to use.

**Tip: The sauce can be made up to 3 days in advance and stored in the fridge wrapped well in plastic or stored in an airtight container until ready to use!**


To make the burgers, in a large bowl, lightly combine the beef with salt, pepper, and granulated garlic. Divide into 8 equal pieces and then shape into rounds. Set aside.

**Tip: The recipe in the Shake Shack cookbook doesn’t call for granulated garlic, but I like to add it because I think it gives the patties just a bit more taste than regular salt and pepper.**

I think it’s important to note that the recipe below is written for 4 burgers, but for the post, I doubled the recipe so that I could feed eight people. I was bringing it over for my family’s weekly potluck and thought I’d kill two birds with one stone by shooting the post and bringing this to potluck. Keep that in mind when you’re reading the recipe. Also, you could easily double this recipe as I did, if needed. 

Let’s talk buns for a second. Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, melt in a tablespoon of butter. Split open two of the buns and place them cut side down into the butter and cook until lightly golden brown and toasted, about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Transfer to a platter and melt in the remaining butter and toast the rest of the buns as well.

**Note: I used Martin’s Potato Sandwich Rolls for this recipe (mainly because those are the same brand and rolls that Shake Shack uses and I wanted them to be as close to the original as possible), which I had to get off Amazon! You definitely use whatever buns you like though!**

In the same skillet, place a ground beef round in and then using a flat large spatula press down firmly to smash down the patty as flat as possible. Season lightly with a bit more salt and pepper on top and cook until the burger patty is caramelized and browned, about 2 ½ minutes. 

**Tip: To make the smashing process as easy as possible, I highly recommend cooking the burgers in a large super hot cast iron skillet. And you’ll want a large flat spatula to flatten the patty as much as possible!**

Flip over and place a slice of cheese on top and continue to cook for 1 more minute. Transfer cheeseburger onto a plate or platter and continue cooking the rest in the same way.

**Tip: The recipe calls for American cheese, but feel free to use Cheddar or whatever your favorite cheese is for the burgers. Anything will work!**

To assemble the burgers, spread the toasted buns with the sauce, place a cheeseburger on top of the bottom buns and then top with a piece of lettuce, and two slices tomato. Sandwich with the top bun and serve.

Another side note is that two of these below don’t have cheese because my brother-in-law doesn’t eat dairy and so I say this to say that they’re completely customizable. You can add whatever cheese or toppings you’d like! Crispy bacon, avocado, pickles or even grilled onions would be delicious!

I served the burgers with crinkle cut fries as they do at Shake Shack, again, just for that authentic experience. I just used frozen fries and cooked them in the oven until crispy!

I love this recipe so much because I’m obsessed with Shake Shack and them coming to Los Angeles was probably the greatest thing to ever happen for us. I also love it because they’re super easy to make. You can have dinner on the table, faster than going through the drive-thru. 

If you want even more Shake Shack recipes at your disposal, I highly recommend grabbing a copy of the cookbook, Shake Shack: Recipes and Stories. It’s packed with some great stuff to bring the fast food restaurant to your house. 


Be sure to give this recipe a try for yourself, and make sure to catch this week’s episode of Married and Hungry, where I teach my husband how to make this exact recipe, and we chat all about what our favorite fast food burgers are. If yours happen to be Shake Shack, just like me, then you’ll definitely want to try this recipe out as soon as possible!

Shake Shack Style Smash Burgers

These Shake Shack Style Smash Burgers from the second episode of Married and Hungry are some of the best burgers you'll ever have! Seasoned smash beef patty with cheese, lettuce, tomato, a special sauce and a potato bun!
Servings 4 burgers
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 30 mins

Ingredients

Sauce:

  • ½ cup good quality mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon ketchup
  • ½ teaspoon dill pickle brine
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Burgers:

  • 1 pound cold ground beef
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 4 potato hamburger buns
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 slices American cheese
  • 4 pieces green leaf lettuce
  • 8 ¼- inch slices plum tomatoes

Instructions

  • To make the sauce, in a small bowl, whisk together the mayo, mustard, ketchup, pickle brine, and cayenne until smooth. Give it a taste and adjust seasonings accordingly, adding more brine or cayenne as needed. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge until ready to use.
  • To make the burgers, in a large bowl, lightly combine the beef with salt, pepper, and granulated garlic. Divide into 4 equal pieces and then shape into rounds. Set aside.
  • Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, melt in a tablespoon of butter. Split open two of the buns and place them cut side down into the butter and cook until lightly golden brown and toasted, about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Transfer to a platter and melt in the remaining butter. Toast the last two buns and set aside as well.
  • In the same skillet, place a ground beef round in and then using a flat large spatula press down firmly to smash down the patty as flat as possible. Season lightly with a bit more salt and pepper on top and cook until the burger patty is caramelized and browned, about 2 ½ minutes. Flip over and place a slice of cheese on top and continue to cook for 1 more minute. Transfer cheeseburger onto a plate or platter and continue cooking the rest in the same way.
  • To assemble the burgers, spread the toasted buns with the sauce, place a cheeseburger on top of the bottom buns and then top with a piece of lettuce, and two slices tomato. Sandwich with the top bun and serve. Enjoy!

Notes

Adapted from “Shake Shack: Recipes & Stories”
Author: The Candid Appetite

 

Join the Conversation

  1. Surya-Patricia Lane Hood says:

    Your Shake Shack must be much better than the one I went to in Phoenix, AZ. I had an overpriced burger half the size of the regular burger, no tomato, onions, they all cost extra; a portion of fries (8 in all), and a milk shake the size of a small coffee cup. Needless to say, I have not returned there since.

    1. All I can say is that, now that you’ve got a banging good-lookin’ recipe for a delightful burger, you can show up that crummy shake shack in your town and never be disappointed and overcharged simultaneously again!

  2. BrandyBobandy says:

    I live in Phoenix and our Shake Shack is AMAZING. Surya-Patricia Lane Hood must have pissed someone off!! ?

  3. Curtis Wynn says:

    Funny! I read pretty much this exact technique in Bon Appétit years ago. I made them for one of my summer parties and they were a huge hit. So simple, so good!

    1. It is truly so simple and it’s my new way to make burgers from now on. I used to waste so much time shaping the patties and grilling them, but this is the way to go!

  4. These look amazing, and I’m going to try making these for our annual Memorial Day party!

    1. You’ll have to let me know what you (and your guests) think about it! I’d love to hear your thoughts.

  5. Jeannie Kingsford says:

    I really don’t see what is the big deal I haven’t been to the Shake Sack because I don’t need to. My family has made burgers that way since the 1940’s. My mother would serve potato chips and our family would sit at the kitchen table and listen to Gunsmoke on the RADIO. No need ever for fast food burgers. Bobs Big Boy was a good second back in the 60’s. Make this at home and you will never go out again; and your children will rave 70 years from now!!

    1. I’ve never Tried Bob’s Big Boy, but I must try it soon as the original is close by!

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