How to Cook Burgers on the Stove: A Complete Guide


Cooking a burger on the stove is one of the most popular methods, but how long should you cook it for? The answer depends on the thickness of your burger and your desired level of doneness. In this article, we will provide you with a comprehensive guide on cooking burgers on the stove. We will also share tips on how to ensure your burger is evenly cooked throughout. Let’s dive in!

How Long to Cook Burgers on the Stove?

How long to cook burgers on the stove?

The cooking time for burgers on the stove varies based on their thickness and your preferred level of doneness. For thinner burgers, cook each side for two to three minutes. If you prefer a medium-rare burger, cook for three to four minutes per side. For well-done burgers, cook for four to five minutes per side. Remember to flip the burgers only once during cooking to retain their juices.

If you’re not sure whether to grill or fry your burgers, refer to our helpful guide that provides cooking times for both methods.

The Best Way to Cook a Burger on the Stove: Use a Cast Iron Skillet

If you want to achieve the best results when cooking burgers on the stove, opt for a cast iron skillet. The superior heat retention and even cooking of a cast iron skillet make it the ideal tool for perfectly cooked burgers. Moreover, it’s easy to clean and maintain.

To cook burgers on the stove using a cast iron skillet, preheat the skillet over medium-high heat. Then, add your burgers to the hot skillet and cook each side for approximately 3-5 minutes, or until they are cooked through. Flip the burgers only once during cooking to develop a nice crust. Once cooked, remove the burgers from the skillet and savor the deliciousness!

Preheating the Skillet

Preheating the skillet

To ensure optimal cooking, preheat the skillet on medium-high heat for about 5 minutes before placing your burgers on it. Cooking your burgers on medium-high heat at approximately 375 degrees Fahrenheit will yield the best results.

After cooking, let your burgers rest on a plate for a few minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a juicier and more flavorful burger. Serve your burgers with your favorite toppings and enjoy!

Adding Oil and Browning

Adding oil to the pan

When cooking burgers on the stove, ensure the bottom of the pan is coated with enough oil. This prevents the burgers from sticking. Cook the burgers for around 10 minutes, flipping them once, until both sides are browned and the burgers are cooked through. Serve with your preferred toppings.

Juiciness and Resting Time

For juicy burgers, allow them to rest for a few minutes before serving. Resting allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a more succulent burger. Before cooking, season your burgers with salt and pepper. Cooking them for approximately three to four minutes per side will give you a medium-rare burger. Remember, resting your burgers is crucial for maximum flavor and juiciness.

Extra Tips for Cooking Burgers on the Stove

Extra tips for cooking burgers on the stove

Here are some additional tips to ensure your burgers turn out fantastic every time:

Choose the Right Beef

For the best results, use 20% fat beef, such as chuck or brisket. These leaner meats provide both crispiness and juiciness to your burgers.

Season Sparingly

Adding too much seasoning to the ground beef before forming the patties can result in a compact and tough texture. Instead, sprinkle just enough salt, pepper, and your favorite flavors onto the individual patties and mix them thoroughly.

Shape the Patties Properly

Roll the ground beef into balls and then press them into discs to create perfectly shaped patties. This technique helps the meat cook more evenly and retains its juices, ensuring a tender and juicy burger.

Check the Internal Temperature

To determine the doneness of your burger, use an instant-read thermometer. For medium-rare, aim for an internal temperature of 53°C. For well-done, continue cooking until the temperature reaches 70°C.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Burger FAQs

Here are some common questions about cooking burgers on the stove:

How long should I cook my burger for?

The cooking time depends on the size and thickness of your burger. A general rule of thumb is to cook it for 3-5 minutes per side, or until it is cooked through.

What temperature should my burger be cooked at?

You should cook your burgers on medium-high heat, around 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Do I need to flip my burger during cooking?

Yes, you should flip your burger at least once during cooking.

How can I tell when my burger is done?

Use a digital food thermometer to check the internal temperature of the burger, which should be at least 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Alternatively, press down on the burger with a spatula – if it springs back up, it is likely ready to eat!

What are some tips for cooking the perfect burger?

  • Use fresh, high-quality meat.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Cook on a preheated grill or stovetop.
  • Flip burgers only once and avoid pressing down on them.
  • Let burgers rest before serving.
  • Serve with your favorite toppings.

What should I serve my burgers with?

The options are endless, but popular choices include fries, salad, or roasted vegetables.

Can I add other seasonings to my burgers?

Absolutely! Feel free to experiment with different seasonings such as garlic powder, onion powder, and paprika.

What kind of pan should I use?

Any kind of pan will work, but a non-stick skillet or a grill pan is recommended.

Do I need to use oil?

Using a light cooking spray or vegetable oil can prevent the burgers from sticking, but it’s not mandatory.

Can I cook my burgers ahead of time?

Yes, you can cook your burgers ahead of time and reheat them before serving. Ensure they are cooked through before storing and heat them until piping hot before consuming.

What should I serve with my burgers?

The choice is yours! Popular toppings and sides include cheese, lettuce, tomato, pickles, onions, ketchup, mustard, and mayonnaise. Get creative and enjoy!

How many burgers should I make?

Plan on making at least one burger per person, but consider making more if your guests are big eaters or if you’re not serving many other dishes.

Can I cook my burgers on the grill?

Absolutely! Just be mindful of the cooking time and brush the grill with oil to prevent sticking.


Knowing how to cook burgers on the stove is essential for creating delicious meals. By following our comprehensive guide, you can cook perfect burgers every time. Whether you choose a cast iron skillet, grill pan, or regular skillet, ensure the burgers are cooked to your preferred level of doneness. Remember to let them rest before serving and don’t forget your favorite toppings. Now it’s time to fire up the stove and enjoy mouthwatering homemade burgers!

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