Karl’s Barbecued Chili Burgers

Jan decided that she wanted a traditional Labor Day barbecue with sausages and “plain” hamburgers. Sunday, just as I was forming the patties, she passed along the information that the kids wanted “doctored” hamburgers.  It was time to get creative—this was a no recipe, what do I have on hand at the last minute idea.

Karl's Chili Burgers (close up)

Karl’s Barbecued Chili Burgers
(close up)

I like chopped grilled onions on my burgers—Jan is a slice of raw onion person. I had a pile of chopped onions ready to go. I had also harvested the peppers off of our chili plant and I had a pile of not too spicy red peppers. Throw in some garlic, Ancho chili powder, cumin, black pepper and salt and you have a fairly good “doctored” burger.  I do try to make everybody happy and it only took a few minutes to throw this together.

Karl's Barbecued Chili Burgers with Plain Burgers and Sausages

Karl’s Barbecued Chili Burgers
with Plain Burgers and Sausages
and Grilled Onions on the Side

I had decided to make fresh buns to go with the burgers and sausages. I also laid out the “fixings:” lettuce, tomato slices, raw and grilled onions, mayonnaise, mustards (French and German) and ketchup. My diners were free to top their burgers and sausages as it pleased them.

Note: I am a bit late posting this Sunday’s dinner, because of our cat, Ren. She has a catch and release policy—she catches wild things and releases them into the house. We have spent several days trying to get a very large and very quick rat out of our bedroom.

Karl’s Barbecued Chili Burgers

Note: For two burgers.


¼ cup yellow onion, finely diced
1 clove garlic
1 red chili, minced (about 1 Tbs.)
1 tsp. Ancho chili powder
¼ tsp. cumin
Pinch black pepper
Pinch kosher salt

½ lb. hamburger

The “Fixings”

Karl’s Hamburger/Hot dog Buns
Tomato slices
Onion, raw and/or grilled


1. Sauté the chopped onions, in a small pan over medium heat, until translucent, about two minutes.

2. Add the minced chili and garlic and sauté one minute more.

3. Add the chili powder, cumin, pepper and salt and cook for one more minute.

4. Transfer the onion mixture to a bowl to cool.

5. Mix the raw hamburger with the onions and form them into patties.

Note: This recipe is for just two patties, double the ingredients if you are making four burgers.

6. When your coals are ready, grill the burgers for 6-8 minutes per side, directly over the coals.

7. Wrap the burgers in foil for five minutes and serve with the “fixings.”

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Filed under Barbeque, Beef, Main Dishes

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