Texas Tailgate Burgers

Pairs well with:


Bright and full-bodied, this Zinfandel wine is a curious contradiction in tastes.


• 2 pounds ground chuck
• 1 cup nacho style jalapenos, minced
• 1 teaspoons salt
• 1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
• 1 tsp chili powder

BBQ cheese
• 1 ½ cups BBQ sauce (purchase your favorite or use my recipe below)
• 2 cups shredded smoked sharp cheddar cheese
• ½ cup diced sweet onion (Texas 1015 if available)

Additional toppings
• Approximately 30 hamburger dills (depending on size)
• Approximately 30 BBQ kettle style potato chips
• 6 leaves of iceberg lettuce – coarsely chopped
• 6 onion hamburger buns, split

BBQ sauce:
• ½ cup ketchup
• 2 tbs Dijon mustard
• 2-3 dashes hot sauce (Louisiana style or Tabasco)
• 4-5 drops liquid smoke
• 1 tbs chili powder
• 1 tbs Worcestershire sauce
• 1 tbs blackstrap molasses



Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover, or preheat a gas grill to medium-high.
To make the patties, combine the chuck, jalapenos, salt, pepper and chili powder in a large bowl, handling as little as possible. Shape into 6 patties to fit the bun size. Loosely cover with plastic wrap and set aside.
To prepare the BBQ cheese, simply mix all ingredients together and set aside – do not refrigerate (you will be using them shortly and you don’t want them to be really cold)
When the grill is ready, brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook, turning once, until done to preference, 5 to 7 minutes on each side for medium. In the last 3 minutes of grilling, carefully place equal amounts of the BBQ cheese topping on each patty. Place the buns, cut side down, on the outer edges of the rack to toast lightly during the last 2 minutes of grilling.
To assemble the burgers, place an equal layer of BBQ kettle chips on each the bottom bun. Add a cheese-topped patty on top, followed by a layer of pickles, and an equal amount of lettuce. Add the bun tops and serve.