Herbed hamburger – an Italian twist to an American favorite

When I consider adding herbs to my ground beef, images of meatloaf or meatballs come to mind – not hamburgers.

But in fact, today I’m writing about a recipe I found in an old Italian cookbook on my shelf.  The recipe is simply called, “herbed burgers”.

A note:  Whenever you are preparing a meat meal – remember that the quality of the meat will play a significant role in the flavor.   For this reason, if you have the ability to find a good cut of meat, ask the butcher to grind it in his meat grinder.  There is no extra charge for this.

On the other hand, if you have your own grinder (I have a review of the MG800 here), then use that.


1 1/2 lb. lean ground beef.   Aim for a 90/10 or at minimum 80/20.

1 clove chopped garlic

1 scallion chopped

3 Tablespoons fresh basil chopped

2 Tablespoons fresh chopped parsley

salt and pepper

3 Tablespoons butter

Tomato Sauce:

3 Tablespoons olive oil

1 Medium onion chopped finely

11 oz. tomatoes, chopped

fresh basil leaves

3 to 4 Tablespoons water

1 teaspoon sugar

1 Tablespoon white wine vinegar

salt and pepper

What to do:

  1. Start by making the sauce.  Saute the onions in the olive oil over med. heat until translucent.
  2. Add tomatoes and cook 2 or 3 minutes.
  3. Add basil, cover pan and cook 8 minutes over med. heat.
  4. Add water, sugar and vinegar and continue cooking another 2 or 3 minutes.
  5. Season with salt and pepper.  Remove from heat to cool and use a strainer to strain the suace.
  6. Now, mix meat wiht garlic, onions and herbs in a bowl.  Season with salt and pepper.
  7. Make 4 patties.
  8. Heat the butter in a frying pan until foam subsides – then add burgers.
  9. Cook until brown on the bottom, turn and continue cooking until absolutely no pink is seen.
  10. Remove from pan, place on plate.
  11. Remove excess fat from pan, pour in sauce and bring to a boil.  Use this to deglaze the meat residue that was left.
  12. Serve with the burgers.

Interestingly, this recipe does not use any rolls for the burgers.   I think adding in some Assiago cheese ontop or Romano would be nice.

It reminds me of how sometimes I make my meatless meatballs, just to eat as is – not with any pasta or anything else.  Just as is.

So it is with this recipe.

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Easy Italian Recipes

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