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Grilled teriyaki burgers

Better Teriyaki Burger Recipe


Teriyaki burgers that aren’t too sweet, based on Kenji’s recipe at


  • 1 1/2 lb ground beef chuck (about 80% lean—so you can cook it less)
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tsp shichimi togarashi (see note)
  • 1 C thinly sliced scallions
  • 1 C Teriyaki Sauce (homemade or a good quality one from the store)
  • 4 soft hamburger buns
  • 4 Tbsp mayonnaise, Japanese-style is best
  • 2 C finely shredded green cabbage

Teriyaki burger ingredients


  • Preheat your grill for indirect cooking by placing lit charcoal under one half of the grate. 
  • Form the beef into patties that, with a divot in the center, are a little wider than your buns. Season them well with salt and shichimi togarashi on both sides. Refrigerate until ready to cook. 

Seasoned patties for teriyaki burgers

  • Scatter the sliced scallions on a large plate or cookie sheet. Divide your teriyaki sauce into two portions, one for grilling and one for dressing. 
  • Place the burgers on the indirect-cooking side of the grill. Insert the probes from a Smoke X2 into the patties and set the high-temp alarm for 140°F (60°C). Baste them once with teriyaki sauce. 

Probing a burger with a leave-in probe thermometer

  • When the high-temp alarm sounds, remove the probes from the meat and move the patties to the direct-heat side of the grill.  
  • Turn the burgers over every 30–60 seconds, basting with teriyaki each time you flip. The frequent additions of sauce should help slow the cooking so that you have time for the sauce to set up on the surface before the burgers are fully cooked. 

Flipping a teriyaki burger on the grill

  • Temp the patties frequently with your Thermape to check for doneness. Remove the patties from heat and place them on the scallion-strewn platter when they reach 160°F (71°C). 
  • Turn the patties over in the scallions so that they adhere to the sticky surface. Allow the patties to rest while you toast the buns on the grill. 
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  • Once the buns are toasted, spread the bottom half of each bun with mayo, top with half of the shredded cabbage, place a patty on top, baste with a little more sauce, top with the rest of the cabbage, and close it out with the top bun. 

building the perfect teriyaki burger

  • Dig in and enjoy!


This is a simple, balanced recipe that allows for the flavor of the meat to really shine. It will be best with the highest quality ground beef you can find. 

Also, the recipe calls for a Japanese spice blend called shichimi togarashi. This blend, or ones like it, can be found in well-stocked grocery stores in the Asian section or at your local Asian market.