My Flanneryesque Burger Project

I’ve been hankering for a good burger the last couple of weeks and while I really wanted to bite again on the Flannery burger specials on Gilt Taste I just couldn’t fit it in the budget. I was determined to do something this week so I enlisted the help of my local meat market. I tried to use a basic template of Bryan’s burger blends, fit to what was available.

It was about 5lbs all together using roughly 1.25lbs of each cut. My local shop has fantastic stuff, most of it is prime or choice stuff marbled well enough to be close to prime.

This first blend was comprised of:
Top Sirloin
Boneless chuck
Flat Iron

The butcher dissuaded me from using the ribs as they were $7/lb and included a lot of bone, but I think I will just do it next time.

There was nice marbling in all the cuts and a big chunk of fat in the brisket and some nice sized ones in the chuck and sirloin. They cut out a small bone and nerve from the chuck and a nerve out of the Flat iron, then cubed it up and ground it once for me. I thought about doing a second but decided to defer this time. When I got home the meat was a bit uneven so I put it in a metal bowl and hand stirred it to even it out and then pattied it all up in 2-patty portions of about 1/4-1/3lb per patty for long term storage. I wanted to put it through the foodsaver but it crapped out so I just used ziplock bags.

I’m on my second round tonight and loving it. The final cost was a shade over $5/lb.

I’ll post a few pics the next time I cook them, and round two will include some pictures from the butcher’s.

The fat distribution was nice and even. The patties cooked well in my cast iron pan on the stove. The taste of this blend is flavorful and savory, and while it has plenty of juicyness and fat it’s not nearly what the Flannery burgers throw.

Sounds good Brent!

Nice. That less than 1/2 the cost of the monthly burger deals at Flannery’s. Any idea what percent fat you had in your mix? For that matter, does anyone out there know how to calculate percent fat, given the cuts and grades used?


Good questions. But if the Flannery blends are around 75% then based by the grease mine threw I would say the blend was 80-85%. I didn’t find the burgers dry at all, however, but there was much less fat in the pan.

At the butcher it’s really just by eyeball, short of sending a sample for analysis I don’t know how you could really determine the exact fat content. That’s why we tried to find a couple of pieces that had some good fat chunks in them. It would be more helpful to show with pictures which is why I’ll go prepared next time and take before and after shots of the cuts.

That rocks that they’ll grind it for you! I’ve done the same thing with meats at King’s. The last batch I did was brisket, ground Wagyu, Wagyu skirt steak, and boneless short rib. Unfortunately, they wouldn’t grind it for me, however, my wife got me the grinder attachment for the Kitchen Aid mixer and it worked well! Love doing custom blends, and it adds such nice flavor doing different meats! Look forward to hearing your next blend! -mJ

Great info, Brent! I’m actually thinking about doing the same thing w Dewars since I’m no longer buying from Flannery.

Here are a couple of my burger patty pics. Took them with my IPhone, the lighting is a bit off but you should be able to get the idea.

Can’t say that I am burger guru, I eat about 3 per year but people love the one’s I make with a little ground lamb.

It’s a riff on the burger Marlowe (in SF) produces…and i make my own horseradish aioli

I think the lamb adds a nice amount of gaminess


I have no issues with ground pork or lamb in the burger, but as the ‘typical’ burger is all beef I was trying to keep true to form.

The lamb burgers from Xian Famous Foods are off the hook…

That looks yummy! My lamb burger is only really about 10% ground lamb…the rest is ground sirloin from our local butcher

Good stuff, Brent. Count me in the camp of those who enjoy a good burger. Some of the best I have purchased ground have been Wagyu (We did a burger bash at Lenny’s a year or so back and I forget if you were there or not). Purchased from Fairway at about $8/lb and they were awesome. Did them on Tomcat Brioche rolls with all the fixins’.
These days I do my own grounding so approach is different than just paying at the till. I like to get different cuts and have found the one thing that does not really work for me is the brisket. Ribs work best for me with a sirloin mix.The key is grinding myself on my KA. I love it.
We should do a burger group thing at my home soon. I would love to ‘mix’ it up and have been looking for a reason to have another Pobega Cab-blast!

Those look excellent. I have to say for those who haven’t tried it, the next time you make homemade burgers try the “smash technique” - it produces a very different burger than the thicker, New York style patty that you often get, and I have to say it’s incredible.

Mike, I missed that one but Tomcat Brioche…mmm…you’re making me think…

As far as the grinding goes my roommate is the official owner of the house Kitchenaid mixer, and unfortunately the attachment hub is shot so no grinding for me. I actually found a great hand grinder in my grandma’s basement but it really needs to be re-chromed before I use it as it’s rusty. Now that I have this butcher across the street, however I’m not much motivated to grind at home. It’s good to know that Fairway will grind as well, I’ll have to revisit them but every time I go in there I just feel like the meat prices are crazy.

Thomas, I prefer the thick patty to the smash method by a long shot, and IMO when you are using real fresh ground beef vs. store-bought pre-ground hamburger I think the difference is negligible. Also, I spent 3.5yrs working at McDonald’s in high school so I know a bit about searing a burger on a flat metal surface…

Supersize me!

Eat at McDonald’s enough and that takes care of itself.