ALERT: Air frying hamburgers (or cheeseburgers) is not a fad. While I’m normally one to light up the grill if I’m making hamburgers or smash them on a griddle, the air fryer is a surprisingly easy and delicious way to get a hamburger done.
The downside of the air fryer, as always, is depending on the size of your air fryer, you can only make a few of these burgers at once so it’s not exactly right for a huge BBQ. But the plus side is that it’s very fast, cooks the burgers evenly without flipping them, and you’ve never had cheese as melty as air-fryer melted cheese.
So, let’s dig in and make some delicious air fryer burgers!
Safety Tip for Air-Frying
Any time you are air-frying meat that has a high fat content like bacon or, in this case, ground beef, it’s a very good idea to add some water to the bottom of your air fryer basket. In fact, I would say it’s an essential step.
The water in the bottom won’t interfere with the air-fryer cooking at all, but it will catch all the fat that drips off the meat and keep it from smoking. If you forget this step, you’ll know it because your smoke alarm will almost certainly go off while you make these burgers.
My Favorite Blend for Hamburgers
I’m a firm believer that fat is flavor when it comes to burgers, so I always look for at least an 85-15 blend for ground beef when I’m making burgers. You can also purchase an 80-20 blend.
If you can find ground chuck in an 80-20 blend, you should snag it and freeze it for burger days. I think it’s the best store-bought burger blend if you don’t want to make your own. (If you do want to venture into making your own burger blend, I posted my favorite ground beef blend for burgers on Macheesmo a few years ago. It’s a cooking project no doubt.)
How to Air Fry Hamburgers
Once you have taken the safety step of adding water to your air fryer basket, spray your basket with some nonstick spray so the burgers don’t stick. Then season your burgers well with salt and pepper and add them to the basket.
They will need to air fry for about 8 minutes at 350˚F and, importantly, you don’t need to flip them while they cook. Just let them cook!
Once the burgers are cooked, you can add some cheese to the burgers and fry them for another 1-2 minutes until the cheese is perfectly melted.
Toasting Buns in the Air Fryer
This is an optional step, but kind of fun. If you have some extra space around your air-fryer basket, you can add your burger buns and toast them in the air fryer for a minute or two. It’s okay if the buns are even at an angle. They will toast just fine!
What to Serve With Hamburgers
Any time I’m making burgers, I’m thinking about side dishes and there are so many delicious options on Simply Recipes. Check out this easy macaroni salad that you could make well in advance. For something a little lighter, check out this caprese corn salad or this fruity watermelon and feta salad!