Pilsner Chimichurri Burgers

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  • Difficulty 2
  • Prep Time 25 mins
  • Cook Time 15 mins
  • Serves 4
  • Difficulty 2
  • Prep Time 25 mins
  • Cook Time 15 mins
  • Serves 4
Originally from Argentina, chimichurri is a must-have sauce with grilled meats. It also makes a mouth-watering marinade, is a tasty addition to burgers and meat loaf, and can even partner with pasta as a pseudo-pesto. This green, herb-packed version gets a little flavour boost from crisp, golden pilsner — as do the homemade patties. There’s oil in the chimichurri, which lets you use lean ground beef and still enjoy juicy results.

Ingredients for the Pilsner Chimichurri

  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) finely chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
  • 1 jalapeño pepper (seeds and ribs removed, if desired), minced
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) pilsner
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) salt
  • 1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp (1 mL) pepper

Ingredients for the Burgers

  • 1-1/2 tbsp (22.5 mL) olive oil
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) minced onion (about half small onion)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
  • 1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) chili powder
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) pilsner
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) salt, divided
  • 450 g lean ground beef
  • 1/4 tsp (1 mL) pepper
  • 4 thin slices jalapeño Havarti, pepper Jack or other cheese (optional but recommended)
  • 4 burger buns, split and toasted
  • Toppings, such as lettuce or arugula, thinly sliced red onion and sliced tomato

Directions for the Pilsner Chimichurri

  1. 1. In a medium bowl, stir together parsley, oil, garlic, jalapeño, red wine vinegar, pilsner, salt, oregano and pepper. Let stand at room temperature until flavours are melded, 30 to 60 minutes. Chimichurri can be made ahead and sealed in an airtight container; let stand for up to 2 hours at room temperature or refrigerate for up to 12 hours. Leftovers will keep for up to 1 week in the refrigerator if the herbs stay submerged in the oil mixture.

Directions for the Burgers

  1. 1. In a small skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring often and reducing heat if necessary to prevent browning, until onions are translucent and light golden, 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic, cumin and chili powder. Cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute.
  2. 2. Add pilsner and 1/2 tsp salt. Cook, stirring often, until almost no liquid remains, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.
  3. 3. In a large bowl, combine beef, onion mixture, 3 tbsp (45 mL) of the Pilsner Chimichurri, remaining 1/2 tsp salt and the pepper. Set aside remaining chimichurri for serving. Using hands, mix beef mixture just until combined (do not overmix). Divide into 4 patties, each about 3/4 inch thick. Using knuckles or spoon, press down centre of each to make a depression (patty will be about 1/2 inch thick in centre). Place on a plate, cover and refrigerate until ready to cook.
  4. 4. Preheat barbecue, grill pan or skillet to medium-high. If using a barbecue, clean and oil the grates.
  5. 5. Place burgers on grill or in pan. Close lid and grill until well browned and instant-read thermometer inserted sideways into centre of patties reads 160°F, 3 to 4 minutes per side. During the last 1 to 2 minutes of cooking, top with Havarti (if using) and let melt.
  6. 6. Serve burgers immediately on toasted buns with preferred toppings and remaining chimichurri.


  • The cooked onion mixture will absorb any excess cooking liquid as it cools. You can do this step a few hours or up to 1 day ahead of making the burgers. Refrigerate the onion mixture in an airtight container and let stand until room temperature before adding it to the ground beef.
  • If you’re using a barbecue, medium-high is 450 to 500°F.
  • Making a depression in the centre of each patty helps keep it from shrinking as it cooks.

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