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Popper Beef Burgers

Popper Beef BurgersGround beef, seasoned with salsa, is shaped into patties around cream cheese-stuffed jalapeño peppers, grilled and served topped with a chile con queso spread, chopped tomatoes and sliced ripe olives on grill-toasted hamburger buns. This recipe was a finalist in the 1999 National Beef Cook-Off.

Recipe Ingredients:

1 pound 80% lean ground beef
1/4 cup prepared thick-and-chunky salsa
4 frozen cream cheese-stuffed jalapeño peppers
1/4 cup prepared chile con queso (processed cheese spread with chiles)
1/4 cup chopped fresh plum tomato
2 tablespoons sliced pitted ripe olives
4 hamburger buns, toasted

Cooking Directions:

  1. Combine ground beef and 1/4 cup salsa in large bowl, mixing lightly but thoroughly.
  2. Divide beef mixture into 4 equal portions and lightly flatten into thin patties. Place one stuffed pepper in center of each patty. Wrap the beef around the pepper to enclose, sealing seams and forming a ball. Flatten balls into patties about 4-5 inches across and 1 inch thick.
  3. Place patties on grill over medium ash-covered coals. Grill covered, 15 to 16 minutes to 160°F (71.1°C) internal temperature, turning occasionally.
  4. Spread 1 tablespoon chile con queso evenly over top of each burger. Sprinkle with tomato and olives and serve on hamburger buns with additional salsa as desired.

Makes 4 servings.

Test Kitchen Tip: Cooking times are for fresh or thoroughly thawed ground beef. Color is not a reliable indicator of ground beef doneness.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (1/4 of recipe using 80% lean ground beef): 459 calories; 24 g fat (9 g saturated fat; 7 g monounsaturated fat); 86 mg cholesterol; 746 mg sodium; 32 g carbohydrate; 1.9 g fiber; 28 g protein; 6.2 mg niacin; 0.4 mg vitamin B6; 2.4 mcg vitamin B12; 4.0 mg iron; 26.8 mcg selenium; 5.7 mg zinc.

Recipe and photograph courtesy of The Beef Checkoff.