RECIPES: Recipe Details

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Wisconsin Brat Burger

The bratwurst inspired spices and toppings of this burger capture the flavor and spirit of Wisconsin. Although the bratwurst is not recognized as Wisconsins official state food, many residents would argue that it should be. As a staple of family reunions, picnics, summer festivals, tail-gate parties and sporting events throughout Americas Dairy Land, bratwurst is uniquely connected to the heritage and traditions of Wisconsin. One taste of this burger and you will make the connection, too.


2 pounds ground chuck (80/20)
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground mace
¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
2 to 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil, for brushing on the grill
1 can (approx. 14 oz.) sauerkraut, drained
8 ounces aged Swiss cheese (thinly sliced)
6 tablespoons Dijon mustard
6 good quality onion buns, split


Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill or preheat a gas grill to medium-high.

Combine the black pepper, nutmeg, mace, cardamom and allspice is a small dish. Gently incorporate the spice mixture into the ground beef a little at a time, careful to not "overwork" the meat. Once combined, let the meat rest in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes. Shape into 6 patties after resting.

When ready to grill, brush the grill rack with vegetable oil to prevent sticking. Place the patties on the grill and cover, turning only once during cooking until done. Approximately 5 to 7 minutes per side for medium. During the last 2 to 3 minutes of cooking top each patty with approximately 2 tablespoons sauerkraut and cheese slices. Place the buns split side down on the outer edges of the grill, or if available the upper grill rack, to lightly toast during the last 2 minutes.

To assemble: Place a sauerkraut and cheese topped patty on a bun bottom. Top with 1 tablespoon of Dijon mustard and the bun top.

Makes 6 burgers.


Any sauerkraut remaining after assembling the burgers can be served as a side dish or made available as a condiment.