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The Juicy Lucy Cheeseburger

The Juicy Lucy cheeseburger

If you’re reading this and thinking, what the heck is a Juicy Lucy, prepare to drool over this insane twist on the cheeseburger. The Juicy Lucy Burger came out of Minnesota and is basically two burger patties formed around a huge chunk of cheese, grilled and served with fresh tomato and Boston leaf lettuce. The cheese in the centre melts while the burger cooks and you get a melty, gooey, cheesy mouthful when you bite into the burger. Traditionally the Juicy Lucy just has cheese in the centre, but for this version, I’ve added cheese on top too, to make a Juicy Lucy Cheeseburger that is next level. Personally, I think there is no such thing as too much cheese on a cheeseburger, but feel free to make this recipe without the cheese on top, the cheesy-filled burger may be what’s right for you.

What I like about the Juicy Lucy is that it’s different from your standard cheeseburger. The usual move it to just top your burger patty with cheese and let it melt, you can switch up which kind of cheese you use to mix it up, Swiss instead of America cheese, or Provolone instead of mozzarella, but it’s all kind of the same story at the end of the day - and I’m not knocking a regular cheeseburger, you can see I’m a big fan of all kinds of burgers, here and here - but this is literally a burger stuffed with cheese. I will repeat that. A burger. Stuffed. With cheese. Like come on, doesn’t that just even sound epic when you think about it? And what’s great too, is that it’s not even too complicated to make. I used shredded cheese because I figured it would melt a little easier than a hunk of cheese, cooked the burger perfectly on the Alchemy, and the way the heat is distributed on its plancha grill, the burger was cooked perfectly inside and had the signature melty, cheesy centre. I topped mine with tomato, Boston lettuce, pickles, mustard and ketchup. It was a beast of a burger. Make sure to keep reading to find out how to make my Juicy Lucy Cheeseburger or jump to the full recipe.

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a ground beef patty with shredded cheddar cheese in the middle

The first step in making your Juicy Lucy burger is to make your cheese-filled patty. Using 8-10oz of ground beef, form the beef into a round, flat circle, about half an inch thick. It doesn't need to be perfectly circular, but that's the shape you're going for. Place about half your shredded cheese in the centre of your ground beef.

hands folding over the ground meat to cover the cheddar cheese

Using both hands, fold over all of the edges of the meat toward the centre, to completely cover the cheese.

A formed juicy Lucy patty

Keep forming the meat into a thick burger patty shape, it's okay if some of the cheese is peeking out, it will just melt or crisp up. You do want the cheese to be covered by meat as much as possible and for your burger to be a uniform shape, so it cooks through properly. Once formed, salt and pepper both sides of the patty.

The Juicy Lucy burger seared on the grill

Place your burger onto the hot grill and let it cook about 6-8 minutes, until the bottom is nicely seared and browned and it has cooked midway through. Flip, and let it continue to cook another 5-6 minutes.

The juicy Lucy burger with melted cheese on top and brioche bun on the grill

When your burger is almost done cooking, add the rest of the shredded cheddar on top of your burger to melt a bit. Throw your bun onto the grill as well to toast.

Putting together the Juicy Lucy burger

Once your burger is cooked through and the cheese on top has started to melt, remove from the grill. To build your burger, remove the bun from the grill and add mustard and ketchup to the top bun. Place your lettuce then tomato on the bottom bun, then your Juicy Lucy cheeseburger, then your pickles. Close the top.

Cutting the Juicy Lucy burger in half

I'm not usually one to cut a cheeseburger in half, but the inside of the Juicy Lucy just needs to be shared, the oozy melted cheese is just so epic.

The gooey cheese inside the middle of the Juicy Lucy burger that is cut in half

And now for the full recipe...

The Juicy Lucy Cheeseburger Recipe

Makes 1 burger

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 12-15 minutes


8-10oz ground beef

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese, divided

½ tomato, sliced

4-5 pickle slices, either kosher or bread & butter

2 tbsp ketchup

2 tbsp mustard

2-3 leaves Boston lettuce

Brioche sesame bun

How to make it:

To make your cheese-stuffed burger, flatten your ground beef into a circle about a half an inch thick. Place about half of the shredded cheddar cheese in the center of your beef and then carefully pull up the sides around the cheese and fold them over into the center to cover the cheese and form the meat into a thick patty. The cheese should be completely wrapped in meat, but it’s okay if some cheese pokes out in areas. Salt and pepper both sides of the burger. Place on the grill to cook and let it cook about 6-8 minutes, until the bottom is nicely seared and browned and it has cooked part of the way through. Flip, and let it continue to cook another 5-6 minutes.

Place the remaining shredded cheddar cheese on top of your burger. While the cheese is starting to melt, place your bun on the grill to toast and then slice half a tomato into rounds. Let the cheese melt a bit on top of the burger and make sure it is cooked through.

To build your burger, add ketchup and mustard to the top bun. Place 2-3 leaves Boston lettuce and 3-4 slices of tomato on the bottom bun. Transfer your juicy Lucy burger to the bottom bun. Place your pickle slices on top of the burger and close the top. Now, it’s up to you if you want to bite into that cheesy goodness, or cut it in half to see that cheesy center ooze out. It is a monster of a burger, so we won’t judge you if you cut it in half and share it with a friend. Or don’t.

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Matt Basile



Chef Matt Basile is the founder of the Toronto-based street food brand, Fidel Gastro's, which, within four years, went from an underground sandwich pop-up to an internationally recognized food brand. Now almost a decade later, Matt has a still growing business of food experiences, restaurant consulting and new and exciting foodie-filled projects on the way. Matt always strives to be different in an industry steeped in tradition. Matt is also the author of the best-selling cookbooks Street Food Diaries and Brunch Life, and was the host of the travel food show Rebel Without a Kitchen for two seasons. More here!

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