Burgers are a blank canvas for the culinary world; so many unique flavors can be mixed-and-matched with a juicy beef patty and a fluffy bun. For the true cowboy burger experience, you can’t go wrong with Southwest Cheeseburgers. The burgers are as savory as can be, and the garlic-lime mayo helps add to the succulence of each bite, while bringing a little brightness. But it’s the grilled chiles that really bring the classic Southwestern heat to each patty, and a little verdancy to the deep beefiness. The grill is blazing a new path to flavor with these Southwest Cheeseburgers.

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  • 6 poblano or Anaheim chile peppers
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 clove garlic, finely grated
  • zest of 1 lime
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more, to taste, divided
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper, plus more, to taste, divided
  • 3 pounds ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 6 slices Pepper Jack cheese
  • 6 potato buns, split and toasted
  • romaine lettuce leaves, to taste, for topping
  • red onion, to taste, sliced, for topping


Step 1 –Preheat the grill to medium heat.

Step 2 –Grill the chiles, turning them frequently, until the skins are completely blackened, about 10 minutes.

Step 3 –Seal the chiles in a large resealable plastic bag and let them sit for 20 minutes.

Step 4 –Transfer the peppers from the bag and use a knife to scrape off most of the blackened skin.

Step 5 –Pull off the stems and slice the chiles in half lengthwise.

Step 6 –Scrape out the seeds and the membranes.

Step 7 –Slice the chiles into thick strips.

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Step 8 –Mix the mayonnaise, the garlic, the lime zest, and the lime juice together in a small bowl.

Step 9 –Season the mayo mixture to taste with the salt and the black pepper.

Step 10 –Combine the beef, the Worcestershire sauce, the cumin, the cayenne pepper, 1 teaspoon of the salt, and 1 teaspoon of the black pepper in a large bowl.

Step 11 –Gently but thoroughly, mix the meat mixture with clean hands until well combined.

Step 12 –Form the meat mixture into six 1-inch-thick patties.

Step 13 –Season the patties with the salt and the pepper.

Step 14 –Grill the burgers until well-marked and firm enough to flip, about 3-4 minutes.

Step 15 –Once flipped, top the burgers with the chile strips and 1 slice of the Pepper Jack cheese.

Step 16 –Grill until the burgers reach an internal temperature of at least 130 degrees F for medium-rare, about 3-4 minutes. In the last 30 seconds, cover and cook until the cheese melts.

Step 17 –Spread the garlic mayo on the buns.

Step 18 –Serve the burgers on the buns topped with the lettuce and the onion.