Chris Jolly’s Cheeseburger Club

My friend Chris Jolly is as opinionated, passionate and adamant about his burgers as a person can be. This is one of his favorites, the one he makes when he is running the kitchen.

Chris Jolly's Cheeseburger Club
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 Burgers
  • 1½ to 1¾ pounds ground chuck
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 thin slices cheddar cheese
  • 12 slices good quality white bread
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 8 slices cooked bacon
  • 8 slices tomato
  • 4 romaine leaves
  1. Place the mixture on a work surface and divide into 4 balls of equal size. Form each into a patty about ¾ to 1 inch thick, tossing it back and forth between your hands. To ensure more even cooking, make a ½-inch indentation with your thumb in the center of the burger. Handle the patties as little as possible; do not work more than necessary.
  2. Prepare the grill to medium-high. When the coals are glowing red, after 15-20 minutes, cover with the grate.
  3. After 5 minutes, use a wire brush to thoroughly clean the grate. Brush the grate with oil.
  4. When the coals are covered with pale gray ash and you can leave your hand 5 inches above the fire for 2 to 3 second, the coals are ready.
  5. Sprinkle both sides of the burgers with salt and pepper.
  6. Place the burgers on the grate and grill until well seared on both sides, about 5 minutes for medium rare or 6 minutes for medium.
  7. A minute to two before the burger is done, top each with 2 slices of cheddar cheese and let melt.
  8. ALTERNATIVELY, place a cast iron skillet over high heat and when it is hot but not smoking add the burgers to the dry pan.
  9. Cook until well seared on both sides, 8 to10 minutes for medium rare or 10-12 minutes for medium.
  10. Place the finished cheeseburger on a slice of white bread. Top with another slice of bread.
  11. Spread 1 tablespoon of mayonnaise on each slice.
  12. Top each with two slices of bacon, 2 slices tomato and 1 leaf romaine lettuce.
  13. Top with another slice of white bread. Cut each sandwich in half and serve immediately.