These Bacon Burgers with Maple Bourbon Caramelized Onions are so juicy, loaded with flavor, and easy to make. Bacon-infused ground beef that’s perfectly seasoned and flavored, with sharp cheddar cheese and maple bourbon caramelized onions. It’s savory, a lil’ sweet, and smoky: the best burgers you’ll ever have!

bacon burger with maple bourbon caramelized onions on white plate

Introducing my most favorite burger to date, these bacon burgers with maple bourbon caramelized onions! Ahhh, ’tis the season for cookouts, sunscreen, beach hangs, and delicious food. Listen, these here burgers have been made nonstop since their development. I love me a solid burger recipe and this one is it, y’all. Fast food burgers are cool but a homemade burger…even better!

Bacon-Infused Burgers with Maple Bourbon Caramelized Onions 🤤

What’s better than a pristine all-beef burger infused with bacon? Not a single thing, ha! These bacon burgers are well-seasoned and extra flavorful on their own. That flavor is then taken up several notches with succulent, maple bourbon caramelized onions. This burger experience is delivering a savory and smoky bite with a touch of sweetness, insanely good. It’s a big-time, flavor bomb here!

⇢ BBR recipes you’ll love: baked beans, this southern potato salad, refreshing frozen mango margarita, my fave honey mustard chicken, these chicken po’ boys, my honey chipotle fried chicken sandwich, and detroit-style pizza

bacon burgers with maple bourbon caramelized onions in white baking dish with crinkle cut French fries

Ingredient Lineup For These Bacon Burgers

(Note: the full ingredients list, including measurements, is provided in the recipe card directly below.)

  • Bacon: After cooking the bacon to a crisp, it gets infused with the burger mixture to deliver that smoked flavor we all love. I love the bits and pieces of bacon all throughout these burgers. I use thick-cut bacon for extra bite.
  • Yellow Onion: beef burgers with perfect sautéed onions, yuhhh.
  • Bourbon & Maple Syrup: the flavors for the caramelized onions, delish.
  • Ground beef: Can’t make this burger without the beef. I recommend using grass-fed, kobe, or wagyu ground beef for the best flavors!
  • Worcestershire: an umami-based powerhouse to enhance the burger mixture.
  • Mustard: I love the use of stone ground mustard here! While I like coarse mustard, you can absolutely use yellow mustard for this recipe.
  • Seasonings: garlic powder, old bay seasoning, and salt/pepper- to taste.
  • Olive oil: for cooking these bacon burgers right on the stovetop.
  • For the burger assembly: sliced cheese, hamburger buns, lettuce, tomatoes, and condiments like mustard, mayonnaise, and others as desired.

⇢ Friends, these bacon burgers with caramelized onions are jam-packed with flavor-filled ingredients, and so easy to whip up! There is no grilling required to make them, just ONE-PAN, and I love that about this burger recipe! 🙌🏾

ingredients for bacon burgers with maple bourbon caramelized onions laid out on white surface

How To Caramelize Onions

I love me some onions on a beef burger, it’s true. I do, I do, I do-ooooo. Ha. Caramelized onions are the result of a slow cooking process. The onions are slowly cooked to bring out their sweet, deep, and richly flavored essence. Afterwards, you’re left with deeply browned and caramelized onions that are a dream! Bourbon and maple syrup make them even more dreamy!

  1. Cutting the onions. First, let’s get that onion prepped. Slice off the stem/root ends of the onion and then cut the onion in half. Place the onion cut side down on a cutting board and peel off the outer papery layers. Then slice the onion into half-moons (sliced perfectly into half-rings).
  2. Cook the onions. After crisping the bacon, we’re gonna use the rendered bacon grease in the skillet to cook the onions. Place the sliced onions into the pan and stir to coat the onions with the grease. Let the onions cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions take on a deep, brown color. I find the sweet spot for caramelizing onions is over medium-low heat. Cooking over too high of a heat will cause them to burn and dry out, you don’t want this.
  3. Build the flavor. At the end of the cooking process, deglaze the pan with the bourbon. Then pour in the maple syrup and stir with the onions. The smokiness from the bourbon and that maple sweetness, chef’s kiss.
maple bourbon caramelized onions in white cast iron pan with wooden utensil on the side

Let’s Talk Bacon Burger Preparation

Getting these bacon burgers prepped couldn’t be easier, here’s how:

  • Cook the bacon. Since the beef mixture is infused with cooked bacon pieces, this step is first. After cooking the bacon, set it aside on a paper towel-lined plate to blot excess oil before proceeding with the next step.
  • Combine the beef mixture. Add the beef, worcestershire, mustard, garlic powder, old bay seasoning, and salt/pepper into a large bowl.
  • Mix & shape the burgers. Add the reserved bacon into the bowl with the beef mixture and mix everything until just combined. Then evenly divide and shape the mixture into 4 hamburger patties and set aside until ready to cook.

Tips + Tricks, & More For The Best Bacon Burgers with Caramelized Onions 🍔

  • USE QUALITY BEEF: Quality beef is going to refer to the flavor, tenderness, color, leanness, and juiciness of your beef. And since a beef burger is all about, well, beef…you want that good-quality stuff. I always aim for grass-fed, kobe, or wagyu beef whenever I make these bacon burgers. They’re considered more top tier because of the nutritional facts and/or superior flavor that they provide. While this is just a tip, please use whatever ground beef is accessible to you and rock on.
  • KEEP AN EYE ON THE ONIONS: As mentioned earlier, properly caramelizing onions takes some time. While cooking, frequently stir the onions and cook over a lower heat to ensure that they do not burn.
  • DON’T PRESS THE BURGERS: Resist the temptation to press on or smash the burgers as they cook, y’all. Doing so will force the juices and flavors to run out of the burger. Trust me: you want it fat, super juicy, and flavorful 😏.
  • HAVE FUN!!! Listen, while I love this recipe so very damn much, there are no hard or fast rules to a burger. If you love a certain spice, add it to the beef mixture. The list of burger toppings you could roll with are literally endless, too! We’ve added some jalapeños, crispy onions (yupp, on top of the caramelized onions lol), and more to these finished bacon burgers.
black hand holding bacon burger with maple bourbon caramelized onions on white plate

Burger Assembly & All The Fixins

I keep these bacon burgers dressed simple with buns, lettuce, tomato, mayonnaise, and mustard (as pictured). This is how I serve them, but you can surely put your spin on them. If you’re not a fan of sharp cheddar cheese, American cheese is also nice. Are you a pickle fan? Toss on some dill pickle (or bread and butter) coins or serve alongside a dill pickle spear, yum!

Are you team ketchup on a burger or no ketchup in sight? For buns, we love pretzel (sooo good!), brioche, and potato buns the most for this recipe! If you’re aiming for a low-carb option; skip the bun altogether and wrap your bacon burgers with caramelized onions in lettuce for a feel-good serving style.

What To Serve With Your Bacon Burgers

To me, burgers and fries are thee most compatible couple and I will die on that hill, ha! However, a nice potato salad or baked beans pairing ain’t never hurt anybody. Alternatively, if you’d like to keep things on the lighter side, a side salad and/or fruit salad is delish. Or devour this burger all on its own, mmm.

bacon burgers with maple bourbon caramelized onions in white baking dish with crinkle cut French fries on the side

These Bacon Burgers with Maple Bourbon Caramelized Onions are simply good, y’all…period, dassit, the end lol! Be sure to tag @butterbeready in your BBR recipe creations, I sure love to see it when you do. Until next time! 🤟🏾

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bacon burger with maple bourbon caramelized onions on white plate

Bacon Burgers with Maple Bourbon Caramelized Onions

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 1 review
  • Author: Quin Liburd
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Category: Main Entree
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American
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Description

These Bacon Burgers with Maple Bourbon Caramelized Onions are so juicy, loaded with flavor, and easy to make. Bacon-infused ground beef that’s perfectly seasoned and flavored, with sharp cheddar cheese and maple bourbon caramelized onions. It’s savory, a lil’ sweet, and smoky: the best burgers you’ll ever have!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 4 slices thick-cut bacon, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced into half moons
  • 2 tablespoons bourbon
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • 1 lb ground beef (grass-fed, kobe/wagyu recommended)
  • 1 tablespoon worcestershire
  • 1 tablespoon stone ground mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon old bay seasoning
  • kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 slices sharp cheddar cheese (we use Tillamook)

For burger assembly:

  • 4 hamburger buns of choice (we love using pretzel, brioche, and potato buns!)- lightly toasted, if desired
  • butter lettuce and tomatoes, as desired
  • mayonnaise, mustard, and other condiments, as desired 

Instructions

  1. Cook the bacon: Add the chopped bacon into a large (at least 10-inches, and preferably cast-iron) skillet over medium heat. Cook the bacon pieces, turning every so often, until completely crisp. Then use a slotted utensil to remove the crisp bacon and set aside onto a paper towel-lined plate, do not shut off the heat.
  2. Caramelize the onions: There should be plenty of rendered bacon fat in the skillet, add the sliced onion into the same pan and stir to coat the onions with the grease. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook the onions until tender and golden, stirring the onions every so often for even cooking, about 25-30 minutes. Properly caramelizing onions is a slow cooking process, and it will take time for them to break down and fully caramelize, careful not to overcook.
  3. Meanwhile, prep the bacon burgers: In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, worcestershire, mustard, garlic powder, old bay, salt/pepper-to taste, and reserved bacon pieces. Use your hands (fitted with disposable gloves, if desired) to bring the mixture together until just combined- overworking the burger mixture can lead to tough burgers, careful not to overmix.
  4. Evenly divide the bacon burger mixture into 4 even portions. Use your hands to flatten each portion into a burger patty, about 1-inch thick. Then set the patties aside on a platter/plate.
  5. Back to the onions: Once the onions are golden, create a well in the center of the pan. Pour in the bourbon to deglaze and stir together along with the onions, about 30 seconds- scraping up any bits with a wooden utensil. Then pour in the maple syrup and stir to combine. Remove the maple bourbon caramelized onions from the skillet and set aside. Carefully wipe the skillet clean.
  6. Cook the bacon burgers: Add the oil into the skillet over medium-high heat and heat through. Place the bacon burger patties directly into the skillet with a bit of space in between each one. Note: if you can’t fit all the patties in, work in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan. Cook for 3-4 minutes per side- until golden and slightly charred (or until your desired level of doneness). Do not press down/smash the burgers as they cook, we want to keep all the flavor/juiciness locked in!
  7. At the 1-minute mark left on the cooking time, place a slice of cheese over the top of each burger. I like to place a lid or similar heatproof object over the skillet to allow the cheese to steam and get extra melty. Then transfer the bacon burgers to a clean plate/platter and let rest for a few minutes before assembling the burgers.
  8. Serve: Assemble the bacon burgers as desired, on lightly toasted buns with lettuce, tomatoes, mayonnaise, mustard, and a helping of the reserved maple bourbon caramelized onions. Serve burgers alongside your favorite side items- if desired. Enjoy!

Notes

  1. Please read the blog post in its entirety for more tips + tricks.