Whiskey Burger

Once you make this Whiskey Burger, you’ll never make plain hamburgers again! Whiskey gives these hamburger patties the most delicious flavor!

We love grilling recipes like these burgers! Also be sure and try our famous Whiskey Flank Steak that uses the most flavorful steak marinade! Let’s not forget about chicken on the grill…try our Favorite Chicken Marinade that we use all year long!

Whiskey Burger on a plate with a pick

Juicy, Marinated Whiskey Burger

I am talking game-changing hamburger recipe here. This Whiskey Burger is made up of hamburger patties that are marinated in whiskey and garlic. Yes, I said marinated in whiskey. I have your attention now, right?

Hamburger recipes can be pretty basic, or they can be pretty outrageous like our BBQ Bang Bang Hamburgers! The key to the best hamburger recipes is getting the most flavor in your hamburger patty and the toppings.

Actually, we’ve got BOTH bases covered in this burger recipe. The most flavorful hamburger patties AND the most delicious topping…caramelized onions. Not an onion fan? Try these anyway.

Caramelized onions are so sweet they almost don’t taste like an onion, or they are the best versions that onions can be.

They top this simple but knock your socks of hamburger in the best way possible. Along with the onions we’ve got bacon. No need to talk about why there’s bacon here, because BACON.

How Do You Make A Whiskey Burger?

But let’s get down to the actual hamburger patty. We’re soaking beef hamburger patties in whiskey and garlic BEFORE putting them on the grill. Genius, right? I mean, who has ever marinated an actual hamburger patty?

I’m going to say I invented this one.

whiskey burgers marinating in garlic and whiskey

You only need about an hour to get the most flavor soaked in to the meat. One hour of waiting is going to be totally worth it, so grab a beer and hang out while these babies are soaking up that whiskey and garlic.

Once the beef patties are done soaking, dry them off well (you don’t want any extra whiskey hitting your open flame) and season them with salt and pepper.

What Temperature Should Hamburgers Be Cooked To?

There are some guidelines to follow, but it depends on how you like to eat your burgers! Follow the cooking temperatures below to make your burgers come out perfect every time! 

  • RARE: 125 degrees with a 3 minute resting time
  • MEDIUM RARE: 130-135 degrees
  • MEDIUM: 135-140
  • MEDIUM WELL: 145 degrees plus a 3 minute resting time
  • WELL DONE: 155 degrees
Whiskey Burgers are a hamburger recipe with caramelized onions and bacon

Hamburger Topping Ideas

In addition to the caramelized onions, bacon and cheese there are so many different hamburger toppings you can add!

This is the classic way that we like to make these Whiskey Burgers but we like to set out different toppings, too, especially for parties!

  • Tomatoes
  • Avocado Slices
  • Lettuce
  • Fried Eggs (yep!)
  • Sautéed Mushrooms
  • Different Types Of Cheese

What Sides Go Best With These Whiskey Burgers?

Anything you’d already be serving with your everyday hamburger or cheeseburger recipe! But here’s a few of our favorite cheeseburger side dishes!


Whiskey Burger

  • Author: Dan
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x

These whiskey-flavored hamburgers are going to be a hit at any BBQ or tailgating party!



  • 4 beef hamburger patties (store bought or try our Homemade Patties!)
  • 1/4 cup whiskey
  • 2 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 4 strips of bacon, cooked
  • 8 slices of yellow American cheese
  • 2 large yellow onions, peeled, cut in half and thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter or reserved bacon grease
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 hamburger buns


  1. Pour the whiskey into a shallow dish that will hold all the hamburger patties in one layer. Place the hamburgers in the whiskey and top with the chopped garlic. Marinate the burgers for 30 minutes on one side, then flip over for another 30 minutes on the other side.
  2. To make the onions, add the olive oil and the butter to a skillet over medium-low heat. Add the onions and salt and cook turning the onions often for 30 minutes until they are brown and caramelized. When the onions are done, set them aside in a bowl covered with foil.
  3. Grill the burgers over medium-high heat for 5 minutes per side for a medium/medium rare burger. Refer to the temperature chart in the post for correct temperatures.
  4. The last minute of cooking, add two slices of cheese to each burger and close the lid to melt the cheese.
  5. Remove the hamburgers to a platter.
  6. Top the hamburgers with some of the caramelized onions and a trip of bacon then serve.

Recipe Notes

We also use our Slow Cooker Caramelized Onions for these burgers!

  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Grill
  • Cuisine: American

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42 Responses
  1. Thalia @ butter and brioche

    This is pretty much the ultimate burger.. definitely craving a bite of one right now. It looks delicious!

  2. David @ Spiced

    Woah! These look like the perfect burgers for gameday. I love a god bacon cheeseburger, and I love whisky…so it does without saying that I would love these burgers! Pinning so I can come back to it later!

  3. Chris @ Shared Appetite

    These burgers look awesome dude! Sounds like some high end gourmet man food… my type of eats! So glad it looks like you’ve connected with David and Matt. They are both great guys. You should check out Mike @ The Iron You as well. Us dude food bloggers gotta stick together! haha

  4. Ilona

    Hi there from the Netherlands! :) I made this recipe yesterday for our recurring ‘burger night’ at home (every other Friday) and it was awesome! Never thought of soaking burgers in a mixture of garlic and whisky before grilling, but it worked out wonderful. It’s a keeper :)
    Love and -xxx-

  5. Dan

    Thanks so much Ilona! I’m glad you liked them, it’s definitely a keeper for us too! Thanks for checking in from the Netherlands!

  6. Miriam

    Dying to make these, but kinda nervous about the flare from the alcohol? I will be trying these as sliders for a large group – so with the grill loaded up I am a bit in panic mode. Did you have any issue with this?

    cannot wait to devour one of these!

    1. Dan

      There really shouldn’t be any flare from the alcohol but you can also pat the burgers dry with a paper towel before you throw them on the grill so it won’t be an issue at all. Sliders sound great!

      1. Miriam

        Thanks for the reply Dan! Will try that.

        Memorial Day weekend can’t come soon enough…we are a burger clan, so these will be a hit, I’m sure!

  7. todd

    “Nothing else is required. Except maybe a shot of whiskey on the side.” – Agreed – as long as it’s not the same whiskey the burgers were in. :P I’m adding this to my list of recipes to try. Sounds delicious!

  8. Thomas Anastasio

    We’re experiencing a blizzard right now on the east coast but I NEED to grill this up ASAP. Looks amazing!

  9. Genie

    Hey there from Canada!Being a whiskey girl, I can’t wait to make these! & carmelized onions too? Oh be still my beating heart! Thanks for the awesome recipe!

  10. Scott

    Great recipe, burgers were fantastic…Caution for those whiskey lovers who don’t like to waste whiskey – Do. Not try and save the marinade to drink later….yuk. ;)

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Side “Bar”

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