Welcome to Team Traeger
Login  |  Register

Team Traeger Blog

Smoked Pastrami Burgers with Homemade "Fry Sauce"

Posted by sbulloch on May 16, 2014

Smoked Pastrami Burgers with Homemade

We love trying local and regional favorites everywhere we go, and one mid-west specialty left us hankering for more and uttering the most spoken phrase in our vernacular, "We could Traeger that." Meet the Pastrami Burger. Made famous in Utah by a local burger joint Crown Burger that slices their pastrami fresh off of a rotating spit for each order, these burgers are coveted gems and have been recreated (or at least attempted) by almost every burger joint in the area. We turned the Pastrami Burger into a Traeger classic by grilling the pastrami meat right alongside our burgers to add a ton of extra flavor and a little of the delicious "crust" the original burger's pastrami gets from roasting on the spits. And of course, any recipe from Utah wouldn't be complete without the state's condiment of choice, Fry Sauce! Basically, it is a seasoned combination of ketchup and mayonnaise. We Traegerized it a little by using Traeger's BBQ sauce combined with the mayo for a bit more of the smoky kick we love around these parts. Slather it on top of your burger, dip your fries in it, or lick it straight out of the bowl. To buy the original fry sauce Click here.

Here at Traeger, we know our pastrami and love to make our own. If you've got the time and ambition, we highly recommend it. If not, you can always substitute with pastrami from the deli. Be sure to use high quality ground beef with about an 85/15 meat to fat ratio for the juiciest and most flavorful burgers.


Smoked Pastrami Burgers with Homemade "Fry Sauce"


Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40-45 minutes
Serves: 8
Recommended Pellets: Hickory, Oak, Alder

2 lbs ground chuck
1 lb thick sliced pastrami
8 slices sharp cheddar cheese (we used white cheddar)
Traeger Beef Shake
8 Buns
Desired toppings: lettuce, tomatoes, red onions, pickles, etc.
For the Fry Sauce:
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup Traeger BBQ Sauce
1 teaspoon pickle juice or white vinegar (this is the secret ingredient!)


Start your Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open for 4-5 minutes to establish the fire. 

Divide your ground beef into 8 equal sized patties and season with Traeger's Beef Shake. Place directly on the grill grate, close the lid, and smoke for 30 minutes.

Smoked Pastrami Burgers with Homemade

While the burgers smoke, make the fry sauce. In a small bowl, combine the mayo, BBQ sauce, and pickle juice. Stir to combine, cover, and keep in the refrigerator until ready to use.

Smoked Pastrami Burgers with Homemade

Remove the burgers from the grill and turn the temperature setting to High. Allow the grill to preheat for 10-15 minutes before returning the burgers to the grill grate.

Cook on High for 4-5 minutes on one side then flip the burgers.

When you flip the burgers, add the pastrami to the grill in 8 individually portioned piles. Close the lid and cook for an additional 4-5 minutes.

Carefully transfer the pastrami to the top of the burgers and place a slice of cheese on each. If desired, you can also add the buns to the grill so they can get toasted. Close the lid again and cook until the cheese is melted and the burgers reach a desired level of doneness. The recommended internal temperature for a well-done burger is 175 degrees F.

Transfer the pastrami topped burgers to the bottom bun. Slather the top bun with the fry sauce, adorn with the burger toppings of your choosing and serve immediately. Enjoy!

Smoked Pastrami Burgers with Homemade

Smoked Pastrami Burgers with Homemade

Click below for a printable version of this recipe:

Smoked Pastrami Burgers with Homemade Fry Sauce.docx (15.75 kb)