Bacon burgers with bacon onion balsamic jam: If you’re looking for a new burger recipe, this recipe is IT. Bacon IN your burger. Bacon ON your burger. Does life get any better??

I debated about whether I should share a sweet or a savory recipe with you today. And it wasn’t an easy decision.

Cookies, bars, or burgers? Oh the choices!

But I felt really strongly about you guys needing these burgers in your lives. Like, pull-that-bacon-and-ground-beef-out-of-the-freezer-before-you-go-to-work strongly. You’ll regret not getting these bacon burgers with bacon onion balsamic jam on your tables tonight.

OK, maybe if you’re having pizza tonight you won’t regret not having these burgers. But for the love of all things good, don’t let the weekend go by without them!

The burgers are infused with bits of finely diced bacon and then topped with this other-worldly concoction of slow cooked red onions mixed with [yes more!!] bacon and balsamic vinegar that thickens into a jammy sauce. A nice liberal slice of sharp cheddar finishes everything off and by the end of dinner, you’ll wish you had the chance to rewind and start it all over again.

Damn that lack of time travel thing!

We served some baked oven fries alongside these bacon burger but frankly, any typical burger side will work here too – tots, ranch potato salad, mac salad coleslaw. I suppose a heaping mound of grilled veggies or fresh fruit would be nice too if you’re feeling a little guilty about all that bacon.

OR!! Guacamole crashed potatoes! Those crispy, buttery bits and edges of potato topped with guac?! How could you go wrong??

Let me tell you. We’ve found our new favorite burger. And you can assume that if you’re coming to our house for dinner any time this summer, these are what we’ll be making for you! Get ready!!


more killer burgers that we adore

bbq chicken burgers
BBQ Chicken Burger

chorizo and romesco burgers with manchego cheese
Chorizo and Romesco Burgers with Manchego Cheese

cheddar jalapeño chicken burgers with guac
Cheddar Jalapeno Chicken Burgers with Guacamole

pressed cuban burgers
Pressed Cuban Burgers

black bean burgers
Black Bean Burgers


faves from around the web

fake shack burgers
provençal burgers
california club chicken burgers
green chile cheeseburgers
pimento cheese burgers
whiskey blue cheese burgers with guinness cheese sauce and crispy onions
sausage and peppers burgers


Bacon Burgers with Bacon Onion Balsamic Jam

  • Prep Time: 25min
  • Cook Time: 8-10min
  • Yield: 4 servings


For the bacon onion balsamic jam:
4 thick slices applewood-smoked bacon, sliced into ½-inch wide pieces
1 large red onion, halved and thinly sliced (about 1 ½ cups)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/3 cup water

For the burgers:
2 thick slices applewood-smoked bacon, finely diced
1 ¼ pounds ground beef (85% or 90% lean)
½ tsp Worcestershire sauce
¾ tsp Kosher salt
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
4 hamburger buns, split
Sliced sharp cheddar cheese, optional


  • 01

    To make the jam:  Heat a large saute pan (that has a cover) over medium-high heat.  Add the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally until browned but not crispy, about 8 minutes.  Remove the bacon from the pan with a slotted spoon and let it drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Drain off all but 2-3 tablespoons of the bacon grease and then stir in the onions, about 1/4 tsp salt, and a pinch of pepper.  Cover the pan to cook the onions for 2 minutes.  Uncover the pan and in a splash of water, scraping the bits off of the bottom of the pan with a spatula or wooden spoon.  Recover the pan and cook the onions for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft and lightly browned.

  • 02

    After the onions have cooked for 10 minutes, stir in the balsamic vinegar, mustard, and water then return the bacon to the pan and bring the mixture to a simmer.  Simmer uncovered until the sauce thickens and is almost completely absorbed, about 2-4 minutes (mine definitely took upwards of 4 minutes).  At this point, the jam can be covered and refrigerated (you can make it up to 2 days in advance).  If using immediately, set it aside in a bowl until ready to use.

  • 03

    To make the burgers: Using a fork, lightly mix the finely diced bacon with the ground beef, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and ground pepper in a medium bowl until the ingredients form a uniform mixture.  Shape the burger mixture into four equal-sized patties, about 1-inch thick.

  • 04

    Cook the burgers on a grill pre-heated to medium-high, about 4-5 minutes per side.  Once you flip the burgers, add the cheese (if the cheese is thinly sliced, give it a minute or two on the second side before adding it).  Once cooked to desired doneness, remove the burgers from the grill and set them aside to rest for 5 minutes before adding the topping, placing on the buns, and serving.  No ketchup required.

adapted from Fine Cooking, July 2011, via Annie’s Eats and Cook Like a Champion

we love to see what you make!

tag what you make with #smellslikehomeblog on Instagram and follow along with me in my New England kitchen!

  • July 20, 2012 at 9:41 PM

    saving this recipe for my husband. he’s a bacon addict and would LOVE these!!

  • July 21, 2012 at 9:53 AM

    I can’t wait to make these! It is breakfast time and I am drooling. Thought I would share a fun place where I order my bacon from. They are in the Adirondacks and I have been buying bacon from them since my late hubby sent me a gift pack when we were dating (yes, most ladies like flowers, me, pork!). I see Rachel Ray talks about them also on her show. I get the irish bacon, applewood, hickory smoked and sometimes some canadian. I will let you know how the burgers turn out!

  • Wendi
    July 23, 2012 at 8:59 AM

    OMG!! I am drooling right now! I have been dying to try these since Cooks like a Champion posted them. YUM!!

  • July 24, 2012 at 10:32 PM

    Sooooo, bacon burger with more bacon on top?

    I. Love. It! 😀

  • July 25, 2012 at 11:44 AM

    Oh man, you ladies are killin’ me with this burger! Every time someone makes it, I thing to myself it should be on the menu for the week. Then it isn’t. What’s wrong with me?

  • July 27, 2012 at 12:08 AM

    On Fridays, I share my favorite food finds in a series called Food Fetish Friday – and I love this post so I’m featuring it as part of today’s roundup (with a link-back and attribution). I hope you have no objections and I’m happy to be following along with your creations…

  • November 2, 2012 at 9:48 AM

    This burger is seriously mouth-watering!!!! Oh, my. That bacon onion jam goodness! I think I know what we’re having for dinner ….

  • February 15, 2013 at 1:37 AM

    I just made these burgers tonight as a nice Valentines dinner for my guy and they are amazing! I was skeptical at first because I’m not huge on bacon and I really never liked balsamic vinegar but he likes both those things, so I decided to try them.

    For the buns I used your Soft Pretzels recipe.

  • Hyper
    June 16, 2013 at 7:15 PM

    Just made this recipe and it is awesome! Great adult burger. We topped off the bun with extra Dijon mustard. Used super soft buns and it just soaked up the balsamic topping. Delightful!!

  • Ali
    July 16, 2013 at 9:36 PM

    Just made these and they were to die for! Added a thin layer of fig spread…yum!!

    • taraliptak
      July 17, 2013 at 12:27 PM

      Amazing idea!!

  • M
    August 22, 2013 at 7:21 PM

    loved this so much. I made these into sliders instead and Oh!!!! Thanks for the amazing recipe.

    • taraliptak
      August 23, 2013 at 2:58 PM

      You’re welcome! Thanks for coming back to let me know how they turned out for you. These burgers really are something special!

  • September 21, 2013 at 3:00 PM

    My kind of burger!

  • dearlets
    November 21, 2013 at 10:05 PM

    Recently I was extremely low on money and debts were eating me from all sides! That was UNTIL I decided to make money.. on the internet! I went to surveymoneymaker dot net, and started filling in surveys for cash, and surely I’ve been far more able to pay my bills!! I’m so glad, I did this! – 7aze

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