Fire up the grill and get ready to devour this spicy southwest burger with chipotle mayo, topped with cooling guacamole and fresh pico de gallo. The juicy burger patty is mixed with green chiles, crushed tortilla chips, cilantro, and taco seasonings for a spicy, smokey, and bold flavored Tex-Mex burger.
For an ideal summer day outdoors, keep the grill hot to cook my secret ingredient burger next, and wash it all down with a classic frozen margarita.
What is a Southwest Burger?
Not your typical grilled burger recipe! This is our take on a taco burger with fun toppings like pico de gallo, guacamole, and a creamy chipotle sauce. It's a spicy burger bursting with smokey flavor from spices, chiles, and the char of the grill.
Why You Will Love this Recipe
- Unique burger - perfect for those who want something different than a traditional hamburger. Grilling season just got more creative.
- Calling all spice lovers - this spicy taco burger is full of Tex-Mex flavor and heat.
- Flavorful sauce and seasoning will have your taste buds dancing.
- Quick and easy - use premade guacamole and pico de gallo to get this cheeseburger on your table in under 30 minutes.
- Ground beef
- Guacamole: homemade or store-bought
- Pico de Gallo: homemade or store-bought
- Tortilla chips: crushed chips are used in place of breadcrumbs to give this burger more of a taco flavor.
- Cilantro: adds a bright pop of flavor to this Mexican burger.
- Garlic: minced or garlic powder
- Green chiles: use hot or mild canned green chiles based on your spice preference.
- Cheese: cheddar or pepper jack cheese
- Spices: chili powder, cumin and smoked paprika
- Chipotle Mayo recipe: mayonnaise, chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, lime juice, and salt. (full recipe in link)
How to Make a Southwest Burger
This unique burger recipe comes together in under 30 minutes with a few simple steps. We prefer to make a grilled southwest burger for the added char and smokey flavor, but you can also cook it on a stovetop or griddle.
Step 1: Make the chipotle mayo sauce using a small food processor and set aside. In a large bowl, add ground beef, egg, crushed tortilla chips, diced green chiles, spices, and fresh cilantro.
Step 2: Using your hands, mix the ingredients together until well combined.
Step 3: Form the ground beef mixture into 3 to 4 patties. We like large burgers, so we get 3 burger patties from 1 pound of meat.
Step 4: Preheat an outdoor grill or griddle to approximately 400°F. Place burgers on the grill and cook covered on medium high heat. Cook for 3-5 minutes on each side depending on the thickness. The internal temperature of the burger should reach 160°F.
Step 5: To make a cheeseburger, add a slice of cheese to the burger patty in the last minute of cooking. Cover the grill to help it melt. Toast buns at this time as well. For perfectly juicy burgers, let them rest for 5 minutes on a rack so moisture doesn't collect underneath them.
After resting, it's time to assemble the southwest burger. Start by spreading chipotle mayo on the bottom bun. Next, place the burger patty on the bun and top it with guacamole and pico de gallo. Add more mayo to the top bun, if desired, and dig in.
- Grill a jalapeno pepper and a white or red onion for additional southwest burger toppings.
- Use a different meat, such as ground turkey, to make these Mexican burgers.
- For even more heat, add a few dashes of hot sauce or cayenne pepper to the patty mixture.
- Instead of guacamole, you can top the burger with avocado slices instead.
To make pico de gallo, add chopped tomato, diced onion, and diced serrano peppers to a bowl with a sprinkle of salt, fresh lime juice, and chopped cilantro. Stir until combined.
To make my favorite, quick 4-ingredient guacamole add an avocado, chunky salsa, fresh lime juice, and garlic salt to a bowl. Using the back of a fork or potato masher, crush and stir the ingredients together until well combined.
Yes, ground beef may still be pink after it has been safely cooked. Just make sure it has been cooked to an internal temperature of 160°F.
Other than traditional French fries, you can serve this burger with tortilla chips, green beans, or Spanish rice. Look at our roundup of delicious side dishes for sandwiches for even more ideas!
Once the patty is no longer hot and has come to room temperature, wrap it in plastic wrap or put in an airtight container to store in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
Leftover patties freeze well! To freeze burger patties, wrap them carefully in plastic wrap to avoid air from reaching the meat and place in a freezer safe container. Freeze for up to 4 months.
If frozen, allow patty to thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Reheat the patty on a microwave safe plate for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
Leftover burger toppings can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Hungry for More?
If you try this recipe or any recipe from Happy Honey Kitchen, please rate the recipe and leave a comment below! Enjoy!
Southwest Burger with Chipotle Mayo
- small food processor for chipotle mayo
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup tortilla chips crushed
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro chopped
- 4 ounce diced green chiles drained
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon salt
Southwest Burger Toppings
- 1 cup guacamole divided
- 1 cup pico de gallo divided
- 4 slices cheese cheddar or pepper jack
- 4 hamburger buns
- Chipotle Mayo Sauce recipe linked in post and notes
- Make the chipotle mayo sauce and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, add ground beef, egg, crushed tortilla chips, diced green chilis, cilantro, and spices. Using your hands, mix ingredients together until well combined. Form ground beef mixture into 3 to 4 round patties.
- Preheat the grill or griddle to approximately 400°F. Place burgers on the grill and cook covered on medium high heat. Cook for 3-5 minutes on each side depending on the thickness. The internal temperature of the burger should reach 160°F.
- To make a cheeseburger, add a slice of cheese to the patty in the last minute of cooking. Cover the grill to help it melt. Take burgers off the grill and let them rest for 5 minutes.
- To assemble: Spread chipotle mayo on the bottom bun. Place burger patty on the bun and top it with guacamole and pico de gallo. Add more mayo to the top bun, if desired.
- Get the recipe for Chipotle Mayo Sauce
- Nutrition facts are calculated without chipotle mayo sauce.
- For thin burger patties you may want to leave the grill lid open while cooking.
- The internal temperature of the burger should reach 160°F.
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