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Test Kitchen Approved

Smoky Pork Burgers

Recipe By Savory Spice Test Kitchen

Prep Time

10 Minutes

Cooking Time

10 Minutes

Recipe By Savory Spice Test Kitchen

Smoky, sweet, and tangy flavors collide in this quick-to-assemble pork burger featuring one of our customer favorite spice blends -- Red Rocks Hickory Smoke Seasoning. Don't skip the quick-pickled carrot topping; it really makes the burger.

Serving Suggestions

If you want to skip the bun, serve the patties over a bed of greens. Spread the mayo over the patty then top with quick-pickled carrots.

Recipe Notes

*Ask your butcher for fresh ground pork shoulder for a hearty, sausage-like burger.

  • Vegetarian/vegan: See our recipe for Smoky Quinoa Burgers featuring quinoa and garbanzo beans instead of pork.
  • Gluten-free: Use gluten-free burger buns or serve the burgers over a bed of greens.


For quick-pickled carrots:

3 medium carrots, peeled and shredded

1.5 cups apple cider vinegar

¾ cups water

½ cups sugar

For burgers:

1 lbs. ground pork*

5 grilled shishito or serrano peppers, finely chopped

½ yellow onion, finely chopped

¼ cup chopped parsley

4 burger buns

Mayonnaise, to taste

Savory Spice ingredients in this recipe


For quick-pickled carrots: Place carrots in a heatproof bowl. In a medium pan, mix vinegar, water, sugar, and salt. Bring mixture to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Pour hot mixture over carrots. Let sit for 30 min. at room temperature or until cooled. Transfer to a large jar, cover, and refrigerate until chilled. Best served after 24 hours in the fridge.

For burgers: Mix pork, peppers, onion, parsley, and Red Rocks Hickory Smoke Seasoning together until well combined. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 min. or up to overnight. Preheat a well-oiled grill to medium-high (or heat a lightly oiled skillet on the stovetop over medium-high heat). Form meat mixture into 4, 1-inch patties. Grill patties (or sear in skillet) for 4 to 5 min. per side or until slightly charred and cooked to an internal temperature of 160 degrees. Remove patties from heat, cover with foil, and let rest for 5 min. Meanwhile, toast buns on grill for 2 to 3 min. (or in a 400-degree oven for 5 to 6 min.) until lightly browned. Spread buns with mayo, add patties, and top with a generous helping of quick-pickled carrots.