Start with a generic 1/3rd lb patty of ground beef, either frozen or fresh.

Normally I follow the advice from How do you grill a perfect burger?, however, I want to make many. How can I cook and store the extra patties for lunch the next day or more? Given that at work, I only have a microwave to reheat the meaty goodness.

Step 1. Cook beef patty
Step 2. ???
Step 3. Profit

2 Answers 2


I think a microwaved, reheated burger is probably not going to compare favorably to a freshly-cooked burger. With that said, I think the main thing for the pre-cooking is that it would need to be start off a little undercooked, otherwise the heating process is going to result in it being overcooked (since you're saying you're looking for some pink in the middle).

Other than that, I think the key is more in how you microwave it. Obviously, you want it to cook evenly. I'm assuming you're starting from refrigerator-cold. If you start from frozen it is going to have a lot more trouble heating evenly. Also, it might go without saying, but I'd cook the meat on its own (no bun or condiments).

Most microwaves tend to have hot spots in certain areas. There is a pretty interesting (IMO) blog post that demonstrates this using papadam (those crispy lentil crackers you get at many Indian restaurants). The ones tested in that experiment, seemed to mostly be good directly in the center of the tray, so that might be the best placement. If you want to be really super-scientific about it, you can try to replicate that method and figure out how to arrange your food in your microwave.

But if you don't have any papadam handy and you don't know what your office microwave is doing, you may want to find a supposedly-microwave-safe plate that still tends to get hot in the microwave and heat your burger on that. I think the plate is going to transfer heat more evenly to the burger than the microwave would. (On the other hand, I sometimes question whether dishes that get really super hot in the microwave are, indeed, as microwave-safe as they claim to be, so use caution....) Using a real plate, though, instead of a paper plate should help with the evenness of the heating.

I'd also suggest cooking it in short bursts (15s at a time) and letting it rest in between, or cooking it on low if your microwave has power settings (which just does the same intermittent power thing anyway).

  • I don't actually need them to be pink in the middle. In my experience, it usually gets dried out in the microwave, which I'm guessing is due to the way a microwave actually "cooks".
    – Eris
    Aug 31, 2015 at 19:46
  • Drying out is mostly a function of over cooking. 15s bursts should avoid that, checking in between
    – NadjaCS
    Sep 4, 2015 at 19:29

Form the patties and place in a nonstick pan. Once you have got all your patties in the pan (make sure they are thin) cook all the way them at 250F in the oven (make sure you watch them). Let them cool then place them in Ziploc bags. Freeze them.

The night before work place them in bottom fridge to start thawing. On your way to work it will be still frozen (pack your lunch with ice packs). At lunchtime, place them in microwave for about a minute, then turn, cook another minute, and they'll be done:-)

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