Sometimes when you get home late from work, you just don’t feel like prepping a huge meal. But, maybe you’d still rather cook something than order in. Frozen foods, specifically frozen hamburger patties (or veggie or turkey burgers) make for a quick meal with minimal preparation. And, instead of frying them on the grill, you can deep-fry them, which will give them a crispy taste in half the time.
Frozen hamburger patties absolutely can be deep fried. But you must have the right tools and take precautions, as deep frying can be dangerous.
Can You Deep Fry Frozen Hamburger Patties?
If you’re wondering whether you can deep fry hamburger patties, the answer is yes. That said, it’s important that you read the directions on both your food packaging and your deep fryer. Some patties may be made with ingredients that would cause the patty to fall apart if you deep fry it.
Why Deep Fry Frozen Hamburger Patties?
Deep frying is a process in which you heat oil to a peak temperature and cook the food submerged in the oil, so the outside is crispy and the inside is cooked to perfection. Food that is deep-fried contains a lot of fat, making it generally unhealthy, though certain oils may be healthier than others. Some foods that are commonly deep-fried are french fries, chicken tenders and onion rings.
Compared to other methods for cooking frozen patties, deep-frying is much quicker, and the meat stays together much better than other methods. This may be a better choice than microwaving, which gives the meat a soggy texture. Deep frying is also preferable to baking the patty, which would take much longer to do.
What You Need to Deep Fry a Burger Patty
To deep fry a burger, you will, of course, need a deep fryer kitchen appliance. You can buy these at a kitchen store, a big box store like Walmart or online. While it’s possible to fry in a deep pan, such as a wok, it’s much easier and safer to do it in a deep fryer that’s designed for it.
You will also need oil. Different oils have different smoking temperatures, so keep that in mind. And also avoid using oils considered unhealthy ‒ including, but not limited to ‒ vegetable oils like sunflower oil and corn oil. Olive oil and peanut oil are often the healthier options.
How to Deep Fry Burgers
If you decide that deep frying a frozen burger patty is the way you want to go about cooking it, then it’s really important to follow the directions on the packaging and also on your deep fryer. While the directions will differ depending on what you’re cooking and what you’re cooking it in, in general, the process is more or less the same.
First, put the oil in the deep fryer. A standard deep fryer holds 3 liters of oil, so you should have 2.5 liters minimum. The oil needs to get to between 325 degrees to 400 degrees Fahrenheit to deep fry. For one Tyson chicken patty, for example, the oil needs to be at 350 degrees. Most deep fryers have a temperature control.
Next, place the frozen patty in the frying basket. Do not, under any circumstances, add the food directly into the oil, because this can make it splatter everywhere, which could cause burns. The patty should be placed in the basket and then lowered into the oil slowly. A Tyson chicken patty must cook for 3 to 3 1/2 minutes, which is the general standard for frozen patties. But, again, check the packaging for more specific information.
How to Deep Fry a Burger Without a Deep Fryer
It’s possible to deep fry frozen burger patties even without a deep fryer. To do this, you need a pot or pan that is at least 5 inches deep, but the deeper, the better. Cast iron Dutch ovens are a good choice.
Next, add the oil to the pot. Use about 4 to 6 cups of oil, and make sure there is plenty of room between the surface of the oil and the top of the pan or pot. Put the heat on medium and let the oil heat. Use a thermometer to check the temperature before adding the food. When it’s ready, lower the patty in using a tool called a spider or tongs. Lower the patty slowly, and wait until it’s golden brown.
When the Patty Finishes Cooking
Whether you’re using a deep fryer or a large pot to deep fry your frozen patty, you can take it out the same way. First, line a cooling rack or plate with a paper towel. Using a spider, a slotted spoon or tongs (never your bare hands), lift the patty and place it on the cooling rack or plate.
In the meantime, shut off the deep fryer and unplug it, or take your pan off the heat. Let the oil cool. When it’s finally cool, don’t pour it down the drain as it can clog your pipes. Instead, save it in a container and use it another time or dispose of it in a can. Some recycling centers will accept used cooking oil.
Deep fryers can be very dangerous if not used properly. Avoid burning accidents by clearing away items in your kitchen and following directions carefully. Consider using a thermometer to check that the meat is fully cooked.
Hana LaRock is a freelance content writer from New York, currently living in Mexico. When she's not writing, she enjoys traveling, reading, scrapbooking, and cooking new recipes as well as recipes from places that she has traveled. Visit her website at www.hanalarockwriting.com.