Sliders are tiny hamburgers that are served on mini sandwich buns. These little hot sandwiches first made their appearance a few years ago, and are a favorite among children. Sliders make a great appetizer or even a main dish if you give people four or five of them.
All-American Sliders are cute, fun to make, and fun to eat.
You can usually find mini buns, which are often called dollar buns, in the bakery section of most supermarkets. Some bakeries also carry them. Whole wheat buns typically have more texture and can stand up to the little burgers and all of the toppings better than white buns (but your mileage may vary).
You can put out the burgers, the sliced (and toasted) buns, and all of the toppings on a big platter and let everyone assemble their own masterpieces. Or assemble the sliders yourself and let everyone dig in.
Serve these little sliders with potato salad, a fruit salad, and soda or beer for a great summer meal.
- 1/2 cup bread crumbs (soft white)
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- Optional: 1/2 teaspoon marjoram
- 1 tablespoon ketchup
- 1 pound ground beef (85% lean)
- 10 to 12 slices American cheese
- For serving (optional):
- 10 to 12 mini buns
- tomatoes, sliced
In a medium bowl, combine the bread crumbs, milk, salt, pepper, marjoram, and ketchup; mix well with a spoon and let this mixture stand for 5 minutes.
Add the ground beef, crumbling it with your fingers as you add it; mix gently but thoroughly with your hands until combined.
Form the meat mixture into about 10 to 12 mini burgers. At this point, you can cover the burgers and chill them up to 24 hours.
When you are ready to eat, prepare and preheat a gas or charcoal grill. Grill the burgers on a small rack placed over the regular grill rack, over medium coals for 3 to 4 minutes per side, turning once, until the burgers are 160 degrees F.
Top each mini burger with the American cheese slices and cover the grill for 30 to 40 seconds to let the cheese melt. You can also fry these burgers in a hot pan over medium-high heat, turning once, until done to 160 degrees F.
Assemble the burgers with the buns, tomatoes, lettuce leaves, ketchup, mustard, and pickles.
Be sure that the little burgers are cooked to a final internal temperature of 160°F as measured with a reliable meat thermometer for food safety reasons. To take the most accurate temperature of the burgers, pick one up with some tongs and insert the thermometer into the side of the burger. Because these burgers contain a panade, or mixture of breadcrumbs and milk, they will be tender and juicy even when cooked well done.
Making it Vegetarian
There are several good vegetarian meat analogs that easily form into burger patties. Gimme Lean makes a couple of good options as does Boca. Choose which one you prefer, and substitute it for the ground beef in the recipe above.