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Bison Burgers: Colorado Proud's Recipe of the Month for July


Last updated 7/12/2022 at 2:37pm | View PDF

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It's summertime and definitely time to dust off the grill, if you haven't already. Colorado has a wide variety of products to choose from to make your next grill out perfect, but if you want to up your game, try these delicious bison burgers to wow your guests. Bison can be found from producers throughout Colorado and is a healthy, lean, nutrient-rich red meat endorsed by the American Heart Association.

The bison industry has been slowly growing over the past decade, with herds once more grazing the prairies. Our national mammal, bison provide far more meat than other herd animals - up to 2,000 pounds on an average male.

Bison meat can be processed as whole cuts, ground, or strips, and is delicious no matter how you cook it. This month's recipe uses a tried and true burger with multiple variations to keep it fresh and fun. Try it as a Green Chile Bison Burger topped with pepperjack cheese and green chiles, or a BBQ version with BBQ pulled pork, cooked bacon, tomato jam, and BBQ sauce as toppers. Any way you try it, you're sure to find a combination that pleases the palate.

Chef Jason says,"Bison is one of my favorite proteins, it's lean, power packed, and loaded with iron, zinc, vitamins and omega-3 fats. This recipe takes bison on a trip around Colorado with some fun flavor variations. Happy cooking!"

Bison Burgers

Chef Jason K. Morse, C.E.C., 5280 Culinary, LLC and Ace Hardware Grill Expert

Yield: 4 burgers

Prep time: 10 Minutes

Cook time: 15-20 Minutes


• 1 lb of ground bison

• Seasoning to taste from Rub-A-Dub, 5280 Culinary

• 4 slices of smoked cheddar cheese

• 6 slices of cooked applewood bacon

• 4 brioche or kaiser buns

• Garnish: lettuce, tomato, onion, sweet pickles

Preparation Directions:

1. Wash all tools prior to use

2. Clean and sanitize all cutting boards and prep surfaces prior to use

3. Read all manufacturer's instructions before using grills, ranges, ovens and any cooking tools

Grilling Tips:

• Always start with clean and brushed grill grates

• Preheat grill to HIGH temp of 450˚F – 500˚F degrees

• Cast iron or stainless steel grates are perfect for grilling and add a nice crust

• Use a flat burger patty, or use a burger press to create a flat patty

• Always sear the burgers on High

• Utilize the upper shelf to keep it hot and indirect when finishing the burger

• Avoid pressing the burger, this causes flare ups and a less juicy burger

• Check meat temperature from the side of the patty

• Always cool burgers in an open container in the fridge, once cooled to 40 degrees or below, they are safe to cover or transfer to a zipper bag for storage

• Shelf life for leftover burgers is 2 days

• Properly reheat the leftover burger to 150 degrees or higher

• Only reheat burgers once and don't freeze already grilled burgers

Cooking Directions:

1. Heat your gas grill to high (approx. 450˚F – 500˚F degrees)

2. Divide the mixture into 4 balls and patty them out, use a press if available

3. Season both sides to taste with Rub-A-Dub

4. If using a skillet or griddle, add 1 tbsp of oil and heat oil before adding the burgers

5. Sear the burgers for 3-4 minutes per side and cook burgers to desired temperature

6. While the burgers are finishing, heat up the bacon and place on top of the burger

7. Toast the buns and hold

8. Place a slice of cheese on top of the bacon and allow to melt about 50%

9. Serve with some shredded lettuce, sliced onion, sliced tomato and sweet pickles


Colorado Bison Burger Variations:

• Green Chile Bison Burger

o Top with green Pueblo chiles (like these from Musso Farms) then melt pepperjack cheese on top. Add your favorite garnishes, like lettuce, tomato and onion.

• Colorado BBQ Bison Burger

o Top with BBQ pulled pork, cooked bacon, tomato jam (like the one from Colorado Mountain Jam), and BBQ sauce (pick your favorite!). Add your favorite garnishes, like lettuce, tomato and onion.

Complement your burger and beat the heat with a cold, refreshing Colorado Native beer from Golden, Colorado. Colorado Native Beers are found only in Colorado and made with only Colorado hops, grains, water, and yeast.

If you are searching for an alcohol-free beverage to complement this recipe, try one of the Rocky Mountain Sodas, like the Evergreen Elderberry or Pikes Peak Prickly Pear.

Visit for a complete list of recipes.


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