Employee Life

Grill better burgers with natural gas

Susan Simpson

Paula Lewis is such a fan of natural gas grilling that she had an external fuel line installed when building her house.

The grill connects right to the home’s natural gas supply so she doesn’t have to bother with propane tank refills.

“I grill three to four times each week, even in the winter months,” said Lewis, lead strategy analyst for Williams. “It’s super easy, results in fewer dishes to clean and keeps my kitchen cooler than cooking inside.”

Lewis isn’t alone. Gas grilling is one of the most popular forms of outdoor cooking. Natural gas is an affordable and reliable energy source.

In summer, especially, hamburgers are a top item to grill. They may seem basic but perfecting them does take some practice.

Here are some tips from the American Gas Association:

  • Aim for burgers that are ¾ of an inch wide. That way they won’t dry out but will still get cooked on the inside.
  • Heat your grill to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • How done is done? That depends on your preference, but here are some guidelines for beef burgers. Make sure to use a grill thermometer to check interior temps.
    • Well done: Grill for 3 minutes, flip and grill for another 7 for an internal temp of 165 and up.
    • Medium well: Grill for 3 minutes, flip and grill for 6 more minutes for an internal temp of 150 to 165 F.
    • Medium: Grill for 3 minutes, flip, grill for 5 more minutes for an internal temp of 135 to 150 F.
    • Medium rare: Grill for 3 minutes, flip and grill for 4 more minutes for an internal temp of 130 to 135 F.

For a change of pace, you might also want to grill some meat-free burgers. Portobello mushrooms are a yummy vegan substitute and take only a few minutes to grill. Alternately, there are several plant-based patties available in grocery stores that look and cook just like ground beef.

No matter your burger preference, they are a summer classic with much versatility.

Fun fact: The word hamburger derives from the German town of Hamburg, known for exporting high quality beef.