Be bold and incorporate beer to enhance the flavor of these already rich bison burgers. Just don’t bother with light beers as their flavor won’t hold up to cooking. Stick with the stronger, darker varieties. 


  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup dark beer plus an additional 1/3 cup
  • 1 tsp whole-grain Dijon mustard
  • 1 lb ground bison
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 4 whole-grain buns, preferably toasted
  • 1/4 cup barbecue sauce
  • 1 cup sliced roasted red pepper
  • 2 cups baby spinach


  1. Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in brown sugar and a couple of pinches each of salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add 1⁄2 cup beer, raise heat to medium, and cook until little beer remains. Stir in mustard.
  2. Preheat grill to medium-high. In a large bowl, gently mix together bison, 1⁄3 cup beer, garlic, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, paprika, and salt and pepper to taste. Form into 4 patties. Grill for 5 minutes on each side or until cooked through.
  3. Serve burgers on buns and topped with barbecue sauce, caramelized onion, roasted red pepper, and spinach.
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