Warm weather is finally upon us.  It’s about time!  Though our forecast still seems full of unpredictable possible T-storms, we are starting to have more and more opportunites to fire up the grill.  In the summer there are not many things I enjoy more than preparing a great meal on the grill with some sort of cold beverage in hand.  Since I try to keep our menus varied and interesting rather than making the same old same old every week, I’m always on the lookout for a good grilling recipe.  When I saw the concept for Marsala burgers, I was thrilled.  A dish that combines a favorite summer activity (grilling) with the flavors of one of my all-time favorite dishes (chicken Marsala) – brilliant!  I want to hug the person who dreamed these up…and this fall I will get to, when I finally meet my blogging friend Tara in person.  Wahoo!

In our home, these burgers were born of necessity one evening when we ended up having unexpected company for dinner.  I had burger patties in the freezer, but I wanted something a bit more exciting than a traditional burger that night.  Thankfully I had everything on hand to whip up the Marsala topping.  I baked up some burger buns, threw together a quick salad and we had an awesome meal that was greatly enjoyed by all.  I think this concept would work equally well with the patties from the chicken Parmesan burgers, and I may try that next time.  Whatever way you prefer, definitely give these a whirl next time you are looking to put a spin on a good old fashioned burger.


For the burgers:
1 lb. ground sirloin
2 tbsp. finely chopped yellow onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
1-2 dashes Worcestershire sauce

For the topping:
4 slices of bacon or pancetta, chopped
2 cups white or cremini mushrooms
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp. minced shallot
1 tbsp. tomato paste
1 ½ cups Marsala wine (sweet)
1 ½ tbsp. fresh lemon juice (1 small lemon)
3 tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into pieces, at room temperature

Sliced provolone cheese, for serving
Hamburger buns, for serving


  • 01

    Heat the grill to medium-high.  To prepare the burger patties, combine the ground sirloin, onion, garlic, salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce in a medium bowl.  Mix together until well combined.  Form into 4 equal sized patties.  Refrigerate until ready to use.

  • 02

    To make the topping, place a skillet over medium heat.  Add the pancetta to the pan; sauté, stirring occasionally until pancetta is brown and crisp, about 4 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the pancetta to a paper-towel lined plate. Add mushrooms and increase heat to medium-high; sauté, stirring occasionally and scraping pan bottom, until liquid released by mushrooms evaporates and mushrooms begin to brown, about 8 minutes. Add garlic and shallot; sauté for 1 minute.

  • 03

    Return the cooked pancetta to the pan and add the tomato paste. Stir while sautéing, until tomato paste begins to brown, about 1 minute. Off heat, add Marsala; return pan to high heat and simmer vigorously, scraping browned bits from pan bottom until sauce is slightly syrupy and reduced to about 1 ¼ cups, about 5 minutes.  Stir in the lemon juice.  Whisk in the butter until completely melted.  Keep the sauce warm over low heat while grilling the burgers.

  • 04

    Grill the burgers, 3-5 minutes per side, until cooked through and no longer pink (160˚ F on an instant read thermometer).  Place a slice of provolone on top of each patty during the last few minutes of cooking.  Toast the burger buns on the grill until light golden.  Assemble the burgers on the buns and spoon the Marsala topping over the patties.  Serve immediately.


  • There are enough links in this post to keep me hoppin’ for a while. We’ve been frozen meat patties from Costco kind of people FOREVER. I think it’s funny that the idea of making my own patti and freezing it, is a new concept to me.

  • I wish I could grill for dinner! These sound fantastic!

  • This looks so good! I’ve like Chicken Marsala, but never would have thought to have a burger rendition! Thanks for sharing

  • These sound like a wonderful alternative to your standar burger!!

  • Amazing! I spent the night dreaming about burgers and wake up to find this one! The addition of the provolone looks especially delicious. Can’t wait to give this one a shot!

  • I have been craving nothing but a big, juicy burger for this whole week and this is tempting me like crazy! It looks delicious, and I love the creative Marsala topping.

  • Liz

    And when will you be over tonight to cook for me?

  • With the warm summer weather I have been craving a good homemade hamburger too. These look fantastic!

  • My husband LOVES burgers and mushrooms. This sounds like a fantastic way to change up our standard burgers!! Just in time to make our weekly grocery list too.

  • Oh boy! I do love me a good burger. You just kicked it up to the next level! Well done, dear! :)

  • Imagine that last sentence in my best Katherine Hepburn impersonation :)

  • these look absolutely amazing! i’m putting them on my summer list for sure! thanks!

  • Karen

    My husband thanks you. We were going to have leftovers tonight but when I saw this I had to try these out. I only had ground turkey on hand, but I thought it still came out pretty tasty. Thanks!

  • Yum! What a great recipe to ring in Spring!

  • These look awesome! Love this idea.

  • Great idea! I bet the marsala topping would be awesome with chicken burgers!

  • While the burger itself definitely takes center stage, I couldn’t help but notice the BUN. Oh holy batman buns… that looks like the best hamburger bun ever! I will definitely be making this for my man… he’ll love this!

  • My husband loves mushroom anything so I need to make these soon! Thanks for another great recipe Annie!

  • I have put everything on a burger but never thought of this. Love the idea and will definitely try this one.

  • Annie

    You’ll never buy buns again! Enjoy :) (PS – they freeze well.)

  • These burgers look amazing! I love marsala wine and I can only imagine how amazing it would be one hamburgers. Yum!

  • Kelsey

    These look incredible. What a delicious idea!

  • These burgers are ah-mazing! Added caramelized onions but what burger doesn’t taste great with mushrooms and onions. Thanks!

  • Annie

    Excellent idea – everything is better with caramelized onions! Glad you enjoyed them :)

  • Pam

    Oh boy these sound wonderful. Certainly involves a tad more work than just throwing some meat on a grill and adding sauteed mushrooms in garlic as we do… But it sure looks worth it. Great idea to transfer the chicken dish flavoring over to a burger version.

  • Annie thank you so much for sharing this recipe! I absolutely love Chicken Marsala and I am always looking for other ways to use Marsala wine-I am absolutely making these real soon!

  • On the menu for this weekend. I cant wait! I’ve never been this excited to make a burger! :)

  • Mouth is watering! This recipe made my Five to Try list for the week and I can already guess that it will be a crowd pleaser in my house!

  • With summer fast approaching, this will be a winner…I just know it. We live on a lake and summer is all about grilling out with friends and family. I’ll be the hit of the summer with this awesome burger recipe!

  • Janel

    These burgers are delicious! I made it with ground turkey but next time I will spurge and make it with fround sirlion. I can’t wait to make chicken marsala now with same recipe. By far the BEST marsala I have had! Thanks Annie!

  • Dawn B.

    I made this recipe last night for dinner and OMG it was yummy. I can’t tell you how the topping changed a hamburger into something gourmetish.