Grilled Lamb Burger with Harissa Aioli 

Prep Time

10 min

Cook Time

10 MIN

Total Time

20 MIN



plated grilled lamb burger with lettuce, onion, tomato


  • 1 pound ground American lamb (85/15% fat content)
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon granulated onion
  • Kosher salt
  • Pepper
  • Harissa aioli (see recipe below)

Harissa aioli

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon harissa, (or more if you want it spicier)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

Toppings / condiments    

  • Grilled onions
  • 1 heirloom tomato, (sliced)
  • Butter lettuce


Make the aioli by stirring together the mayonnaise with the harissa, lemon zest and smoked paprika.

Make the lamb burger patties by seasoning the ground lamb with smoked paprika, granulated garlic, onion, salt and pepper in a bowl. Very gently incorporate the seasonings ingredients without pressing too firmly or the burgers can become tough. Divide and portion out for the desired burger size and gently form the patties.

Prepare the grill and preheat for medium-high heat grilling with a two-zone setup (see note). Optionally add some wood chips (I prefer apple or cherry wood) to the side for some extra smoke if desired.

Season the patties on the outside with a little more kosher salt and pepper.

Grill the burgers for 2 to 3 minutes per side over the direct heat, then transfer to the cooler side of the grill and close the lid. Continue to cook until the desired internal temperature is reached. 125°-130° F for medium-rare and 130-135° f for medium **. Remove from the grill and rest for 3 to 5 minutes.

Lightly toast the buns while the patties rest.

Assemble the burgers by spreading aioli on each of the buns, then lettuce (to keep buns from getting soggy), lamb burger patty, tomatoes and then grilled onions and another slice of lettuce. Serve immediately.


Recipe makes 4 - 4 oz burgers or 2 - 8 oz burgers.

** The USDA recommends that ground lamb be cooked to an internal temperature of 160° F.

* A two-zone grilling setup is with a hot side and a cooler side. For a charcoal grill, place the coals on one side of the grill which will be the hot side. For a gas grill, light half of the burners which will be the hot side.

If you are experiencing flare-ups while searing the burgers, move the patties to the cooler (indirect) side of the grill.

raw lamb burgers, raw onion, tomato
lamb burgers on the grill
thermometer timer illustration
Visit our Lamb Cooking Time & Temperature page for recipe inspiration and tips on preparing the perfect lamb.

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