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Peppers, sauce, cheese all mixed into meat before grilling

To bump up the heat in Chipotle Barbecue Cheeseburgers, add a jalapeno to the processor at the same time as the chipotles. (Associated Press)
To bump up the heat in Chipotle Barbecue Cheeseburgers, add a jalapeno to the processor at the same time as the chipotles. (Associated Press)
J.M. Hirsch

No condiments needed for this high-flavor barbecue-style cheeseburger; they are built right in.

For ease – and let’s face it, awesome taste – I took your basic beef burger and mixed in pureed chipotles in adobo sauce, a healthy splash of barbecue sauce (use your favorite brand) and some garlic. But why stop there? I also stuffed the burger with a mix of cheddar cheese and chopped black olives.

To round it out, I mixed together a simple bell pepper slaw to form a creamy-crispy bed for the burger. Of course, you can keep it simple by substituting whichever prepared slaw you prefer.

This recipe also welcomes playing. To jack up the heat, up the chipotles. You also could add some smoked paprika and garlic powder. And there would be nothing wrong with adding yet more cheese to the top.

Chipotle Barbecue Cheeseburger

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1 tablespoon mustard powder

1 tablespoon honey

1 teaspoon cider vinegar

1 red bell pepper, cored and thinly sliced

1 green bell pepper, cored and thinly sliced

1 yellow bell pepper, cored and thinly sliced

Salt and ground black pepper

2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

1/4 cup prepared barbecue sauce

2 cloves garlic

1 pound 85 percent lean ground beef

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

1/4 cup finely chopped black olives

4 large potato buns, toasted

1 large tomato, thickly sliced

In a medium bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, mustard powder, honey and vinegar. Add all 3 peppers, then toss to coat well. Season with salt and pepper, then set aside.

Heat a grill or grill pan to medium-high.

In a blender or food processor, combine the chipotle peppers, barbecue sauce and garlic. Puree until smooth. Transfer to a large bowl. Add the ground beef, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper, then mix well.

Divide the ground beef mixture into quarters. One at a time, form each quarter into a cup in the palm of your hand. Add 1/4 cup of the cheese and a sprinkling of the black olives to the center of each cup, then push the beef over it to completely cover the cheese. Carefully form the beef into a patty.

Coat the grill grates with oil. Grill the burgers for 7 to 8 minutes for medium-well, or until desired doneness.

Top the bottom half of each potato bun with some of the pepper slaw, then a burger, then a slice of tomato.

Yield: 4 servings

Approximate nutrition per serving: 708 calories, 37 grams fat (14 grams saturated, 47 percent fat calories), 38 grams protein, 57 grams carbohydrate, 111 milligrams cholesterol, 4 grams dietary fiber, 1,047 milligrams sodium.

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