How to Make Your Favorite Fast Food Burgers at Home Slideshow

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If they can make a billion, you can make one

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So how do our favorite fast food restaurants do it day after day, night after night? The cheap, consistent product might be what we are drawn to the most, but after 1 billion served, maybe we’ve grown to appreciate the actual taste of those quick-service burgers. Nostalgia can play an important role in how we taste our food, so whether you just want that taste of something past or you genuinely think that McDonald’s makes the best hamburger in the world, we have the recipes for you.

How to Make Your Favorite Fast Food Burgers at Home

Shutterstock / TheCamdenStreet Design 

So how do our favorite fast food restaurants do it day after day, night after night? The cheap, consistent product might be what we are drawn to the most, but after 1 billion served, maybe we’ve grown to appreciate the actual taste of those quick-service burgers. Nostalgia can play an important role in how we taste our food, so whether you just want that taste of something past or you genuinely think that McDonald’s makes the best hamburger in the world, we have the recipes for you.

Carl's Jr. Western Bacon Cheeseburger

Carl’s Jr., also known as Hardee’s in some states, has quite the following, with over 32 million Western Bacon Cheeseburgers sold in 2011. Here’s a little trivia for you: Did you know that the WBCB (yes, it has a nickname) comes in three sizes (single, double, and the six-dollar version)?  

Carl's Jr. Western Bacon Cheeseburger: Ingredients Roll Call

Photo Modified: Flickr / Steven Depolo / CC BY 4.0

That barbecue flavor that comes through in the WBCB is a subtle nod to Carl’s Jr.’s roots when it was still named, Carl’s Drive-In Barbeque, which opened in the 1940s in Anaheim, California. The barbecue sauce is important; however, the key to this unique burger is the bacon, cooked crisp and crisscrossed so that every bite contains a mouthful.

Carl's Jr. Western Bacon Cheeseburger: Our Recipe

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So how do you make this famous burger at home? A half-pound of Angus beef, pressed to about a half inch; enough bacon to weave across the top; and plenty of tangy barbecue sauce.

For our Western Bacon Cheeseburger recipe, click here.

Denny’s Bacon Slam

The expression “everything and the kitchen sink” really applies here. This burger is piled high with bacon, hash browns, an egg, and cheese, which explains why there are more than 1,000 calories in this hefty burger.

Denny’s Bacon Slam: Ingredients Roll Call

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What sets this burger apart from the crowd are those crispy crunchy hash browns and the slice of thick-cut bacon. If you don’t care for the usual American cheese, just swap it out with Cheddar. It won’t be an exact copy, but who cares!

Denny’s Bacon Slam: Our Recipe

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What’s in a name? Not much, but the Bacon Slam burger sure is catchy. It also overflows with meat, hash browns, bacon, egg, and cheese — a winning (albeit artery-clogging) combination.
For our Denny’s Bacon Slam recipe, click here.

McDonald’s Big Mac

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Since the 1960s, the Big Mac has satisfied the burger needs of McDonald’s customers with its half a pound of meat. This burger is not for the faint of heart (literally). It contains over 500 calories and 50 percent of your daily recommended fat intake, so it might be OK as a once-in-a-while thing, but we wouldn’t recommend adding this to your regular diet.

McDonald’s Big Mac: Ingredients Roll Call:

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So, what makes this burger so special? The Big Mac is possibly one of the most identifiable fast food burgers, with a quarter pound of meat divided between two patties stacked high with an extra half a bun snuck in the middle. Don’t forget the special Big Mac sauce to make your copycat taste just like the original. 

McDonald’s Big Mac: Our Recipe

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The key to recreating the Big Mac is the sauce. Some say it’s simply Thousand Island, but the clever folks at McDonald's deserve much more credit for their masterpiece. The secret ingredient? Mustard. Simple yellow mustard. Add that and a pinch of sugar to a Thousand Island-style sauce and you’ll be surprised how closely it resembles the real deal.
For our McDonald’s Big Mac Recipe, click here.

White Castle Slider

Long before Harold and Kumar, there was White Castle. White Castle opened in the 1920s in Wichita, Kansas, during the rise of the great fast food chains, and they’ve been thrilling customers with their mini burgers ever since. Time magazine even labeled this slider the most influential burger of all time in 2014. Great things do come in small packages.

White Castle Slider: Ingredients Roll Call

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So what makes this burger so special? That soft mini bun perfectly houses the mini patty inside, but the flavor of the burger comes from the perfect pickle-to-burger ratio and the finely chopped onions that sneak a hint of sweetness into the two-bite sandwich.

White Castle Slider: Our Recipe

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We're certainly not the first to try to replicate the White Castle slider recipe, but we think we've come pretty close — closer than others — to nailing it.
For our White Castle Slider recipe, click here.