Taste test: Frozen hamburgers

Serving size 1 patty 1 patty 1 patty 1 patty
Calories 580 420 380 310
Fat/Fiber 45g / 0g 35g / 0g 31g / 0g 26g / 0g
Sugars/Sodium 0g / 150mg 0g / 85mg 0g / 75mg 0g / 390mg
Carbs/Protein 0g / 39g 0g / 25g 0g / 26g 0g / 19g


Burgers that go directly from the freezer to the grill are a staple in our household during the summer. Whether for lunch, dinner or an impromptu party when friends drop anchor, burgers make a great quick-fix meal. We found 10 brands of frozen burgers at grocery stores and grilled all of them outside, following the package directions. We served them on traditional white buns with no fixings. Our favorite was a big, juicy burger that covered the entire bun. But our panelists agreed any of the top picks would fit their grilling needs this Memorial Day weekend or any of the summer days ahead. Kathy Saunders, Times correspondent

Product/Score

(out of 100)
Fire Side

Gourmet Angus Steak Burgers 65
Bubba Burger 62Red Hat Ranch Angus Burgers 62Flanders

47
Judges'

comments
Size made this burger especially appealing. Each patty was a half-pound of Angus beef. The burgers didn't shrink on the grill as some of the others did, and they had a homemade taste. "This is plump with a great chewy texture," said one judge. Another liked the meaty flavor and said: "Bring on the fireworks."These burgers have been a favorite in our family for years. Judges said they were just the right thickness and had a nice, tender center. They also had a seasoned flavor. One panelist detected a smoky taste. "This reminds me a bit of a Wendy's burger," said one judge. "I'm craving some tater tots on the side."Resembling homemade burgers, these cooked into thick, juicy patties with a bold, meaty flavor. "It has the proper meat taste and produced nice drippings," said one panelist. Another judge liked the chewy texture and the crusty edges from the grill.Five years ago, when Taster's Choice judges first sampled freezer-to-grill burgers, panelists put these on their list of favorites. They liked the fast-food-like appearance and flavor. The texture was slightly limp, but in a good way. "They remind me of the grade-school cafeteria burgers, which I liked," said one judge. "They have a thorough, consistent density."
Would

they buy?
Three of the four

judges said yes.
Two of the four judges said yes.Three of the four

judges said yes.
Two of the four judges said yes.
Shopping information$7.68 for a 32-ounce box of four 1/2-pound burgers from Walmart.$9.48 for a 32-ounce box of six 1/3-pound burgers from Walmart.$8.99 for a 32-ounce box of six 1/3-pound burgers from Publix.$7.98 for a 5-pound box of 20 burgers from Walmart.


Also Sampled: Philly Gourmet ($7.99 for a 32-ounce box from Publix, 56 points); Northern Plains ($5.58 for a 32-ounce box from Target, 47 points); Great Value ($8.98 for a 48-ounce box from Walmart, 28 points); Coleman Natural ($9.29 for a 32-ounce box from Publix, 45 points); Winn-Dixie ($7.99 for a 32-ounce box, 27 points); Laura's Lean Beef ($9.49 for a 32-ounce box from Target, 22 points).

Panelists: Nan Jensen, registered dietitian; Jim Yockey, aesthetician at Anu You Institute in St. Petersburg; John Hehn, foodie and owner of All Brite Lighting & Power Design Inc.; Jeff Jensen, public information officer for the city of Treasure Island. All foods were

tasted blind.

Send suggestions for product testing to: Taste section, St. Petersburg Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731 or

e-mail them to jkeeler@sptimes.com. Please put TEST SUGGESTION in the subject line..

Taste test: Frozen hamburgers 05/24/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, May 24, 2011 5:30am]

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