There was a time—a very dark time in our history—when the only way to procure one of Danny Meyer’s succulent ShackBurgers was by waiting in the serpentine line that snaked through Manhattan’s Washington Square Park, home of the first ever Shake Shack. By opening that tiny kiosk in 2004, Meyer sparked a burger revolution. While his competitors tried and failed to mimic Meyer’s winning formula, Shake Shack went nuclear, and currently boasts 131 locations around the word (and counting).
The next step in Shake Shack’s quest for world domination comes in the form of a brand new cookbook, which hits shelves later this week. Written by Shake Shack CEO Randy Garutti, culinary director Mark Rosati, and author Dorothy Kalins, Shake Shack: Recipes & Stories is a love letter to the iconic burger chain, and includes its origin story, and its path to burger supremacy.
But the thing that’ll have Shack-heads rushing to their nearest bookstore come Tuesday are the recipes. All of the restaurant’s most famous items get broken down here, including the Shackburger, which super fans and amateur cooks can now make in the comfort of their own homes.
Unfortunately, the team is keeping their most precious trade secrets–like what exactly goes in their highly addictive Shack Sauce, or the exact ratios for their famous Pat LaFrieda burger blend—locked in the vault.
Intsead, they adapted their recipes using ingredients that are accessible to the common home chef. “We didn’t want this to sit on your shelf,“ Garutti told Eater. “We wanted to put out something you would actually reference.”
So without further ado, here’s how to make the ShackBurger–the one recipe that has the power to change the course of your summer.
The ShackBurger (Makes 4)
• 4 hamburger potato buns
• 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
• 4 tablespoons Not Quite Our Shack-Sauce
• 4 pieces green leaf lettuce
• 8 ¼-inch slices ripe plum tomato
• 1 pound very cold ground beef, divided into 4 pucks
• ½ teaspoon Our Salt & Pepper Mix
• 4 slices American cheese
1. Heat a cast-iron griddle over medium-low heat until warm. Meanwhile, open the hamburger buns and brush the insides with the melted butter. A soft brush is helpful here. Place the buns buttered side down on the griddle and toast until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer buns to a plate. Spoon the sauce onto the top bun. Add a piece of the lettuce and two slices of tomato. 2. Increase the heat to medium and heat the griddle until hot, 2 to 3 minutes. 3. Evenly sprinkle a pinch of Our Salt & Pepper Mix on top of each puck of meat. 4. Place the pucks on the griddle, seasoned side down. Using a large, sturdy metal spatula, firmly smash each puck into a 1/3-inch-thick round patty. Pressing down on the spatula with another stiff spatula helps flatten the burger quickly. Evenly sprinkle another big pinch of Our Salt & Pepper Mix. 5. Cook the burgers, resisting the urge to move them, until the edges beneath are brown and crisp, and juices on the surface are bubbling hot, about 2½ minutes. Slide one of the spatulas beneath the burger to release it from the griddle and scrape up the caramelized browned crust. Use the other spatula to steady the burger and keep it from sliding. Flip the burgers. Put the cheese on top and cook the burgers 1 minute longer for medium. Cook more or less depending on your preference. 6. Transfer the cheeseburgers to the prepared buns and enjoy.
OUR SALT & PEPPER MIX:
We mix ½ cup kosher salt with ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper and use that mixture to season our burgers as they cook. You’ll see we call for a pinch or two of the mixture in every recipe.
ShackSauce | MAKES ABOUT ½ CUP
Long ago we threw away the key to the secret recipe for ShackSauce; but we promise to get you really close with ingredients easily found in your kitchen: ½ cup Hellman’s mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
¾ teaspoon Heinz ketchup
¼ teaspoon kosher dill pickling brine
Pinch of cayenne pepper