You just can't go wrong with smoked burgers stuffed with a big ‘ol hunk of cheese and wrapped in long, tasty slices of cured pork belly. To make matters even better, they are dusted with Jeff's original rub and finished off with a rich slathering of Jeff's original barbecue sauce for a glorious finish.

I may have just heard a choir singing…

What You'll Need
  • 3 lbs 80/20 ground chuck
  • 2 lbs sliced bacon
  • Cheddar cheese cut into 9 cubes (colby, pepper jack, etc. would also work)
  • 1 batch of Jeff's original rub (if you don't have the recipe, purchase it here)
  • Buns, lettuce, tomatoes, onions and condiments
  • Toothpicks (handy for holding bacon in place)
  • Thermapen Mk4 or Thermopop (ensures burgers are safely done to correct temperature)
Form and Stuff with Cheese

Divide meat into 1/3 lb balls

Hamburger ball

Use your thumb to hollow out a hole in the center of the ball

Hollowed out for cheese

Place a cube of cheese or a cheddar Babybel in the hole

Place cheese in hole

Pull the meat up around the top to cover the cheese and seal the meat closed. Press the meat down into a thick patty.

Wrap with Bacon

Lay 3 or 4 slices of bacon in a criss cross fashion on a plate, cutting board, etc..

Lay the burger in the center of the bacon slices and wrap the bacon up, and over the burger.

Bacon ready to wrap around burger

Push a toothpick through the bacon and into the burger to hold everything in place.

Bacon held in place with toothpick
Tip: if you like the bacon to be extra crispy when finished, Pre-fry the bacon before wrapping it around the burgers but don't fry it as long as you normally would. You don't want it to be crispy just partly done so that it is still flexible.

Add Some Rub

Sprinkle the outside of the bacon wrapped burgers liberally with Jeff's original rub (purchase recipe here) and they are ready to cook.

Set up Your Smoker or Grill

If you are using a gas grill, which some of you do, there' s a few things you can do to both cook the meat and add some smoke.

Foil Packet with Wood Chips: In general, you just wrap a handful of dry wood chips (I used grape wood chips that I found at our local Ace Hardware) in a large piece of foil. Poke a few holes in the top using a fork or other sharp object to let the smoke get out.

Here is a more detailed instructional for making a foil woodchip pack.

Foil packet with chips

Place the foil packet above the flame either on the grate just above one of the burners, just below the grate but above the burner. The main think is that it must be above the flame and close enough to the flame to make the wood chips smoke real good.

I have a Charbroil Red Infrared grill with 4 burners so I just place the packet down in the pans or sometimes I just place dry wood chips directly in the pan itself without even being wrapped and both configurations work well. You will have to experiment a little to see what works best with your grill.

Foil packet below grate Foil packet with chips + Extra chips

Smoke Generator: This is basically any device or machine that “generates” smoke allowing you to add flavor to food such as on a grill, cold smoking cheese, etc.. I use the A-Maze-N products for this.

It's a small metal maze or tube (depending on the model) that holds pellets. The pellets are lit and after just a few minutest the flame goes out leaving you with a “cherry” that travels from one end of the device to the other smoldering the wood pellets and creating smoke. It can take from 6 to 11 hours to go from one end to the other just depending on what device or model you get and whether you light one end or light both end for double smoke.

The A-Maze-N Tray (longer burn time, takes up more space)

The A-Maze-N Tube (shorter burn time, takes up less space)

What a great invention for things like gas grills!

Cooking/Smoking the Burgers

Cooking on a Gas Grill: This is a combination of low indirect heat followed by high direct heat and works best using zones. Try to create a side of your grill that is low heat and a side that is high heat that way you can move the burgers around to achieve the desired result. This is especially easy to do with a charcoal grill but is possible in a gas grill as well by adjusting the burners.

I recommend placing the burgers on the low heat side of your grill. Dust them with my rub for loads of flavor and let them smoke for about 25-30 minutes. They can then be moved to the high heat side to help crisp the bacon. The burgers will need to be turned over about 10 minutes before they are done to allow the bacon to crisp on both sides.

Brush them with my barbecue sauce once you turn them over for a flavor you won't soon forget.

For safety, I recommend using a handheld thermometer such as a Thermapen to test the internal temperature of the burgers. They are done at 160°F

Cooking on a Pellet Grill: Pellet grills are all the rage now and some might think that because they are called “grills” they are similar to a gas or charcoal grill and are meant for hot and fast cooking. Well, they'd be wrong.

I use my pellet grill for low and slow cooking all of the time but then these burgers do best with a combination of low and slow and hot and fast so maybe a pellet grill is the perfect unit for these.. I think so!

Burgers only take about 1 hour to cook at 225-240°F but if you place the pellet grill on the specialized smoke setting (they all have one) for about 30 minutes before cranking them up to 350°F or so, you'll have smoke flavor and bacon with a good bite-through on the outside.

For best results, remove the burger from the grate, into a pan when they are done smoking, crank up the heat and once 350°F is acquired, place the burgers back onto the grate to finish.

About 10 minutes before they are done, brush on some of Jeff's original barbecue sauce .

Use a handheld thermometer such as a Thermapen to test the internal temperature of the burgers. They are done at 160°F.

Cooking on a Regular Smoker: Set up your smoker for cooking at 225-240°F with indirect heat. If your smoker has a water pan, fill it up.

Smoke cook the burgers for about an hour, no flipping required and keep the smoke going the entire time. When the internal temperature reaches 160°F, call them done.

You can also give the bacon a better texture by only leaving them in the smoker for about 30 minutes then throw them on a hot grill to finish. About 10 minutes before they are done, brush some original barbecue sauce onto them to make them extra tasty.

Use a handheld thermometer such as a Thermapen to test the internal temperature of the burgers. They are done at 160°F

Perfectly cooked burger wrapped in bacon

You Don't Want to Use Bacon?

No problem.. follow the same procedure and be sure to brush on plenty of barbecue sauce when they are about 10 minutes away from being done.

Perfectly cooked burger - No bacon

Regardless of how you choose to cook the burgers, Use a Thermapen or a ThermoPop to test the temperature and when the center of the burger reaches 160°F, it's perfectly done.

Make a Sandwich

Use premium hamburger buns, red onions, leaf lettuce, heirloom tomatoes and your favorite condiments (Cheese already included) and chow down!

Juicy, oozy sandwich

Follow my recipe exactly and your guests will be asking you for your secrets to making perfect burgers!

Please note that my rubs and barbecue sauce are now available in 2 formats-- you can purchase the formulas and make them yourself OR you can buy them already made, in a bottle, ready to use.
Get the Digital Recipes for Jeff's Rub and Sauce
**Instant Download!**
jeffs-rub-recipe jeffs-sauce-recipe

***Note: you get the Texas style rub recipe free with your order!

If I could give these recipes away, I would do that. I really want you to have them! But, then, this is how I support the newsletter, the website and all of the other stuff that we do here to promote the art of smoking meat.

Read these recent testimonies:

"Love the sauce and rub recipes. So far I have used them on beef ribs, pork ribs, and different chicken parts. Can't wait to do a beef brisket. Texas rub is great as well!" ~Peter S.
"I tried the rub on a beef brisket and some beef ribs the other day and our entire family enjoyed it tremendously. I also made a batch of the barbeque sauce that we used on the brisket as well as some chicken. We all agreed it was the best sauce we have had in a while." ~Darwyn B.
"Love the original rib rub and sauce! We have an annual rib fest competition at the lake every 4th of July. I will say we have won a great percent of the time over the past 15 years so we are not novices by any means. However, we didn't win last year and had to step up our game! We used Jeff's rub and sauce (sauce on the side) and it was a landslide win for us this year! Thanks Jeff for the great recipes. I'm looking forward to trying the Texas style rub in the near future!" ~Michelle M.

You see the raving testimonies and you wonder, "Can the recipes really be that good?"

No worries! Make up a batch and if it's not as good as you've heard.. simply ask for a refund. Now that's a bargain and you know it. Let's review:

  • You decide you don't like the recipes.. you don't pay!
  • The recipes are absolutely amazing!
  • Once you order, there'll be no more recipe ads in the email version of the newsletter

Well.. what are you waiting for.. click on the big orange button below to order the recipes now.

Order the Digital Recipes for Jeff's Rub and Sauce

I really, really appreciate the support from my newsletter friends and be sure to let me know if you have any questions about this.

Jeff's Smoking Meat Book

smoking-meat-book-cover-275x289The book is full of recipes and contains tons of helpful information as well. Some have even said that "no smoker should be without this book"!

With more than 800 reviews on and a rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars, it comes highly recommended.

It is a Bestseller in Barbecueing & Grilling books on Amazon.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | German Edition

Digital versions available via Nook | iTunes | Kindle

Get Almost Anything at Amazon

If you enjoy the newsletter and would like to do something helpful, then..

The next time you decide to order something at, use THIS LINK to get there and we'll get a small commission off of what you purchase.

Thank you in advance for using our special link:

Smoked Stuffed Burgers Wrapped in Piggy Goodness

You just can't go wrong with smoked burgers stuffed with a big 'ol hunk of cheese and wrapped in long, tasty slices of cured pork belly. Dusted with Jeff's original rub and finished off with a rich slathering of Jeff's original barbecue sauce.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Course: Beef
Cuisine: Barbecue
Author: Jeff Phillips


  • 3 lbs 80/20 ground chuck
  • 2 lbs sliced bacon
  • Cheddar cheese cut into 9 cubes colby, pepper jack, etc. would also work
  • 1 batch of Jeff's original rub if you don't have the recipe, purchase it here
  • Buns lettuce, tomatoes, onions and condiments
  • Toothpicks handy for holding bacon in place
  • Thermapen Mk4 or Thermopop ensures burgers are safely done to correct temperature


  • Make 1/3 lb ball of 80/20 ground chuck
  • Hollow out a hole or area for cheese
  • Place cheese in hole
  • Pull meat up and over hole to cover and seal
  • Place 3-4 pieces of bacon on flat surface in criss-cross fashion
  • Place stuffed burger in center of bacon
  • Wrap bacon pieces around burger and secure with toothpick
  • Dust generously with my original rub (purchase recipe here)
  • Smoke cook until burgers reach 160°F in center
  • Brush with my original barbecue sauce (purchase recipe here) 10 minutes before they are done
  • Remove from heat immediately and serve
  • Provide buns, veggies and condiments for the best burgers in town!