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How to Make Frozen Burgers in Air Fryer

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Frozen Burgers in the Air Fryer are a lifesaver! Did you forget to thaw your hamburger patties? Don’t worry. Cook frozen burgers in the air fryer, from freezer to table in about 20 minutes or less!

Close up of air fried hamburger in bun with cheese, tomato, onion, and lettuce next to sweet potato fries

Can frozen burgers go in the air fryer?

Yes! However, if you’re looking to cook ground beef that you form into your own patties (fresh meat), you can check out my post on how to make air fryer hamburgers. 

It’s tricky to cook frozen meat! Either you have to wait for it to thaw (why is it always so hard to remember this step?!) or cook from frozen and risk it tasting dry and tough.

Thankfully, air fryer burgers cook wonderfully from frozen! If you have hamburger patties in the freezer, you can make a juicy, crispy, and delicious air fryer burger in less than 20 minutes.

I think the easiest and least-messy way to cook a frozen hamburger patty is in the air fryer. I use my Instant brand Vortex Plus Air Fryer to make air fryer hamburgers from frozen, but you can use any air fryer!

Are Air Fryer Hamburgers Good?

There’s so many ways to cook a hamburger—in the oven, on the stovetop, or on the grill. Yes, you can also air fry hamburger meat! I love Air Fryer Hamburgers for three main reasons:

  1. Burgers in the air fryer cook quickly. It’s great for an easy meal with minimal planning ahead. Air fryer burgers from frozen don’t even require defrosting!
  2. The perfect texture. Air fryer burgers are juicy on the inside and crisp on the outside.
  3. Healthier hamburger. The air fryer helps drain off some of the grease while cooking, which reduces fat and calories.
  4. Very little mess. Since the burgers are contained in the air fryer, I don’t have to worry about it splattering grease all over my stove.
  5. No babysitting. I can put frozen hamburger patties in the air fryer and walk away!

How to Make Frozen Burgers in Air Fryer

How long does it take to cook frozen burgers in an air fryer? What temperature to cook frozen hamburgers in an air fryer? Today I’ll answer all your questions about how to make air fryer burgers from frozen!

  • First, preheat the air fryer to 400º F.
  • Spritz or spray the hamburger patties (frozen) with a little oil. I. use this oil mister or cooking spray.
  • Evenly season both sides of the hamburger patties. I like to use a seasoning blend like Montreal Steak seasoning, or I also love a simple kosher salt, black pepper, and garlic powder blend!
  • Place the four seasoned, frozen hamburger patties in the air fryer, evenly spaced.
  • Cook at 400º F for 12 minutes, or until the meat thermometer reads 160ºF. Flip the hamburgers in the air fryer halfway through cooking.

It’s that simple! Prepare your buns, sauces, and toppings while the air fryer burgers cook. You’ll have a meal on the table in no time.

Frozen Air Fryer Hamburger Tips

  • I recommend using frozen ground beef patties with 80/20 or 90/10 fat content. The burgers are too greasy with higher fat content.
  • Flip the hamburgers in the air fryer halfway through cooking. This ensures the frozen hamburger patty cooks evenly.
  • Space the hamburger patties evenly in the air fryer. If all four burgers can’t fit without touching or overlapping, cook in batches. Air fryer burgers need space for the ventilation to cook them through. If you add too many burgers in the air fryer, it will result in a lot of steam and won’t have that crispy outside and juicy center.
  • Use my favorite meat thermometer. Every air fryer cooks a little differently and frozen hamburger patties have unique sizes. Simply use the meat thermometer to get the cook time just right!
  • If you want an air fryer cheeseburger, simply add cheese on top of the patty one minute before the cook time is over and let it cook until melted.
Top view of prepared hamburgers cooked in the air fryer with bun, patty, cheese, and lettuce on wooden board next to tomatoes, onions, and sweet potato fries

Air Fryer Burger Variations and Toppings

I love this recipe because you can adjust the toppings according to your needs, cravings, and preferences!

  • Top it with classic condiments, such as onions, tomato, lettuce, and pickle.
  • Make some air fryer bacon to top your burger!
  • Try adding pineapple for a Hawaiian burger.
  • Dress it with avocado and green chili for a Southwestern burger. 
  • Smother it with your favorite BBQ sauce and onions for a delicious cowboy burger. 
  • Before cooking the air fryer hamburger patties, quickly fry bacon in the air fryer for an air fryer bacon cheeseburger.
  • Mix together softened cream cheese and chopped pickled jalapenos for a delicious spread. I also love spreading a little pepper jelly on top of it for a Pepper Jelly burger.
  • Use a lettuce wrap or tortilla, instead of a bun, for a low carb option.

The possibilities are endless! Let me know in the comments how you dress your air fryer burger.

Side view close up of a frozen air fryer hamburger in bun with cheese and lettuce next to tomato slices and sweet potato fries

How to Cook Frozen Turkey Burgers in Air Fryer

Many people replace ground beef with ground turkey for a heart healthy alternative. Ground turkey is generally lower in saturated fat and calories than ground beef.

Simply replace the frozen ground beef in this recipe with frozen ground turkey patties for an even healthier air fryer burger! Since turkey can be less flavorful than ground beef and has less fat, I recommend adding additional seasoning to taste and even topping each patty with a little pat of butter (if you don’t mind the calories).

How long does it take to cook frozen turkey burgers in the air fryer? I have found that the cook time is comparable to frozen beef hamburger patties. However, I always recommend checking the temperature with a meat thermometer at the thickest part of the burger. The USDA recommends cooking ground turkey to 165ºF.

frozen french fries, tator tots, and curly fries in an air fryer basket

Air fryer burgers and fries

There’s nothing better than serving a juicy hamburger with fries. I have two ideas for making fries to serve with your frozen air fryer hamburgers:

  1. Before you make your hamburgers, make these delicious Air Fryer Potato Wedges. Then make your air fryer burgers. While you’re dressing your burgers, pop the potato wedges back in the air fryer to reheat at 350ºF for a couple minutes. Serve with fry sauce!
  2. Keep it simple and buy a bag of frozen fries from your local grocery store. To learn how to make frozen fries in the air fryer, check out my post on Frozen French Fries in the Air Fryer!
  3. If you want something a little healthier and different, try my air fryer sweet potato fries, air fryer buffalo cauliflower bites, or air fryer green beans!

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graphic with two pictures of top down hamburgers and an air fryer hamburger from the side view.
Side view close up of hamburger in bun with cheese and lettuce next to tomato slices and sweet potato fries

Frozen Air Fryer Hamburgers

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes

Did you forget to thaw your hamburger patties? Don’t worry. Cook frozen burgers in the air fryer, from freezer to table in about 20 minutes or less!

Ingredients

  • 4, 1/4 lb frozen hamburger patties
  • Oil for brushing or spritzing
  • 2 teaspoons Montreal Steak seasoning, salt/pepper blend, or your favorite burger seasoning
  • Burger fixings: buns, lettuce, tomato, ketchup, mustard, cheese, etc.

Instructions

  1. Preheat the air fryer to 400º F.
  2. Brush or spritz each frozen hamburger patty with oil.
  3. Season each patty on both sides with 1/2 teaspoon of your favorite burger seasoning or salt and pepper.
  4. Place each patty into the preheated air fryer and cook for 12 minutes, flipping halfway through cooking. Check the temperature starting at 10 minutes cooked and cook until the burger registers at a minimum of 165º F using an instant read thermometer.
  5. Remove from the air fryer and serve immediately.

Notes

  • If you'd like to add cheese to your air fryer hamburger, place a slice of cheese on top of the burger patty 1 minute before the end of the cook time.
  • I found that the burgers turned out pretty similar whether they were flipped halfway through the cook time or not. It's your preference.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1492Total Fat: 87gSaturated Fat: 33gTrans Fat: 3gUnsaturated Fat: 42gCholesterol: 473mgSodium: 1412mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 139g

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