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Let the delicious savory sweet taste of this juicy Hawaiian Burger with grilled pineapple transport you straight to the sights and sounds of the Hawaiian islands. 

A pineapple teriyaki sauce atop a slightly charred pineapple and grilled red onion are the flavors that will make you dream of an Hawaiian paradise. After one bite of this Hawaiian Teriyaki Burger recipe, a plain burger just isn’t the same!

an open face hawaiian burger with provolone cheese, grilled pineapple, and red onion and drizzled with sauce on a plate.

Grilling burgers in the summertime go together like peanut butter and jelly… only better!

So while you’re grilling, include a few sides that go together with burgers and summer, like my Grilled Corn in Foil with Parmesan ButterRed Potato Salad, and Easy Baked Beans

And there you have a beautifully complete summer cookout! Aloha!

ingredients for making hawaiian burger on a table.

Key ingredients & substitutions for Hawaiian Teriyaki Burger

  • Ground beef — Ground turkey or chicken are popular alternatives for lean ground beef, or combine and do half and half. 
  • Pineapple — Cut your own fresh or use canned pineapple rings. Or if pineapple isn’t your thing or you don’t have any, substitute it with mangos, papaya, or apricots. 
  • Red onion — Substitute yellow onions if you don’t have red onion on hand. 
  • Provolone cheese — Mozzarella is an easy go-to, but Fontina cheese is the best replacement. 
  • Lettuce — Crispy lettuce gives it a nice crunch, but feel free to use another favorite green. 
  • Hamburger buns — Brioche or King’s Hawaiian buns give added sweetness. For GF, Happy Campers and Udi’s are top choices. 

For the sauce:

  • Teriyaki sauce — Use Worcestershire sauce or BBQ sauce as a substitute.
  • Ketchup — Kick it up a notch and substitute your favorite salsa.
  • Brown sugar — Replace with coconut sugar or add maple syrup or molasses to your white sugar. 
  • Minced garlic — No minced garlic? No worries. Use ¼ tsp garlic powder or 1 clove. 

How to make Hawaiian Burger Recipe

Gather your ingredients and prep them, so they’re ready to go, like slicing the onion and pineapple if using fresh.

STEP 1 | Making the sauce

Use a small saucepan to mix the teriyaki sauce, ketchup, brown sugar, and garlic. Cook it over medium-high heat until it comes to a boil. Then reduce the heat and simmer it for about 5 minutes.

pressing a thumb print into a hamburger patty for grilling.

STEP 2 | Patty the burgers

You want to preheat the grill to high heat. Divide your ground beef into four pieces and shape them into about 3/4 -inch thick burger patties.

Here’s a little trick: Use your thumb to press an indention right in the center to prevent the burger from bulging on the grill. Always season your patties with salt and pepper on both sides to ensure all the meat is covered. 

tips

  • For a toasty bun, brush the cut sides of the bun with olive oil and toast on the grill. 
  • Just like when you’re mixing dough, use the same concept when making your patties. Don’t overwork them. Patty just enough to create the shape. 
  • No one wants a dry burger, so slather on that sauce!

Hawaiian Burgers on a grill and basting them with sauce.

STEP 3 | Cook and baste

Grill the burgers over the direct heat for 4 minutes on the first side. Using the teriyaki sauce, baste the burgers and then flip. Then cook them for another 4 minutes. 

brushing onion slices with olive oil; pineapple rings and onion slices on a grill.

STEP 4 | Grill the toppings

While the burgers are cooking, place the pineapple slices and onion slices on the other side of the grill and adjust the heat to medium. Cook each side for 1-2 minutes. You want it to be slightly charred. Remove them from the grill onto a plate until the burgers are ready.

STEP 5 | Continue cooking

Baste the burgers a second time and flip once more. Top it with a slice of provolone cheese and cook another minute until the cheese is nice and melted. The burgers are done when the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees. 

spooning sauce on an open face hawaiian burger.

STEP 6 | Plate and serve

Serve each burger on a bun with lettuce, the grilled onion slice, and 2 pineapple slices. Drizzle more of the delicious teriyaki barbecue sauce on top. 

You may need an extra napkin for these juicy Hawaiian burgers!

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Frequently asked questions

How do I make sure the burgers are juicy?

One of the ways to keep your burger juicy is to keep it cold until you’re ready to use it. Another step is not to turn it several times. You want to store all those juices inside the burger.

Do burgers need to “rest” for a while before serving?

Burgers need to rest for about 5 minutes so the fat will drain on the plate and not on your bun. It also allows juices to distribute throughout the meat. 

Should I smash or flatten my burger out while grilling?

You definitely do not want to flatten your burger while cooking because it will squeeze all those yummy juices out. If you follow the recipe instructions, you should have a perfect burger. 

a hawaaian burger on a white plate sitting on a colorful place mat.

Serving suggestions

There are SO many accompaniment options for burgers, and this Tangy No Mayo Coleslaw is one of them. Instead of picking up a bag of chips at the supermarket, why not make your own with my Air Fryer Sweet Potato Chips

Of course, the ultimate end to juicy summer burgers is yummy ice cream, like my Homemade Peach Ice Cream. Again, why buy premade when it’s easier to make your own creamy goodness?

Other Hawaiian burger toppings

The beauty of burger recipes is there is no end to creating anything your tastebuds crave. 

Add more Hawaiian burger toppings like grilled bell pepper rings or tomato as another colorful flavor, or saute a handful of mushrooms. 

If you like a bit of heat, spread some sriracha mayo on the bun, or if you’re the one who loves bacon on everything, throw a couple of strips on top. 

Behind the recipe: Pineapple and Teriyaki Hawaiian Burgers

When we think of pineapples, it’s probably part of a recipe for a dish or dessert, but in Hawaii, it’s very much part of their culture. 

A pineapple in Hawaiian culture symbolizes welcoming and relaxing hospitality, which is the perfect connection because of their juicy sweetness. This favorite fruit is commonly used as part of beautiful luaus, edible displays, decorations, or garnishes for tropical drinks. 

Almost one-third of the world’s pineapple crop comes from the aloha state, and thousands come from around the world to experience the Dole Plantation, which is Hawaii’s second-most visited attraction. 

I love this little motto we often see pop up in little boutiques or on a T-shirt: Be a pineapple — stand tall, wear a crown, and be sweet on the inside.

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an open face hawaiian burger with provolone cheese, grilled pineapple, and red onion and drizzled with sauce on a plate.

Hawaiian Burgers

Let the delicious taste of this Hawaiian Burger with grilled pineapple transport you straight to the sights and sounds of the Hawaiian islands. 
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 4 servings
Calories 794 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1/3 cup teriyaki sauce
  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef 85/15
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil divided
  • 8 pineapple rings
  • 1 large red onion sliced into 4 thick pieces
  • 4 slices provolone cheese
  • 4 brioche hamburger buns or King's Hawaiian buns
  • lettuce leaves

Instructions
 

  • In a small saucepan over medium high heat, stir together the teriyaki sauce, ketchup, brown sugar, and garlic. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Preheat the grill to high heat. Shape the ground beef into 4 patties about 3/4-inch thick. Use your thumb to press an indention into the center to prevent the burger from bulging on the grill. Season the patties on both sides with salt and pepper.
  • Cook the burgers over direct high heat for 4 minutes on the first side. Baste with the sauce and flip, then cook another 4 minutes.
  • Baste the burgers again and flip before topping with a slice of provolone cheese Cook another minute until the cheese is melted and the burgers are done (or the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees).
  • While the burgers are cooking, place the pineapple rings and onion slices on the other side of the grill and adjust to medium heat. Cook on each side 1-2 minutes, until slightly charred. Remove to a plate until the burgers are ready.
  • Serve each burger on a bun with lettuce, a slice of grilled onion, 2 pineapple slices, and more teriyaki barbecue sauce drizzled on top.

Notes

  • For a toasty bun, brush the cut sides of the bun with olive oil and toast on the grill. 
  • Just like when you’re mixing dough, use the same concept when making your patties. Don’t overwork them. Patty just enough to create the shape. 
  • No one wants a dry burger, so slather on that sauce!

Nutrition

Calories: 794kcalCarbohydrates: 65gProtein: 41gFat: 41gSaturated Fat: 17gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 17gTrans Fat: 2gCholesterol: 134mgSodium: 2153mgPotassium: 854mgFiber: 3gSugar: 42gVitamin A: 329IUVitamin C: 14mgCalcium: 284mgIron: 6mg
Keyword barbecue, beef, grilled, pineapple
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was.
sheila thigpen in her kitchen

About Sheila Thigpen

Recipe Developer, Food Photographer, Food Writer

Sheila Thigpen is the publisher of Life, Love, and Good Food — a Southern food blog — and the author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook. After 20+ years in the publishing industry, she retired in 2018 to focus on her own creative endeavors full time. She and her husband live near the beautiful Smoky Mountains and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. As an influencer, Sheila has collaborated with brands like Creamette, Kroger, HERSHEY’S, Hamilton Beach, Garafalo Pasta, OXO, Smithfield, Valley Fig Growers, and more.

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