Oil Tanker Burgers

The summer's latest burger obsession, one invented by a creative young cook, age 10. He calls it an "Oil Tanker" (an unusual burger name which makes particular sense to a ten-year old ...) but this burger is stacked so high, maybe it's not just an Oil Tanker but a Super Tanker. I had another recipe planned for today but, really, a long weekend is just ahead and all these layers add up to the best burgers we've had in a long time ... so if burgers are on your menu, consider an Oil Tanker. Happy three-day weekends, all!

A Special Summer Burger. Weekday Easy, Weekend Special.
Oil Tanker Burgers, another special summer burger ♥ KitchenParade.com, extraordinary burgers from ordinary condiments. Weekend Easy, Weekend Special.

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Encouraging a Third Generation of Cooks

My husband and I are both avid cooks so we are thrilled that three of six grandchildren are having fun (and developing real skills) in the kitchen.

The oldest grandson is a senior in high school and bakes bread, experiments with Chinese dumplings and has already fixed on his favorite way to cook burgers. Since about age ten, he'll suggest to his grandpa, "Maybe we could cook a meal together." And so grandpa and grandson plan, shop for and cook a meal, often an elaborate undertaking where the teaching goes both directions. For his birthday, he picks out a cooking class and he and Grandpa go together.

The youngest grandson R, age 10, is always enthusiastic about baking surprise cakes for his parents, mixing up Baked Pumpkin Donuts & Donut Holes – and he just might make the best chocolate chip cookies on the planet. So good!

The second-youngest grandson J, also age 10 (yes, they're twins!) is always thinking up creative new combinations, often engineering feats. For his grandpa's birthday last month, he disappeared into the kitchen, then emerged with chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches. So good! And yes, this is the grandson who thought up his soon-to-be-famous Oil Tanker Burgers.

Do we have budding chefs in our midst? Who knows, who knows ... but it's enough that these kids are learning their ways around the kitchen and building confidence in their results: life skills that will long pay off.

Enter the "Oil Tank Burger": No "Recipe" Required

The name may be inexplicable but Oil Tanker Burgers are no more complicated than good burgers and everyday burger condiments stacked up in a particular order. The result is ... a towering-good burger!

J and his grandpa cooked Oil Tankers for my birthday this month. With a little organizational help from me, we served the burgers buffet style, arranging the condiments one after the other so that people could build their own burgers with the condiments in the right order.

I've been obsessed every since! In fact, I had another recipe ready to share today and nixed it early this morning, just so you'd have the chance to taste an Oil Tanker Burger for yourself ... and sooner than later.

Coming Up? An All-Bacon Dinner.

Heaven help us but this family's third-generation cooks are strategizing for a multi-course bacon dinner. We just need a date ... and a lot of bacon. I shall provide a full report ...


Hands-on time: about 30 minutes
Time-to-table: about 30 minutes
Makes 1 to many
  • Toasted burger buns (toasted buns are essential!)
  • Ketchup (try not to squirt it all over the plate)
  • Hamburger dill chip pickles (no sweet pickles, please)
  • Just-cooked burger patties (cooked how you please)
  • A slice of juicy summer tomato (as ripe as can be)
  • A thin slice (or a ring) of white or sweet onion (don't skip)
  • Yellow ballpark mustard (nothing fancy)

Order is important, stack the ingredients in the order listed, extra points if you squirt the mustard in a way that looks like a "sun". Dig in!

ALANNA's & J's TIPS My Easy Everyday Bread Recipe makes excellent burger buns. Since you can make as many or as few burger buns as you'll use up, no wasted buns! Cook the burgers however you like, we're partial to browning the burgers on cast iron, then finishing in the oven. This is a great way to serve burgers for a crowd, just set up a buffet line with the condiments in the right order. Add a salad or two and a big watermelon: you've got yourself a feast.
NUTRITION INFORMATION Per Burger, includes a bun & assumes 4 ounces uncooked 90% lean beef: 360 Calories; 12g Tot Fat; 5g Sat Fat; 73mg Cholesterol; 954mg Sodium; 31g Carb; 2g Fiber; 9g Sugar; 28g Protein. WEIGHT WATCHERS Old Points 8 & PointsPlus 9 & SmartPoints 11 & Freestyle 10 & myWW green 10 & blue 10 & purple 10

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If you like Kitchen Parade's recipes, you'll love A Veggie Venture, my food blog about vegetables with more from-scratch recipes using whole, healthful ingredients, home to the famous Alphabet of Vegetables and vegetables in every course, seasonal to staples, savory to sweet, salads to sides, soups to supper, simple to special.

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Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Quick Suppers are Kitchen Parade favorites and feature recipes easy on the budget, the clock, the waistline and the dishwasher. Do you have a favorite recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via recipes@kitchen-parade.com. How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. Never miss a recipe! If you like this recipe, sign up for a free e-mail subscription. If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. If you make this recipe, I'd love to know your results! Just leave a comment below.

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Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. Your grandson is super cute! And we’re going to try his super tanker this weekend, they look excellent.


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. But I also love hearing your reactions, your curiosity, even your concerns! When you've made a recipe, I especially love to know how it turned out, what variations you made, what you'll do differently the next time. ~ Alanna