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Happy National Hamburger Month! Time to grill up a classic

May is National Hamburger Month! Celebrate by testing your culinary skills and cooking up this classic, scrumptious burger.

This fact may be arguable (any fans of the Piña Colada Song out there?), but in my opinion there has never been a more popular song about food ever written. I think I could sing every word before I’d reached the age of ten. We all know the song, but truth be told, the words describe a pretty basic cheeseburger. The burger recipe below was developed to more accurately replicate the burger that Jimmy holds near and dear to his heart.

Instead of just Heinz 57, you have a tangy, creamy, finger-licking sauce that elevates the burger to new heights, and instead of a simple beef patty you have a spice-scented, salty rub so that every bite has a kick of its own.

Of course, the “big kosher pickle” makes its way into the sauce, tucked under the bun, for the unmistakable crunch Jimmy so melodiously celebrates. It’s burger month, and the weather is getting warmer, but plan a little time in the kitchen to kick things off right – with the original Cheeseburger in Paradise.

Cheeseburgers in Paradise with Paradise Island Dressing

Serves 4

  • 1 Âľ pounds ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon Margaritaville House Spice Blend (see recipe below)
  • 2 tablespoons neutral oil
  • 4 burger buns, split and lightly toasted
  • 8 slices American cheese
  • 2 cups shredded iceberg lettuce
  • 4 large tomato slices
  • 8 dill pickle slices

½ cup Paradise Island Dressing  (see recipe below)


  1. Divide the ground beef into 4 even portions and shape each into a patty.
  2. Sprinkle both sides of each burger with some of the Margaritaville House Spice Blend.
  3. Place the oil in a large, heavy cast iron skillet that can hold the burgers in an even layer (or work in batches or use two skillets).
  4. Set the skillet over high heat and turn your exhaust fan on. Once the skillet is smoking hot, place the burgers in the skillet and cook until the undersides are nicely browned, about 2-3 minutes.
  5. Carefully turn the burgers and top each one with 2 slices of American cheese.  Cook until the second sides are nicely browned and the cheese melts, a final 2-4 minutes.
  6. Put ¼ cup of shredded lettuce on the bottom half of each burger bun and top with a cheeseburger.  Top each cheeseburger with another ¼ cup of lettuce, a slice of tomato, and a few slices of dill pickle.
  7. Spread 2 tablespoons of Paradise Island Dressing on the undersides of the top buns and then close the burgers.  Serve immediately.


Margaritaville House Spice Blend 

Makes 1/3 cup

  • 2 tablespoons onion powder
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin


Place all of the ingredients in a bowl and whisk together.


Paradise Island Dressing

Makes 1 cup

  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • ÂĽ cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons drained pickle relish
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt


Place all of the ingredients together in a large bowl and whisk together.  Taste for seasoning, adding more lime and/or salt as needed.