Surf and Turf Tailgate Burgers with Grassfed Beef and Chili-Glazed Caribbean Prawn

If you ask me, surf and turf burgers are life. And life is surf and turf burgers!

On this weekend I’m throwing down a livefire gridiron feast for a crowd on the eve of college football’s greatest rivalry – Michigan State University v. University of Michigan. This gourmet tailgate in beautiful Ann Arbor, Michigan features gargantuan fontina cheeseburgers comprised of both land and sea.

Beginning with a chef’s blend of Australian free-range grass-fed ground chuck, ground brisket and spicy chorizo. Encrusted upon white hot cast iron and prepared to mid-rare perfection over a raging inferno charcoal and smoky hardwoods. Rested atop a bed of heirloom tomatoes and fresh greens, then garnished with a sauté of roasted garlic and caramelized red onion, before topping with a skewer of chili-glazed and grilled Caribbean prawn.

Sandwiched between an artisan brioche bun slathered in a gorgeous whole-grain chipotle mustard aioli. Plated with a bucket of barbecued-flavored kettle potato chips and best served alongside great friends, a crisp, icy brewski and a big Wolverine W!!! Stay hungry. Cheers! -David

Surf and Turf Tailgate Burgers with Grass-Fed Australian Beef and Chili-Glazed Caribbean Prawn

Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr 30 mins
Author: A Bachelor & His Grill


  • Grass-Fed Australian Beef and Chorizo Burger:
  • 1 pound each of Australian grass-fed ground chuck and brisket
  • 1 pound ground spicy pork chorizo
  • Olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon each garlic and onion powder
  • 1 pinch of sugar
  • Kosher salt and fresh ground peppercorn to taste
  • Garnish:
  • 2 thinly sliced red onions and 2 tablespoons minced garlic sautéed in olive oil
  • 8-12 slices of fontina cheese or your favorite cheese
  • Heirloom tomato sliced
  • Fresh lettuce chopped
  • 8-12 brioche burger buns sliced, buttered and toasted
  • Chili-Glazed and Grilled Prawn:
  • 2 pounds 16/20 count prawn shell removed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons habanero jelly or jalapeno jelly
  • 1 tablespoon each of paprika chili and garlic powder
  • Kosher salt and fresh ground peppercorn to taste
  • Chipotle Whole-grain Mustard Aioli:
  • 1 cup olive oil mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons whole-grain Dijon mustard
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon dried chipotle chili powder
  • Kosher salt and fresh ground peppercorn to taste


  • To prepare the Grass-fed Australian Beef and Chorizo Burger patties, loosely mix together the ground chuck, ground brisket and ground chorizo, with extra precaution to not overwork. Gently form into ¾” thick patties, placing a thumb-sized dimple in the burger center. Drizzle with olive oil and liberally season both sides with garlic, onion, a pinch of sugar, salt and pepper. Set in the refrigerator to cool and rest.
  • To prepare the Charred and Chili-Glazed Caribbean Prawn simply toss all ingredients together until well combined. Skewer the prawn from heat to tail, as show in the photos, careful to not overload the skewer. Set aside in the refrigerator to marinate and rest.
  • To prepare the Chipotle Whole-Grain Mustard Aioli whisk together all ingredients in a small mixing bowl. Set aside.
  • Preheat the grill to high and toss a few chips of oak wood directly upon the smoldering coals or over the back corner of the hottest grill grates. When a whispy blue’ish smoke emanates from the grill – you are ready to cook.
  • Sauté the finely sliced red onion and garlic in a heavy-bottom pan over direct heat until well-caramelized, approximately 15-20 minutes. Meanwhile, grill the shrimp skewers over direct heat, flipping intermittently and removing from the heat when charred and just translucent in color, approximately 4-5 minutes. Set both aside.
  • Lay the burger patties over direct heat with the grill lid open. Sear the burger patty for 4-5 minutes, then turn down the grill heat to medium, flip the burger over, top with fontina cheese, a spoonful of caramelized onion and charred prawn. Close the grill lid, allowing the cheese to melt, the flavors of meld, and burger to arise to desired temperature. Remove loaded patties from the grill and set aside to rest for 3-5 minutes before plating.
  • While the burgers are resting, toss the buttered brioche buns directly upon the grill and toast for 2 minutes. To plate, dress both top and bottom buns with the Chipotle Whole-Grain Mustard Aioli. Lay fresh lettuce and heirloom tomatoes directly atop the bun, followed by the loaded burger patty. Smash it all together, pour a few handfuls of crisp, ice cold brewski and devour!

Written by Live Fire Republic
David Olson is a nationally-recognized American Culinary Federation Chef, television personality and international social media influencer, award-winning recipe developer, live fire grill master, global adventurer-extraordinaire, and the creator behind, "Live Fire Republic." David has an organic and attentive audience of more than two million households weekly via countless television and event appearances, his blog, and various print, radio and social media channels. Meanwhile his recipes and creative content continue to be shared across the web and in print publications from sea to shining sea. For all media inquiries, please email PR agency, The Lisa Ekus Group; Boston, MA - Jaimee Constantine, 413.247.9325 or