McDonald’s Quarter Pounder

McDonald’s Quarter Pounder

McDonald’s Quarter Pounder is an iconic burger loved by many. You can make this tasty hamburger at home with this easy copycat recipe.

The Big Mac may get all the glory, but McDonald’s Quarter Pounder is a better burger in many ways. With a far superior beef to bun ratio and limited toppings, you can really taste the meat. But you don’t have to hit up a drive-in the next time you get a burger craving. Try this McDonald’s Quarter Pounder recipe, or if you are a cheese-lover, make it a McDonald’s Quarter Pounder with cheese!

How to Make a McDonald’s Quarter Pounder?

Let’s Talk Beef

McDonald’s says their restaurants use a mix of chuck, round, and sirloin for their burgers, but your best bet for this recipe is sticking to ground chuck with about 20 percent fat.

The higher fat content lets you cook the patties fully without drying them out. But, all that juiciness comes with a caveat; there’s going to be a good amount of shrinkage. To compensate, start with patties that are a third of a pound, so you wind up with a fully cooked quarter pounder.

Resist the urge to season the ground beef before making the patties. Instead, do it the McDonald’s way by sprinkling salt on the patties once they are cooking. Seasoning like this prevents the salt from drawing out the moisture from the meat and delivers the same amount of flavor using significantly less salt.

Getting the Topping Right

Some burgers play second-fiddle to the toppings, and then some let the beef do all the talking. With only onions, ketchup, and mustard, this hamburger definitely falls into the second group.

One thing that separates McDonald’s hamburgers from others is that they use rehydrated dried minced onions. It’s best not to try to “upgrade” by using fresh onions since you’ll be losing their unique flavor profile. Put aside your doubts and take the extra step of rehydrating the onions. You won’t be disappointed.

McDonald’s used to serve Heinz ketchup, but back in 2013, they changed things up and started using their own ketchup labeled “Fancy Ketchup.” No matter. Any regular ketchup works in this recipe.

When it comes to mustard, go with the standard yellow American mustard. Even if you are not a massive fan of mustards, try some in this recipe. The vinegary taste helps to balance the saltiness of the beef and isn’t overpowering at all.

So, How Do You Really Order a McDonald’s Quarter Pounder With Cheese in France?

Back in the mid-1990s, this question puzzled theater-goers. Was Samuel L. Jackson’s character Julian in Pulp Fiction right? Do the French really call McDonald’s Quarter Pounder with cheese, Royale with cheese?

Well, it turns out that Julian got it mostly correct. The French call it Royal Cheese. So, the next time you are in Paris and craving a cheeseburger, you won’t embarrass yourself when ordering.

Tips For Making a McDonald’s Quarter Pounder

Cook the burgers on the right surface. A heavy cast-iron skillet or griddle is ideal since they hold a constant temperature. But any flat cooking surface will work. Just let it come up to temperature before cooking.

Don’t forget to toast those buns. For an extra crispy bun, spread a thin, even layer of mayonnaise and place cut-side down in a pan.

Check out our other McDonald’s-inspired recipes on YouTube!

Recipe Ingredients

Here’s a list of what you need to make McDonald’s Quarter Pounder with cheese:

  • Dehydrated minced onions
  • Ground beef chuck
  • Sesame seed hamburger buns 
  • Salt 
  • American cheese slices
  • Dill pickle slices 
  • Ketchup 
  • Mustard
McDonald's quarter pounder ingredients on a tray

How to Make McDonald’s Quarter Pounder

  1. Rehydrate minced onions with warm water for 15 minutes then drain off the excess water.
    dehydrated onions and water in a small bowl.
  2. Toast the buns in a cast iron or stainless steel skillet over medium heat for about a minute or until browned.
  3. Form the beef into 4 equal balls and place each ball between waxed paper or plastic wrap and gently press the meat into discs.
    four hamburger patties.
  4. Cook the patties in the skillet for 3 to 4 minutes on each side.
  5. Season the patties with salt before and after you flip them over in the skillet.
  6. Place a bottom bun on a plate.
  7. Place a slice of cheese on the bun, then a burger patty, and then another cheese slice.
  8. Top with pickles, onions, ketchup, and mustard.
  9. Cover the burger with the top bun.
  10. Repeat building the burgers with the remaining ingredients.
three homemade McDonald's quarter pounder burgers.

Love McDonald’s? Try these copycat recipes!

Check out more of my homemade burger recipes and the best McDonalds recipes here on CopyKat!

two homemade McDonald's quarter pounder burgers with cheese

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McDonald’s Quarter Pounder

You can make McDonald’s Quarter Pounder with Cheese at home with this easy copycat recipe.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword cheeseburger, hamburger, McDonald’s Recipes, McDonalds’s Quarter Pounder, Quarter Pounder
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 675kcal


  • 1 tablespoon dehydrated minced onion
  • 1 1/3 pounds ground beef chuck (this allows for some shrinkage)
  • 4 sesame seed hamburger buns
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 8 slices American cheese
  • 8 dill pickle slices
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon mustard


Onions and Buns

  • Rehydrate the minced onion with ½ cup of warm water for 15 minutes. Drain off the excess water. You can use fresh chopped white onion in place of the dehydrated minced onion.
  • Toast the buns in a cast iron or stainless steel skillet over medium heat for about 1 minute or until they brown. Set aside.

Hamburger Patties

  • Form the meat into 4 equal balls.
  • Place each ball of meat between two sheets of waxed paper or plastic wrap and gently press the meat into disc shapes. Do not press too hard, the patties may fall apart.
  • Cook the patties in the same skillet you toasted the buns. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes on each side.
  • Season the patties with salt before and after flipping them over in the skillet.

Build the Burger

  • Place a bottom bun on a plate
  • Place 1 slice of American cheese on top.
  • Place 1 burger patty on top.
  • Place another slice of American cheese on top.
  • Place 2 pickle slices, a teaspoon of rehydrated onions or freshly chopped white onions, ¾ teaspoon of mustard, and 2 to 3 teaspoons of ketchup on top.
  • Cover the burger with the top bun.
  • Repeat with remaining ingredients.


Calories: 675kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 38g | Fat: 45g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 17g | Trans Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 149mg | Sodium: 1540mg | Potassium: 580mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 464IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 552mg | Iron: 5mg

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