This simple, yet delicious Japanese style hamburg steak is made with 100% beef, onions and seasoned with salt, pepper and nutmeg, then drizzled with a rich and tangy homemade sauce. Not only is everything made from scratch, but it's packed with flavour and ready in just 30 minutes!
Disclaimer: This post contains Amazon affiliate links. Sudachi Recipes earn a small percentage from qualifying purchases at no extra cost to you. See disclaimer for more info.
What is Japanese Hamburg Steak!?
Burger without buns?
Okay, some of you might think it's crazy, but if I explain Japanese Hamburg Steak in the simplest way, that would be a hamburger without a bun or salad.
Yeah I know you might think "Why would you do that!?"
Well, but actually it's slightly different from just "burger without buns".
Origin of Hamburg
As you might have guessed from the name, the origin of this dish is Hamburg, Germany.
In the 17th or 18th century, people started making small meatballs from ground meat mixed with breadcrumbs called "Frikadellen" and that's the earliest story of the most basic form of hamburg.
Fast forward to the 19th century, German emigrants were making their way to the US and Hamburg steaks started popping up on menus around New York. It didn't take long for the popularity of Hamburg steak to spread across the US, not only were they delicious to eat but they were relatively cheap to make as well.
The Hamburg steak developed into hamburgers in a bun as we know them today, and became an iconic American dish.
Hamburg in Japan
It is said that the Hamburg traveled to Japan in early 20th century.
It was around the 1960's that the Hamburg started to gain popularity amongst Japanese families. Ground meat was fairly cheap to get compared to other meats back then.
Then in true Japanese fashion, they started to arrange the dish to their tastes serving it with rice and drizzling it with a Japanese style sauce.
What Ingredients are Used in Japanese Hamburg Steak?
Ground meat, Onion, Panko
These three ingredients are the heart of the dish.
People who like extra meaty hamburgs stick with these three simple ingredients, however some people add other vegetables such as carrot, cabbage, spring onion...etc.
As for the type of meat, usually 100% beef mince or a beef/pork mix are used.
Japanese Hamburg steak goes with a whole range of different sides, here are a few ideas for you.
- Potato salad
- Fried egg
There are many different types of sauce for Hamburg steaks!
The most popular sauces are:
- Demi-glace sauce
- Soy sauce base wafu sauce
- Tomato base sauce
- Teriyaki sauce
- Cheese sauce
There are so many kinds, just like regular steaks.
Real demi-glace sauce takes a long time to make so I've created my own special shortcut Hamburg sauce. Using juices from the meat mixed with a mixture of condiments such as ketchup and Worcestershire sauce creates a rich, sweet and delicious sauce with a slight zing. It's seriously good!