Grilled Bison Burgers with Chipotle Ketchup

This chile pepper is often mislabeled ‘Pasilla’, which is a different pepper entirely.It is one of the most popular chiles in Mexico and has won the appreciation of many a chef worldwide because of the superior flavor it has over regular bell peppers.

They have a tough outer skin that usually requires roasting and peeling before use. These very large chile peppers are most popular in chiles rellenos recipes, but cooking with these as a substitute for bell peppers in any recipe will enhance the flavor.

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2 poblano peppers
1 tsp macadamia nut or canola oil
1 lb ground bison (buffalo) or ground beef sirloin
2 oz aged provolone, coarsely grated
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup ketchup, preferably Heinz
1 tsp finely chopped chipotle peppers, seeds and membranes removed
1 tsp adobo sauce, seeds removed


Preheat the grill or broiler to medium-high.

Rub the poblanos with the oil and grill or broil, turning every few minutes, until the skin on all sides is blistered and blackened. Transfer to a paper bag. Close the bag and allow the peppers to steam for 15 minutes. Remove the charred skin, stems, seeds, and membranes from the peppers. Chop coarsely and cool completely before continuing with the recipe. (Poblanos may be prepared several days in advance and refrigerated in a covered container.)

Place the ketchup, chipotles, and adobo sauce in a small bowl or measuring cup. Whisk to blend well. (This makes a spicy ketchup. Add more ketchup or less of the chipotles and adobo to decrease the heat, or more chipotles to increase it. The ketchup may be made up to a week in advance and refrigerated in a covered container.)

Combine the bison, provolone, salt, black pepper, and poblanos in a large bowl. Without overmixing, gently blend and form into 4 equal patties, approximately 1 inch thick.

Prepare the grill with an oiled rack and preheat to medium-high. Grill the burgers 5 to 6 minutes per side for medium rare. Serve immediately, topped with a dollop of the ketchup.

Makes 4 servings.