Wisconsin's Brat Burger Is A Match Made In Meat Heaven

The Badger State is widely known for its indulgent, diverse cuisine, including but not limited to beer, brandy old-fashioneds, cheese, Kringle, cranberries, frozen custard, and bratwurst. Brats, as the German sausages are so lovingly abbreviated by Wisconsinites, are a staple grub at backyard barbecues, parking lot tailgates, and pretty much any occasion that calls for food. According to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council, bratwurst can either be made from generously seasoned ground pork, veal, or a blend of both, giving it a unique taste that has historically pleased millions of palates. The savory encased meat, which is typically nestled within a split bun and topped with tangy mustard, sauerkraut, caramelized or grilled onions, and other appetizing garnish, can also take on a different form — one that, too, is a cookout favorite.

Behold the brat burger! A brat burger is exactly what it sounds like: a bratwurst's innards pressed into patty form and eaten like a sandwich. The medley has become a popular menu item across Wisconsin, providing people with a dish that offers the best of both worlds as far as handheld meals go. Here's how the iconic brat burger came to be.

The brat burger is a meat lover's dream come true

If you ever get the chance to sink your teeth into a juicy, perfectly spicy, mega-flavorful brat burger, you'll immediately understand what the hype is all about. Simply imagine the legendary heartiness of a brat in the shape of a burger patty, crowned with every condiment, cheese, and veggie your heart desires. What's not to love?

The brat patty is a fairly recent invention, much to the delight of sausage and burger lovers alike. Chuck Miesfeld, current owner of the Miesfel's Triangle Market in Sheboygan, which was founded by his grandfather, shares with The Takeout that flattened brats are not only slightly less messy than their tubular counterparts, but they also cook even faster due to their lack of casing. Plus, unlike your standard beef patty, brat meat can — and should — be simmered in beer before grilling to achieve an even better flavor and more succulent texture.

Midwesterner shares that brat burgers can be ordered at restaurants throughout Wisconsin, including Charcoal Inn and Schulz's in Sheboygan, The Old Fashioned in Madison, and Basil's II in Denmark. The Milwaukee Brat House and Louie's on the Lake in Cumberland also serve 'em. Johnsonville brand, which is headquartered in Sheboygan, even sells its own packaged, ready-to-grill bratwurst patties for at-home convenience. Next time you're looking to switch things up as the party's grillmaster, toss some brat burgers onto the grates.