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Old 03-01-2009, 12:56 AM   #1
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Determining amount of fat in each burger

When the nutrition label says how much fat is in frozen food, is that before or after cooking? For example, the frozen hamburgers I have say there's 29g fat in each burger. Does it mean there's 29g of fat before it's cooked? After cooking it there would be less fat, right?

So would there be a way to determine how much fat there is in a burger after it's been cooked? Last summer I was doing an experiment on this but I seem to have misplaced my data . I had weighed the burgers before cooking and then after cooking. After cooking them they weighed less. But I determined that cooking them in my cast iron grill pan (as opposed to my stainless steel skillet) made them weigh less since more fat was drained off. I was trying to figure out how much fat was in each burger after they had been cooked in the two different skillets, but I stink at math and never figured it out. I was also going to try out cooking them on the grill, but I never got around to it.

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Old 03-01-2009, 01:01 AM   #2
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I don't know how you'd calculate what you want, but some of what you lose during the cooking process is moisture as well as fat, so you would have to consider that in your evaluation. The burger weights less because it loses BOTH moisture and fat.
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Old 03-01-2009, 09:10 AM   #3
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To accurately determine how much fat remains in a cooked burger, you need a laboratory. As Katie said, the cooked weight difference isn't all fat.

The US Department of Agriculture has created a database of nutrition values for all kinds of foods. You can download it to your computer or use it online CLICK HERE to go to their site.

One of the options they provide is nutritional information for the cooked product when you know the raw weight. For example, you know you have a raw half-pound burger, their data will tell you the nutrient content of that raw meat after it's cooked.
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Old 03-01-2009, 12:35 PM   #4
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Hello everybody

According to my "food technology courses lab" I can tell that the amount of fat lost in the cooking process is not that much, especially for a Hamburger. Therefor you can consider that your hamburger once cooked will have around 29g of fat inside. As Katie said, during the cooking process you are going to loose water more.

By the way 29g is pretty much fat for a hamburger ! Here (in Belgium) a hamburger of 100 g owns around 10g of fat.

Hope it helped,

Take care
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Old 03-01-2009, 01:09 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by YourDietitian View Post

By the way 29g is pretty much fat for a hamburger ! Here (in Belgium) a hamburger of 100 g owns around 10g of fat.

Hope it helped,

Take care
I agree, I thought 29 g of fat in one hamburger sounded very high. I would shop around for a lower fat content hamburger. Or make your own from a lean meat and freeze them.

And YourDietitian, welcome to the forum!
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Old 03-01-2009, 01:20 PM   #6
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A 4 ounce burger made from 75% raw lean ground beef would have 28g total fat. After broiling, it would contain approx. 13g total fat.

A 5 ounce burger made from 80% raw lean ground beef would have 28g total fat.
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Old 03-01-2009, 02:43 PM   #7
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A 4 ounce burger made from 75% raw lean ground beef would have 28g total fat. After broiling, it would contain approx. 13g total fat.

A 5 ounce burger made from 80% raw lean ground beef would have 28g total fat.
yikes, obviously I have been hanging out in the barn too much....the total fat content of goat meat is between 3% and 4%...thanks Andy
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Old 03-01-2009, 03:13 PM   #8
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yikes, obviously I have been hanging out in the barn too much....the total fat content of goat meat is between 3% and 4%...thanks Andy

Wow, that's a big difference! I've never tried goat. The only place I ever see it is in the super market in Aruba. There, all I see are frozen chunks with bone for soup/stew.
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Old 03-10-2009, 06:29 PM   #9
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At my grocery store they have the ground meet labeled by the percentage of fat in it. I would imagine how much is left after cooking depends on whether you let the grease drain while cooking or not. However, if you're really concerned about fat, choosing ground beef seems a little inefficient...why not do a turkey burger or mix half turkey with beef?
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Old 03-10-2009, 08:10 PM   #10
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The meat market I go to sells special ground beef for burgers. 20% fat is the best TASTING burgers, and thats whats in their beef. They also do coarse ground chili mix beef, also 20%. I suppose I should cook healthier, but I cook for taste.
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