TGI Friday’s Inspired Jack Daniel’s Bacon Cheeseburger

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Jack Daniel's sticky, sweet & spicy sauce on a delicious bacon cheeseburger. Can it get any better?

I think TGI Friday’s is a restaurant we all have memories of as young adults. You probably had a date there, or watched games at the bar there. I went off to college and my friends introduced me to the world of TGI Friday’s, the only restaurant that would serve us alcoholic Cookies and Cream shakes when we were freshman. Looking back it is hard to believe I got all the way to college before discovering it, especially since it became a second home for our group of friends in pretty short order. Every time we went I would order something from the Jack Daniel’s menu. The sauce is sticky and sweet, but still a bit spicy. It works so well on ribs, chicken and shrimp but as a broke college kid, you have to go with the burger. Ten dollars instead of the twenty dollar ribs, it still had many of the same flavors. That sauce was addicting, we would dip everything in it. So as summer rolled around, and as many parents of small children can relate to, I wanted to recreate that meal at home instead of going out to get it.

Turns out the sauce is a huge hit on the internet and many copycat recipes exist. I tried 3 of them before deciding this one was the way to go. The sauce couldn’t really be any easier. Put the ingredients in a saucepan for 20 minutes on medium heat and you’re ready to go.Jack Daniel's sticky, sweet & spicy sauce on a delicious bacon cheeseburger. Can it get any better?It all happens as we are making the burger anyway. I always use fresh ground chuck from my butcher and season liberally on both sides with kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper. Then I cook it in a cast iron skillet. To be honest, I cook anything and everything I can in my cast iron cookware I love it so much.Jack Daniel's sticky, sweet & spicy sauce on a delicious bacon cheeseburger. Can it get any better?

Next cook up some bacon.Jack Daniel's sticky, sweet & spicy sauce on a delicious bacon cheeseburger. Can it get any better?I made the burgers with homemade Hawaiian buns (recipe coming soon) then added the burger and some sharp cheddar cheese (I’m a sucker for a sharp cheddar).Jack Daniel's sticky, sweet & spicy sauce on a delicious bacon cheeseburger. Can it get any better?
Then I topped it with the glorious sauce. That dippy, sticky, spicy and sweet sauce.Jack Daniel's sticky, sweet & spicy sauce on a delicious bacon cheeseburger. Can it get any better?Not sure there is anything left to say. Talking pretty much stopped once our mouths were full of burgers.

Jack Daniel's sticky, sweet & spicy sauce on a delicious bacon cheeseburger. Can it get any better?



TGIFridays Inspired Jack Daniel's Bacon Cheeseburger

4.67 from 6 votes
  • Yield: 4
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Course: Sauce
  • Cuisine: American
  • Author: Sabrina Snyder
TGI Friday's Inspired Jack Daniels Sauce that is a perfect topper for ribs, chicken, shrimp or burgers. Also works great as a dipping sauce


  • 1/3 pound thick bacon
  • 4 thick slices of sharp cheddar cheese
  • 4 Hawaiian Buns (white or wheat are fine too)
  • 1 1/3 pound fresh ground chuck
  • kosher salt
  • fresh cracked black pepper

Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon Tabasco sauce
  • 1 cup pineapple juice
  • 1/2 cup Jack Daniels
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 tsp Better than Bouillon Beef Base (you can also use two beef bouillon cubes)
  • 4 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce


Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.

  1. Put all the sauce ingredients into a saucepan and cook over medium heat until the sauce coats the back of a spoon and stays in place if you run your finger through it, about 20 minutes.

  2. Shape the ground beef into patties weighing about ⅓ of a pound each.
  3. Season liberally with kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
  4. Cook in a cast iron skillet, on high, 4 minutes on each side.

  5. Assemble burger and eat!

Recipe Notes

Recipe from

Nutrition Information

Yield: 4 , Amount per serving: 1185 calories, Calories: 1185g, Carbohydrates: 137g, Protein: 34g, Fat: 47g, Saturated Fat: 17g, Cholesterol: 143mg, Sodium: 968mg, Potassium: 883mg, Sugar: 118g, Vitamin A: 25g, Vitamin C: 11g, Calcium: 158g, Iron: 5.1g

All images and text © for Dinner, then Dessert.

Keywords: burger, cheeseburger, copycat recipe, TGI Friday's Inspired Jack Daniels Bacon Cheeseburger

Jack Daniel's sticky, sweet & spicy sauce on a delicious bacon cheeseburger. Can it get any better?

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  1. Wow – that sauce is amazing!! My son raves about TGI’s JD sauce, can’t wait to find out what he thinks of it. Its delicious!! I did adapt it slightly and used less garlic and onion powder, I also used a famous yeast extract spread instead of beef as my guests don’t eat beef.

  2. I can not wait to try this! I’m still using your recipe for the Copycat Panda Express Honey Walnut Shrimp, so I know this one will be a hit too! You do not disappoint, so glad I’m an email subscriber. Thanks for sharing can’t wait to see what’s next.

  3. Way too much Jack Daniel’s. Didnt taste like the Restauran’ts version at all in my opinion. Myself and 3 other people only liked it after the taste was diluted from putting it on the burger (and only in a small amount). But tasting it separately, all 4 of us agreed, it was very over powering and strong. There was also a bit of grittiness. My guess it had too much brown sugar and not enough liquids to dissolve in. Looks great in picture but this nothing like the original in my opinion.

  4. Looks so yummy! But I’m wondering, can you use Jack Daniel’s Honey Whiskey with the same recipe or would I need to tweak it?

    1. Thanks! You should be able to use the honey whiskey without any other changes to the recipe. The whiskey cooks down enough that the flavor difference should be minimal.

  5. This recipe has been chosen to be part of our Burgers, Sliders, and Dogs Recipe Roundup – we hope you will help us spread the word by sharing, pinning, and tweeting! All links go directly to your recipes and we hope you get lots of traffic! Kelli and Holli at Yum Goggle

  6. Definitely pinning this to make this summer. It looks SOOOO good, I kinda want one right now!

  7. This looks so delicious! I love a good burger recipe. I will have to try this on the weekend for my BBQ.

  8. Everything is better with bacon, right? I love this time of year. It’s the perfect time for grilling and serving up burgers with family and friends.

  9. Oh man. This looks amazing. I haven’t had a nice juicy burger in so long. This makes me need one asap! It looks amazing!

  10. My husband is a huge fan of bacon cheddar cheeseburgers. We don’t eat at TGIFridays often because its a bit of a drive from home. This would solve that!

    1. Awesome! We have a Friday’s close to our house, I just can’t muster the energy to go out to it with the young kids!

  11. That burger looks like it is literally dripping with goodness! I love TGIFridays I havent been in a while but this looks great!

  12. The Jack Daniel’s sauce is so good! I like to dip my french fries in the sauce. This is a delicious meal!

  13. That ultra thick patty and Jack sauce looks outstanding. Nothing in the world trumps a good burger for me!

  14. I’ve made a similar sauce and it’s divine; I’ve now got a new bottle of Jack Daniel’s Honey Whiskey on the counter; thinking I might have to try it with that. I can’t tell you how much I am dying for a hamburger right now. DYING!!

  15. OH I am SO excited to try this! I LOVE the Jack Daniel’s line at TGIFridays! I think I will make this for my dad for Father’s Day because he loves it too!

  16. This looks so perfect. I’d love to make a few of these the next time we’re out grilling. We do like the TGIF burgers.

  17. That burger looks thick and juicy, just how I like them! What a deliciously inspired burger for the season!

  18. wow – that burger is huge! My bourbon loving husband would really get a kick out of all those flavors merging. I can see him ordering this off a menu.

    1. I wish it was easier to go out more to dinner. Young kids inspire me to cook because going out is such a production!

    1. Thanks! Having just had the last one for lunch just now, I can tell you that you should totally make it! The sauce is done in no time, so most of your time will be spent figuring out more things to put it on! ha.

  19. Holy moly! That’s one of the best copy cat recipes I’ve seen in a long time. I can’t wait to try this.