Why Do Hamburger Buns Have Sesame Seeds On Them? [Do You Really Need Them There?!]

Well, hamburgers are one of the most widely consumed foods in America thus they are everywhere. We are so used to seeing them that one might simply not wonder about all the ingredients of a burger bun. A small element of these buns is sesame seeds.

You might be tempted to believe what evolution these buns could have, if any, and the seeds were always there.

Weren’t they??

Sesame seeds are sprinkled on hamburger buns so as to elevate the taste and texture of the simple bun as well as contribute to making the burger healthy. They give the burger a sweet-nutty taste as well as provide a slight crunch. Both black and white sesame seeds can be sprinkled on the bun.

In this article, we shall look into the reasons for having the simple almost ignorable sesame seeds on top of Hamburger buns and how they got there in the first place.

Why Do Burgers Have Sesame Seeds On Them?

Most burger buns have sesame seeds on them mostly because of a trend that was started in the Americas. However, it caught on as the addition of sesame seeds to the buns elevated the taste of the hamburger as well as made the burger look more appealing than a burger without sesame on it.

Also, they looked much better in advertisements and they contributed to justifying the higher pricing of the burger looking from a commercial standpoint. Also, they give a feeling of making the burger healthy.

What Is The History of Sesame Seeds on Hamburger Buns?

There are various references, however, there is no concrete evidence of the same. Some fans credit Oscar Weber Billy or Walter Anderson for initiating the process of putting these little seeds on dough buns.

Surprisingly almost 5 parties have laid claims to have made the hamburger buns to what they are today as reported in an article in the Los Angeles Times. We might never know for certain the reality of it, since it is the food of the masses and thus its history hasn’t been well documented.

Although we know for certain that it was popularised by the commercial burger chains. Owing to the fact that sesame seeds on buns gave a different appeal to the burger itself. It looked much better in advertisements and contributed to the reasons that justify the pricing of the burgers as well.

Related Reading: Why Do Hamburger Buns Have White Spots?[Do I Need To Worry?]

Do Sesame Seeds Add Flavor?

Absolutely, sesame seeds on buns add a sweet nutty flavor not just to the buns but improve the overall taste of the hamburger also. In addition to enhancing the flavor profile, they add a level of texture by bringing a slight crunch to the burger and enhancing its nutritive value as well.

The nutritive composition of sesame seeds states that they are high in protein, vitamin B1, and dietary fiber as well as an excellent source of phosphorous, iron, magnesium calcium, manganese, copper, and zinc. In addition to these important nutrients, sesame seeds contain two unique substances, sesamin, and sesamolin.

Both of these substances belong to a group of special beneficial fibers called lignans and have a cholesterol-lowering effect in humans and preventing high blood pressure and increase vitamin E supplies in animals.

What Are The Different Types of Sesame Seeds and How To Use Them?

There are mainly two types of sesame seeds available today namely black and white. Both these sesame seeds release their flavor and aroma when they are dry roasted.

These seeds can be roasted in a pan for 3 – 5 minutes stirring constantly until they are warm and give out a nutty aroma alternatively they can be roasted in an oven at a low setting for 12 – 15 minutes.

White sesame seeds taste sweet, nutty and have a slight crunch. While roasted black sesame seeds have a slightly bitter taste to them.

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Why Don’t We Put Black Sesame Seeds on Hamburger Buns?

Black sesame seeds aren’t put on hamburger buns commonly as they have a slightly bitter taste to them. This bitter taste percolates in the hamburger as well, which is not very appetizing. However, many burger chains do put a mix of white and black sesame seeds on their buns.

This image is for reference only

Some burger chains like Burger King even use the addition of only black sesame seeds as a marketing strategy to market movies. Such as the Spider-Man-inspired Spider Verse Whopper, which consisted of a red-colored burger bun with black sesame seeds atop.

Then there are black burger buns with just white sesame seeds on top. Which are also widely popular. In fact, off late colored burger buns such as green, yellow, red, and black, are becoming a canvas to experiment with the addition of vegetables or artificial food colors to add colors to a simple burger bun and make the hamburger even more appetizing and appealing to the senses.

How To Make The Sesame Seeds Stick To The Hamburger Buns?

Some believe sticking sesame seeds to hamburger buns is a skill. Well, I feel it’s more of a trick than a skill that needs to be known. Some add seeds while the bread is proofing and some after the bread has been proofed. Well, In most cases one can be certain that somewhere from 10 – 30 percent of the seeds fall off even if you have got the timing right.

Here are a few tricks that will help you stick most of the sesame seeds to hamburger buns for a longer duration.

  1. Apply melted butter before you sprinkle the sesame seeds.
  2. A milk-egg wash can be used to hold the seeds on top of the bun.
  3. Applying just milk will also help to retain the seeds longer.
  4. Alternatively, if you don’t have any of the above then spreading a little oil to grease the buns and then sprinkling the seeds will also help retain the seeds.

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