The Molecular Burger W/ Ketchup and Mustard Caviar




About: I love good food, who doesn’t? Millions of people make “good food” on a daily basis. Thousands of people have published cookbooks filled with “good food”… but good food gets boring… dull, dreary, mind-numbi...

One of my molecular favorites! This is a perfect example of a completely classic dish that has been transformed into an imaginative molecular masterpiece. This recipe comes from Molecule-R (, but I would consider it a must for all aspiring molecular manipulators! The bright mustard and ketchup caviar lend a visually stunning element to the dish, and as simple as it is to create, it’s ideal for impressing all at the next family BBQ.

3 cups vegetable oil
2/3 cup ketchup
2/3 cup mustard
2 packet Agar Agar

Pour 3 cups of vegetable oil into a flat bottomed dish and place in freezer for 30 minutes.
On the stove combine 2/3rds cup ketchup, 1/4 cup water, and 1 packet of Agar Agar. Stir and bring to a boil.
Remove from burners and with a pipette drip drops of ketchup mixture into the cold vegetable oil. Let sit.
*NOTE: Dripping from higher up will create more round shaped caviar beads. *
In a separate sauce pan combine 2/3rds cup mustard with 1/4th cup water and 1 packet of Agar Agar. Stir and bring to a boil. Remove from burners and with a pipette drip drops of ketchup mixture into the cold vegetable oil. Let sit.
Let mustard caviar rest for 5 min. With a bored spoon, spoon out caviar beads and drop in to a rinsing bath (bowl of clean filtered water). Swirl around bowl.
Garnish burger!

Conclusion: Mustard caviar tastes amazing! The flavors aren’t dulled in the least and it holds bead shape remarkably well. Long live condiment caviar!

Teacher Notes

Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.

Be the First to Share


    • Made with Math Contest

      Made with Math Contest
    • Candy Challenge

      Candy Challenge
    • Multi-Discipline Contest

      Multi-Discipline Contest

    16 Discussions


    8 years ago on Introduction

    The burger itself is not "molecular" in any way. What's been done with the mustard and ketchup is interesting, but the flavors hasn't been enhanced or changed in any way. What does adding agar agar do to the ketchup and mustard to make them more interesting on the burger than they ordinarily would be?

    This isn't a put down. It's just that 'molecular gastronomy' is more than just doing odd things to food because one can. It's about making food into a new and surprising experience through the use of items and techniques not usually found in a kitchen. many of your other experiments fit that idea, but this one doesn't seem to do so.

    3 replies

    Hi MB!
    Correct, the burger itself hasn't been altered in any molecular way. The point of this recipe is 2 fold. 1) This is one of the most popular starter recipes for molecular gastronomy beginners. This is not my recipe, but it was one of the first I tried out. 2.) More than anything I don't want people to be intimidated by molecular cooking, or think it has no relevant applications for a home cook, so this recipe I think really shows that even little molecular touches and twists can enhance a dish. Just imagine bringing this to a potluck, or spooning condiment caviar over a neighborhood/friends backyard bbq. It doesn't enhance the flavors, but it does give a common dish a much more fun presentation. :)

    So if the burger isn't made using molecular gastronomy techniques, why not simply call this 'ible "Ketchup and Mustard Caviar"?


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    It is a put down. I now know something I didn't know 10 minutes ago. I don't care what he calls it, or if he meets your standards. This site is used to share ideas, not to be put down. If you need to be a critic then go to youtube.

    I love all your instructables! Would you consider taking lots more pictures of the step by step process for those of us molecular noobs who are a little unclear about how stuff should look at certain points? Thanks for posting your beautiful projects and please don't ever stop. :)

    1 reply

    8 years ago on Introduction

    Couple quick notes here, there is nothing 'molecular" about this burger. Using agar is like using gelatine, it is basic. The other thing is the term "molecular gastronomy" is being used far too much.

    2 replies
    Ampersand Enickopa

    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    All of the ingredients do contain molecules but based on that definition all burgers are Molecular Burgers.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    My guess is that she is using these
    which means 2g.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    She is. If you check the link she posted at the end, you'll see a picture of it.


    8 years ago on Introduction

    Howe long does the "caviar" last and will heat "melt" it? I live in Phoenix and would like to try this, but it's really, really warm here even inside.



    8 years ago on Introduction

    This looks great! I love the idea of 'caviarizing' the condiments - much tidier and more interesting.