1. Preheat a grill with a medium-high heat for direct heat cooking.
2. Break the beef up in a large bowl and season with 11/2 teaspoons salt and 3/4 teaspoon pepper. Gently mix just to combine, then form into 4 (4 1/2-inch) patties, making a slight indentation in the center of each patty.
3. Brush the grill grate with oil. Evenly space the burgers on the grill and cook, turning once, until grill marks appear, 4 to 6 minutes total for medium. (Resist the urge to press down on the burger with a spatula as they cook.) Remove burgers from grill and let rest 1 to 2 minutes.
4. Brush cut side of buns lightly with oil and grill cut-side down until light golden brown, if desired. Put a burger on the bottom of each bun and top with lettuce, tomato, onion, ketchup, mustard, pickles and bun top. Serve with potato chips on the side, if desired.
Ian Knauer for Cooking Channel