Using a paper towel, lightly grease a large stainless steel or cast iron skillet with 1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil. Heat skillet over medium heat.
Meanwhile, gently form ground beef into 4 puck-shaped portions, about 2 inches tall. Generously season with salt and pepper.
Increase heat to high until skillet begins to smoke. Place pucks in the skillet and firmly press with a stiff metal spatula until patties are about 1/2-inch thick and 4 1/2-inches in diameter.
Cook about 2 minutes or until a deep brown crust is formed. Using the spatula, carefully but firmly scrape the burgers from the pan and flip. Continue cooking about 1 more minute or until desired doneness is reached. Top with cheese. Transfer burgers to buns and top with desired toppings.