Sixteen-year-old Lewis Richardson came off the bench to score a second-half hat-trick as the Clarets reached the final of the Lancashire FA Senior Cup.
Burnley will now face local rivals Blackburn Rovers – with the details to be confirmed – after finally coming out on top of a remarkable 10-goal semi-final against Rochdale at the Barnfield Training Centre.
Both sides led at times in a topsy-turvy first half which finished level at the break.
But Richardson then proved the difference in the second half as the England U16 international scored his first goals at under-23s level to make it six games unbeaten across three competitions for Steve Stone’s side.
In a frenetic start, the Clarets missed chances through Josh Benson and Rob Harker before Dan Agyei put Burnley ahead after Benson collected Anthony Glennon’s swinging pass to tee up the leading scorer to tap in from close-range.
Agyei then doubled the advantage from the penalty spot with his 20th goal of the campaign after he had been tripped in the box.
But Dale carried plenty of goal threat themselves and a three-goal blast inside nine manic minutes turned the tie around.
Harker had just been denied by Brad Wade at the other end when Jordan Williams slotted home to make it 3-1.
And with the Clarets losing their way, a quick-fire brace from Irishman Jimmy Keohane gave Dale the advantage.
His first was a delightful curler from 20 yards and his second a close-range finish which was rough on Clarets keeper Aiden Stone, who had made a magnificent double save to try and keep the visitors at bay.
Dale’s lead lasted just four minutes, though, as Bobby Thomas headed in a Glennon cross to level things up at the break.
And Stone’s decision to send on Richardson proved an inspired one as the youngster made an immediate impact with two goals from virtually his first two touches.
Both were predatory six-yard finishes as he firstly converted Agyei’s low cross and then knocked in a rebound after a Tinashe Chakwana cross had come back off a post.
But with the Clarets still not getting a grip of the game it wasn’t over.
Former Bolton man and current Nottingham Forest loanee Zach Clough clipped a shot against the bar before he pulled goal back from the penalty spot after Tunde Bayode had handled.
Rory Holden then struck a post as Dale hunted an equaliser to set up the possibility of a penalty shoot-out.
But that prospect was finally dismissed when Richardson booked Burnley’s final berth.
The young prospect had seen an effort saved by Wade after being released by Agyei but brushed off the disappointment to strike again 60 seconds later, this time keeping his cool in the penalty area to pick out the bottom corner with his left foot and set up the chance of silverware.
Burnley: Stone, Clarke, Glennon, Benson, Thomas, Wilson, Bayode, N’Guessan (Trialist 60), Harker (Richardson HT), Agyei, Chakwana. Substitutes: Calderbank-Park, Cook, Perkins.
Rochdale: Wade, Matheson, Dunne, Morley, Williams, Hamzat, Keohane, Adshead, Clough, Holden, Williams. Substitutes: Charton, Hoti, Yonsian, Neild, Tavares.
Referee: Martin Woods