New York is a city of many foods, and if burgers are off your radar, well, you’re missing out. From smash burgers to towering bistro affairs to burgers that require a fork and knife, New York is home to some of the most incredible burgers in the country. Here are our picks for the best burgers in NYC, inspired by some of your favorite spots.
This Brooklyn Taiwanese bakery, deep in the heart of South Williamsburg, is home to more than exceptional pastries. Here you’ll find one of the city’s best burgers, the double smash cheeseburger with fries. Served only at dinner, this double-patty delight comes with bread and butter pickles, little gem lettuce, scallions, and a golden Peppadew-ginger deluxe sauce.
The classic cheeseburger at Ruby’s Café can – and will – blow you away. It’s a classic for a reason: premium beef stacked atop a potato bun and topped with melty American cheese, lettuce, tomato, onions, pickles, and, yes, even special sauce. An honorable mention also goes to the oft-ordered fried chicken burger with buttermilk-marinated meat, spicy mayonnaise, pickles, coleslaw and a sesame seed bun, which may be the best fried chicken sando in town.
Pastis is the phoenix that has risen from the ashes. This Meatpacking District restaurant is back, and so is its perennial favorite, the Cheeseburger à l'Américaine. The burger is an upscale bistro take on an American dish: double 4-ounce patties doused in melted American cheese and served with dill pickles, red onion, and special sauce, all on a brioche bun. The pomme frites come on the side, of course.
With outposts uptown and down, Quality Eats delivers a burger that is right on point. The Butcher’s Cut burger has won hearts all over the city, and for good reason: It’s a towering and customizable affair (pick your temperature, of course, but also your cheese). Like everything at this steakhouse, you may need a fork and knife to slice through this carnivorous sandwich.
Brooklyn lays claim to this simple-yet-perfect cheeseburger, the titular award-winning cheeseburger that proffers fresh ground beef, American cheese, grilled onions, pickles, and sauce on toasted brioche. Home Frite does burgers, hot dogs, chicken sandwiches, and fries – and that’s pretty much it – so you can depend on them to do a burger justice.
Whimsy abounds at this happy hour-centric cocktail bar that serves drinks, snacks, and more on Manhattan’s west side. The Happiest Burger is the sandwich to order here. It comes with two all-beef grass-fed patties, American cheese, lettuce, tomato, pickles, confit onions, and special sauce.
Williamsburg’s most epic steak experience also serves one of the city’s most epic burgers, the Luger Burger, served daily until 3:45 on the nose. With over a half pound of Brooklyn meat on a bun, this staggering sando can also come with cheese, bacon, and French fries, and it’s worth every delicious bite.
You may never have had a burger as creative as the one served at Brooklyn’s Five Leaves, which comes bedecked with grilled pineapple, house pickled beets, harissa mayo, and a sunny side-up egg. If your idea of a burger is highly stylized and you’re a fan of grass-fed beef with a little bit of an attitude, this burger should definitely be on your short list.
In Brooklyn’s Prospect Heights, LaLou turns France’s favorite bistro dish, steak au poivre, into a hand-held delight. The Kinderhook beef sandwich is topped with caramelized onions, Comté cheese, and au poivre aioli served on a brioche bun alongside a dainty market salad.
Chelsea’s Westville makes sure that you won’t miss the beef; their cast iron turkey burger leaves nothing to be desired. A fresh-ground turkey patty is seared to perfection and then served piping hot on a Portuguese muffin. Nothing could be better.
The cheeseburger is the name of the game at Blue Collar, a Bushwick spot that uses a brisket blend in their burgers. From there, it’s molten American cheese, onion, pickles, green lettuce, and special sauce for a crispy-edged burger that really is one of the city’s best.
The Burger Maison, available both in the lounge and for delivery, is a decadent specialty at Dirty French, the collaboration between Mario Carbone, Rich Torrisi, and Jeff Zalaznick, located in the Ludlow Hotel. Featuring pressed brioche, caramelized onions, and a side of pommes frites, this burger is an absolute must-order.
Perhaps the West Village’s most famous dinner joint, Minetta is known for its big steaks and equally big celebrity sightings. But those in the know opt for the Black Label Burger, a selection of prime, dry-aged beef cuts, caramelized onions, and, yes, a side of fries. It’s as legendary as the stars who adore it.
Brooklyn Stone Park Cafe has long been a neighborhood favorite. And what do the neighbors come back for time and time again? It’s the Stone Park Burger, which is simple and stunning: beef with your choice of Vermont cheddar, Maytag blue, pepper Jack, mushrooms, or bacon served with fries or a salad.