New York City has countless delicious burgers, the trouble is picking between them when you are only there for a limited amount of time. At Loving New York we love a good burger and have therefore tried many of the cities famous patties. Below you will find out which burgers we personally rank as the best in the city. These are our top 7 burgers in New York City.
The best burgers in New York City
The great thing about burgers in NYC is that there are so many of them. You will hardly find a restaurant, bar or grill that doesn’t serve its own version of the popular meat patty. So that you don’t have to suffer through an average burger when there are far better ones out there, we have compiled a list of our top 7 burgers in NYC. We have to say, the competition for the 1st position was tough and would go as far as to say that it was almost a 3-way tie!
Our recommendation: try more than one of these burgers and find your own winner!
Of course, a list of the best is always going to be highly subjective, however, we make sure to check back with our fans regularly if we have missed a burger out there that you think outranks our choices. Let us know in the comments what your favorite burger is and why! We have ordered the list below by the taste of the burgers, which as you can see was extremely close and a very hard decision.
Best burgers in New York
We checked out the top 7 burgers on our list in greater detail to show you why they are deserving of the ranking we have given them. Check out the details of the best 7 burgers in New York City below.
5 Napkin Burger
There are 4, locations of this amazing burger spot spread throughout NYC meaning that you are never too far from grabbing yourself one of the best burgers in the city. You can find a 5 Napkin in Hells Kitchen, the lower East Side, the Upper East Side, and one at Union Square.
What makes their burgers so good? You will know the second you bite into one: they not only look good, but the meat is very juicy (hence the name: 5 napkins – that’s how many you’ll need!). That’s why the 5 Napkin Burger definitely has a place on our “best burgers in New York” list.
Our Recommendation: the Bacon Cheddar Burger
We have eaten at the 5 Napkin restaurants many times and so have tried a number of burgers. First, we always get the classic cheeseburger, so we can compare it to other cheeseburgers from other establishments (let’s call it a baseline). Following that, we try the specialty burgers – our favorite here was definitely the Bacon Cheddar Burger. Crispy streaky bacon, great cheese, and crisp onions – Fabulous!
The sides are really good as well. You can choose from guacamole (our recommendation) to hummus which is, of course, a safe choice – who doesn’t love hummus?
- Price for the original 5 Napkin Burger (with fries): $16.75
- Price for the Bacon Cheddar Burger: $15.75
Photos © 5napkinburger.com
There are several Shake Shack locations throughout New York – their most well-known location is outside at the Flatiron Building in Madison Square Park. If you prefer to eat indoors, try their downtown location near One WTC, or their location in Brooklyn/Dumbo near Brooklyn Bridge.
The burgers at Shake Shack are truly delicious. The key to the second-best burger in town is its juicy meat that melts together with the cheese and their own (secret) sauce even before it reaches your mouth. Once you take your first bite you will notice that there is a perfect amount of each ingredient between the two fluffy and moist buns.
Our tip: the Double ShackBurger!
In our opinion, the Double ShackBurger is THE burger you need to try! That’s a cheeseburger with 2 patties.
- Price for a burger: $4.30
- Price for the Double ShackBurger: $7.99
Bareburger takes a close 3rd on this list, especially due to its build your own burger type of approach. In 7 steps you can pick a type of patty, bun, cheese, bacon, veggies, sauce and spread. With 18 locations scattered throughout New York City, you are also never too far from one. Our favorite is definitely the branch located at 155 Williams Street in Brooklyn close to the Brooklyn Bridge.
Another factor that puts Bareburger near the top of our best burgers list is its variety of meats. You can choose your patty made out of everything from quinoa to wild boar, elk, and duck! The sauces are also absolutely fabulous and offer a really unique taste to the burgers they serve. Everything is also organic making this place even more special. Our favorite burger is the Southern Caviar Burger, which consists of bison meat. All this together makes Bareburger a shop that exists within its own league, burgers are perfectly balanced, although we highly recommend you get onion rings as a side to make sure you are full when you leave!
Our tip: Southern Caviar Burger (bison!)
- Price for a burger: $4.30
- Price for the Southern Caviar Burger: $12.85
Burger & Barrel
Burger & Barrel is an American pub that serves first-class food and wine. It, therefore, makes sense that they call themselves a Winepub. The name also perfectly describes the atmosphere. All the casualness of a pub has been combined with the glory and quality that comes with restaurants that serve great wine. It is a classy yet basic, delicious yet simple kind of place. The same goes for its burgers.
Our personal favorite burger here is the Bash Style Burger. It also happens to be the winning burger of the annual New York Food and Wine Festival! The B&B Team has won this category not just once, but 5 times! Even if you are not in the mood for a burger, stop in at this restaurant (reservation recommended!). The Bash Burger is made up of onion & bacon jam, pickles, American cheese & special sauce. The burgers highlight is definitely the onion and bacon jam which adds the perfect level of smokey sweetness to the deliciously cooked meat.
Our tip: Bash Style Burger
- Price for a burger: $16
- Price for a Bash Style Burger: $16
Photos © burgerandbarrel.com
We had heard about the Minetta Tavern long before we finally decided to pay it a visit. From being featured in several documentaries to many recommendations from friends and family we had heard about The Minetta Tavern many times. The restaurant is inspired by French cuisine and specializes in high-end cooking. However, during our visit, it wasn’t their selection of sensational steaks that caught our eye, but the Black Label Burger. While the price is steep for what looks like a simple burger, the flavor combinations make this burger worth every penny. The burger is served with a tomato, caramelized onions, lettuce and a side of fries and a pickle.
The black label burger was juicy and full of flavor. The perfectly seared outside of the patty gave way to a pink, beautifully cooked, juicy interior. The meat is so tender it melts on your tongue combining perfectly with the fluffy bun and crispy leaf of lettuce. If you want a burger that is purely focused on the meat, this is it! No cheese, no sauce, and this burger still activate every last tastebud in your mouth. This ladies and gentlemen is the king of the beef patties we have tried so far. Definitely try some of the bone marrow as a starter, together with the burger this will make for an expensive but perfect meal.
Our tip: Black Label Burger
- Address: 13 MacDougal St., New York, NY 10012 (between Bleecker & W. 3rd Street)
- Price for the Black Label Burger: $26
5 Guys Burger and Fries
5 Guys Burger and Fries have now become a very popular fast-food chain around the world. Good ingredients are the basis of their success and give their burgers a great taste despite being classed as fast food. There are over 10, 5 Guys restaurants in New York meaning that you can always be sure that one is not too far away. Click here for a map of their locations.
It is important to note that all burgers at 5 guys are served well done due to their regulations. However, we have found this to not be a problem, 5 Guys manage to retain both flavor and juiciness in their patties and their burgers are first class. This is in large part thanks to the excellent meat they use.
Our tip: Little Bacon Cheeseburger
Even though this may sound surprising: the small burgers are our favorite here. Especially the Little Bacon Cheeseburger. Small, juicy, delicious – simply brilliant. Be sure to order the Cajun Style Fries as a side as they have just the right amount of spiciness and are a perfect companion to the burger! Overall we were surprised to be including a fast-food chain in our top burgers of the city, we have found however that few places match their quality. The key is that the burgers are perfectly balanced, with each bite you take you can taste each ingredient separately. The tastes combine while you are chewing into the perfect combination of grilled beef, cheese, and your choice of toppings. These burgers are truly something special. It also helps that 5 Guys all have an open kitchen, the anticipation to take a bite while you see your burger being made makes the whole meal a sensation tingling experience.
- Price for the Little Bacon Cheeseburger: $12.85
Photos © fiveguys.com
Belcampo at Hudson Yards
Hudson Yards is up and coming and offers a lot of really great restaurants. One of the many excellent places is Belcampo. Incomparably delicious, Belcampo promises to serve the highest quality meat —compassionately and sustainably raised. Anya Fernald founded the restaurant and butcher chain in 2012 as a humane (and expensive) alternative to the industrial meat complex and Belcampo now finally made it to New York City.
Our tip: Everything is really good!
Belcampo is located inside the Shopping Complex The Shops at Hudson Yards. Make sure to pair your burger with a glass of wine. Their wine collection is just as good as their meat.
Calling New York City home is still pretty surreal. After moving here 5 years ago, I still see it as my dream life. Ever since I’ve been exploring this amazing city for Loving New York I’ve grown to love it even more. I love hooking all of you up with the inside scoop, top attractions, events and everything in between. I'm your go-to person for the hidden gems, best restaurants and the absolute best things to do in the city that never sleeps.