Best burger places in Boston: 12 options where you can find the juiciest patties
There are many great places in and around Boston where you can try classic first-class burgers or the best original variations. With a variety of additions, toppings and enhancements, a seemingly simple dish becomes a highlight of the place, making it a favorite lunch or quick bite for locals and a lure for gastronomic travellers. We've compiled a list of the 12 best burger places in Boston, including vegetarian options. You'll find both expensive burger restaurants and places for a quick bite. Each of them offers something interesting, unique, and undoubtedly delicious.
1. Little Donkey
Berd Award-winning chef team Ken Oringer and Jamie Bissonnette use a fast food burger formula at their Boston establishment, which is complemented by a brilliant blend of haute cuisine. The public is presented with a play of textures and ingredients that draw attention to this small-plate restaurant in the heart of Cambridge's Central Square. Here you can try a dry-aged beef cutlet with melted cheese, spicy Buffalo pickles, crispy jalapeño chips and a little foie gras. Lipton onion soup mayonnaise complements the toppings, creating a dish that is both homemade and special. The restaurant is open daily from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday and until 10:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. You can also stop by during brunch from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Sundays.
2. Lola Burger
This lively restaurant in the Seaport District uses top-notch ingredients from local farmers and turns them into gourmet favorites. Based on the name, the main course at this Boston institution, an offshoot of the popular Lolo 41 in Nantucket, is burgers with fries and shakes. You can find all sorts of options on the menu, such as beef with brie and mushrooms, Korean-style pork with egg, a vegan version with dairy-free cheese, or a burger topped with 50/50 ground beef and bacon. If you're not ready for a choice, you can settle for the classic Lola burger with beef patty, cheddar cheese, and foie gras. The restaurant is open Sunday through Thursday from 11:30 to 21:00 and Friday through Saturday from 11:30 to 22:00.
Chef Rob Wong's creative maki rolls, ramen, robata-grilled kebabs and other dishes like a bacon-wrapped hot dog stuffed with jalapenos are the mainstay of the menu at this Japanese eatery in Fenway. But his burgers have earned the title of some of the best burgers in Boston thanks to a mix of umami and chuck and wagyu short ribs. The meat base is topped with American cheese, red onion shavings, original sauce, and dashi pickle chips that give it a crunchy texture. This slightly unfussy beauty is complemented by golden fries. The drink selection consists of classic frozen tiki, two dozen varieties of sake, and large servings of punch. This Japanese-style burger bar in Boston is open daily from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m.
4. Alden & Harlow
A basement hideaway in Harvard Square houses a bustling multi-room restaurant with a casual atmosphere. It's complemented by wood and brick walls and glass lanterns above the bar, adding warmth to the space. Chef Michael Shelfo's menu features a staggering assortment of contemporary dishes, but it's worth going here for the Secret Burger, which after years of praise has become a permanent fixture on the list and has managed to earn the title of best burger in Boston, MA. The 8 oz brisket patty is topped with crispy cheddar cheese chips, special sauce, lettuce, and pickles. All these are served on a homemade bun. This burger has already become a trend as it's made in limited quantities and sold out quickly. To increase your chances, stop by here during the day on the weekend. The restaurant is open daily from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. and during brunch from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.
A popular youth establishment located in Chinatown, Shojo, serves Asian fusion cuisine as artful as the bold graffiti on its walls. It would be hard to find a fan of good burgers in Boston who would deny their love for the Shojonator, a gourmet version inspired by Wendy's Baconator. This burger includes a quarter-pound patty covered with savory kimchi (kimchi+cheese) mixture, bacon, and egg. All of this is placed on a homemade steamed sesame bao bun. Other main dishes on the menu include fries, grilled Kung Pao chicken sandwich, ramen with bacon, leeks, egg, and kimchi fried rice, as well as cocktails, sake, and other drinks. Shojo is open Monday through Wednesday from 17:30 to 23:00 and Thursday through Saturday from 11:00 to 23:00.
6. Bred Gourmet
One of Dorchester's favourite places for burger fans opened in Boston in 2015. There are several popular burger options here like the Maui with pineapple slices, sweet bananas, smoked ham, onions, habanero cheese and BBQ sauce served on a potato bun. There is also Paris Burger with smoked bacon, fried egg and mushrooms, caramelized onions, and truffle aioli on a brioche bun. There are also vegetarian burgers with salmon. However, the best burger in Boston, the Bred Classic burger with beef, bacon, lettuce and tomato, remains the most popular. The restaurant is open Monday through Saturday from 12:00 pm to 8:00 pm.
7. Mr. Bartley's Gourmet Burgers
Some of the best burgers in Boston have been grilled at this Harvard Square institution since 1960, and it's become a local landmark. More than 20 burgers are served here, each of which is named after celebrities and politicians. For example, you can order the Bill Burr with cheddar cheese, lettuce, guacamole, red onion, and tomato or the Joe Biden with American cheese, bacon, and barbecue sauce. Salads, rolls, sandwiches and plates of spaghetti, meatloaf, and roast turkey round out the menu. The fame of this quaint, memorabilia-packed cottage has spread far beyond Cambridge, so you'll have to vie for a spot at this one of the most popular burger restaurants in Boston, MA. The restaurant is open Sunday through Saturday from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
8. Neptune Oyster
Neptune Oyster is conveniently located near the public market, but the crowd sometimes makes you wait for a free table at the door. The interior of the place is simple: light-colored tiled walls, neat tables and shared sofas add a retro touch. The most outstanding thing here is hearty dishes, such as lobster rolls, fried clams, scallops, oysters, and other sea delicacies in the most diverse form. Looking at the name, it may seem like this place has nothing to do with burgers. The North End eatery does specialize in seafood, but that doesn't stop it from serving the Neptune Oyster Burger, arguably the best cheeseburger Boston has to offer for seafood lovers. The juicy burger is topped with fried oysters, cheddar cheese, garlic mayo, and condiments. The restaurant is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Friday and Saturday until 10:30 p.m.).
9. jm Curley
This downtown Boston institution presents a modern interpretation of classic Boston burger restaurants and American diners. It's a great choice of place to grab a bite and a drink with family or friends: the food is delicious, the atmosphere is fun, and the service is fast. The Curly Burger with a mixture of brisket, ham, ribs with cheese, fried onions, pickles, and Russian dressing will be so memorable you'll definitely want to come back. Vegetarians can get the quinoa and black bean burger with cheddar, tomatoes, caramelized onions, lettuce, and jah mama sauce. The menu also includes first courses, soups, salads, etc. The restaurant is open daily from 11:30 to 2:00.
10. Lincoln Tavern and Restaurant
Now housed in a former department store building, this modern American tavern in the heart of South Boston serves classic dishes, grills, and wood-fired pizzas, with a great bar and a back dining room to hide away in when you're looking for a more casual atmosphere. One of the most popular offerings from the local grill in Boston, MA, is the consistently delicious Lincoln burger, which is a blend of prime beef and aioli with bacon, caramelized French onions, and sharp Cabot cheddar. It's topped with fries or a side dish (you can get a half portion). These are some of the most famous burgers in Boston, so the place is quite popular, but there is a pre-order service. The restaurant is open daily from 10:00 (9:00 on Saturdays and Sundays) to 2:00.
11. Nu Burger
Another great burger spot in Boston is located at Time Out Market. Nu Burger features an innovative approach to burger creation from chef Nina Festekjian of the Anoush'ella Armenian and Lebanese restaurant. It serves burgers made with Angus beef sourced from the best local ranches. There are meat options like the Artisan with boursin, roasted tomatoes and pickled onions, the Korean-style Bulgogi with spicy Asian slaw, bulgogi, pickled daikon and spicy kimchi sauce, and vegetable options with spicy cauliflower, cheddar, avocado, and pistachio pesto. You can also order the interesting Umami Truffle burger with pecorino, truffle, fried egg, and aioli sauce. There are also wings on the menu, and you can get regular fries or with parmesan and truffle as a side dish. You can buy an interesting hamburger at this Boston restaurant from Wednesday through Saturday from 16:00 to 21:00 and on weekends from 11:00 to 21:00.
12. Boston Burger Company
If you search for the best burgers in Boston, Massachusetts, then head to this Somerville restaurant, where you can expect something supernatural. They offer an extensive list of excellent burger options here, including some of the most unique. For example, the WTF Burger with braised pork, macaroni and cheese, pickles, onion rings, and spicy BBQ sauce, or the deep-fried Artery Clogger, a beer batter burger with cheese, bacon, and BBQ sauce. The burger comes with your choice of cabbage or baked beans. And to make your culinary experience even more extravagant, try one of Freak Frappe's signature milkshakes. The restaurant is open daily from 11:00 to 21:00 (Thursday through Friday until 22:00).