Like fire exits and bathrooms, you should always know where the nearest great burger is. That is why we made this list. Well, that and to have an excuse to eat four cheeseburgers a week for two months. Nonetheless, we now present to you our absolute favorite burgers in Miami - from a delicious Filipino creation in Wynwood to an old school cheeseburger on a golf course in Coral Gables. And after reading this guide, you can feel secure in your knowledge of where to find the nearest excellent burger.
United States Burger Service started as a pop-up behind Wynwood’s Boxelder, cooking their burgers outside with nothing but a portable flat top. And yet, even back then, they were already pumping out what’s quite possibly the best burger in Miami. They’ve since moved into a slightly larger space with an actual roof inside The Citadel food hall, but things have only gotten more delicious. Just what is it that makes this burger so great? A little bit of everything: the homemade potato bun dotted with poppy seeds, two perfectly seared patties, and some kind beautiful cheese sauce. It fits in the palm of your hand and has perfect proportions like a cartoon burger. But, thankfully, this beauty is real.
The Kush family tree is one restaurant group we’re happy to see grow. They now have six restaurants across Miami: Kush Wynwood, Kush Coconut Grove, Kush Hialeah, Lokal, Cafe Kush, and Tobacco Road. All of the above serve outstanding burgers, but Kush Wynwood and Lokal have the most burger options and variety. If you haven’t figured out how to clone yourself yet and can only choose one, go with Kush Wynwood. It’s a small, dim, fun restaurant on the outskirts of the neighborhood, and every burger here is phenomenal. The buns are soft, but stand up to the patty’s juices without getting soggy. Even when they get creative with additions like pastrami and guava jelly, it’s subtle enough to act as a sort of background singer to the meat itself, which is always the star of the show.
We don’t have enough sliders in Miami. We wish there were more places doing them right, because it’s a fun way to trick your brain into thinking you just ate six cheeseburgers without needing to take a personal day from work. But the slider is alive and well at Royal Castle, a historic Miami diner in Gladeview. They serve these in “6 packs,” which are plenty for one person. They’re warm, cheesy, and can be consumed in approximately four bites. Each one comes with diced white onions, a pickle, and a bit of ketchup and mustard. Every bite is perfect, a beautiful collage of all the flavors our brain associates with the word “cheeseburger.
Nobody nails the cocktail and cheeseburger dinner like Over Under. The menu at this Downtown restaurant and bar changes every so often, but their cheeseburger has been there since day one - and if it goes anywhere, we might cry a little. We probably wouldn’t be the only ones either. There isn’t an aspect of this burger we don’t love. The sesame seed bun is perfectly toasted. There’s a good amount of 1000 Island Dressing - a burger condiment we don’t see as often as we’d like - along with pickles, caramelized onions, and melted American cheese. Plus, the more of Over Under’s excellent cocktails you’ve had, the better it tastes.
Time machines don’t exist (allegedly), but Burger Bob’s might be the next best thing. This cash-only diner is located on a Coral Gables golf course. It’s been there for over 60 years, and you’ll have no trouble believing that when you see the red vinyl stools at the counter, old newspaper clippings on the wall, and the chef working on flat top that’s probably flipped thousands of patties in its life. The burgers also seem like they haven’t changed much in 60 years. A cheeseburger costs just over $5 and comes with lettuce, onion, tomato, and mayo. Is it a mind-blowing burger? Not necessarily. But it is tasty - whether or not you’ve just golfed 18 holes or want a little bite of history.
La Birra Bar is a fast-casual burger spot in North Miami. They have a borderline overwhelming amount of burgers to pick from - but if you’re having mild menu anxiety, go with the golden burger. It’s great and simple, with two patties covered in melted American cheese, finely diced onions, and a mayo-based sauce binding everything together. But the best part about this burger might be the buns they bake in house. They’re kind of a perfect burger bun - squishy but not soggy, and dotted with a light sprinkling of sesame seeds.
North Beach’s Silverlake Bistro is such a great restaurant. They serve classics like airline chicken and steak frites, simply and deliciously. But one of the absolute must-order things here is their burger. It consists of two patties, cheddar, porcini mayo, and strips of thick bacon, which are “optional” - but, in our opinion, essential. The double beef patties are perfectly cooked, and coated beautifully in melted cheddar. Another great thing about this burger: it comes with a big pile of crispy, skinny fries. There’s an option to make them truffle fries, and we can’t think of a more satisfying way to spend $2.
There are so many good things to order at Ariete - an always-exciting restaurant in Coconut Grove that offers everything from a duck press dinner to tamal en cazuela with sea urchin and pork fat foam. But, every time we come here, it is difficult not to throw the menu in the air and scream, “Chug Burger!” at the nearest employee. The Chug Burger is a towering burger, held together by a wooden skewer and every one of your fingers, which will grasp onto this thing like it’s the Hope Diamond. There’s nothing too complicated going on (except the dexterity required to eat it). It’s two patties, American cheese, pickles, shredded lettuce, and secret sauce between a sesame seed bun. But, like everything Ariete does, it’s perfectly cooked, meticulously arranged, and hits your table looking like the burger equivalent of a supermodel.
Our friends at The Infatuation NYC put Jeepney’s chori burger on their own burger guide, and after tasting it ourselves once Jeepney came to Miami, we understood why. Jeepney is a Filipino restaurant that occupies a stand inside Wynwood’s 1-800-Lucky. And the chori burger is a truly unique burger to Miami. To start, the patty is a mix of beef and longganisa sausage - which gives the meat a slightly sweet pork flavor. It’s piled high with pickled beets, lettuce, tomato, onion, and a fried egg. Also, instead of regular ketchup, they use a sweet and spicy banana ketchup. It’s a messy symphony of flavors that all work together to create Miami’s most interesting burger.
Smashburger aficionados, meet Ted’s. It’s a Wynwood pop-up operating in front of J. Wakefield on Saturdays and Sundays from 2pm until sold out. These are the best smashburgers in the whole city - the kind of smashburger that looks like it was smashed by Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson. (He played The Mountain on Game of Thrones, in case you were about to Google that.) Of course, there are some downsides to the fact that this is a pop-up. You only get two days a week to try this place, and they sometimes sell out early. But your effort will be rewarded in the form of crispy, lacey, cheesy beef.
There are a lot of factors that go into making a burger taste good, but perhaps the biggest one is the beef. If you agree with this fairly obvious statement, then Proper Sausages’ burger is for you. They’re a Miami Shores butcher shop - one of the best meat purveyors in town - so it makes sense that the wagyu patty they use tastes incredible, and is cooked to a perfect medium rare. They could serve that thing on two slices of stale white bread and it’d probably still be on this guide. But, thankfully, they accentuate the meat with a sturdy focaccia bun, a juicy slice of heirloom tomato, and some shredded lettuce.
Like Proper Sausages, Babe’s is a butcher shop in Palmetto Bay. So, yes, the patty is predictably delicious. But theirs is more of an old school burger - they keep it pretty simple with just American cheese, pickles, and sriracha mayo. The bun is one of those squishy burger buns, and it gets nice and steamed the longer you leave it in its wrapper. There are no fancy tricks going on with this one, but every bite is classic burger perfection. This should be in the dictionary under the word “burger,” in case you’re listening, Merriam and/or Webster.
The burger at Blue Collar is another one with a patty good enough to eat on its own with a fork and a knife. They grind their beef with a dry-aged NY strip, and the result is as flavorful and delicious as it sounds. Another thing we really love about Blue Collar’s burger is that it’s served on a Portuguese muffin, which is such an underrated burger bun. It’s soft, but thick enough to not get soggy, and has a slightly sweet flavor similar to brioche or challah. The burger also arrives unassembled, so you can build it with your ideal ratios of onion, tomato, lettuce, and pickles.
We haven’t had a conversation about Miami’s best burger without someone mentioning Pinch. It’s just undeniably good. And you won’t get mad at the burger’s thick patty, even if you prefer the thinner smashburger style. It’s really juicy and has a somewhat looser texture than the other burgers on this guide. Caramelized onions and a brioche bun add just enough sweetness, and the addition of bacon for an extra $2 creates an enjoyable sweet and salty juxtaposition. It’s a messy, two-handed burger for sure - but well worth borrowing your neighbor’s napkin for.
Orilla in South Beach is such a great “sweet spot” restaurant - right in the center of fancy and casual. We find ourselves recommending this place a lot because we love the restaurant’s design, the drinks are great, and the food is too. And, yet another reason (that we didn’t necessarily need) we love this place: they make one hell of a burger. The wagyu meat is the star, and why this burger costs over $20. There’s bacon and cheese involved too, but that’s about it - which is good, because it doesn’t need anything else.
Freehold is a casual outdoor/indoor spot in Wynwood great for a quick dinner before bar-hopping. Most folks are eating pizza here - and it’s pretty good - but we like their burger a lot better. This is another version that utilizes the wonders of the Portuguese muffin. Other than that, it’s a pretty classic double cheeseburger with American cheese, slightly spicy pickles, iceberg lettuce, onions, and tomato. It’s served with a big pile of French fries, and pairs well with a glass of champagne or a frozen pimm’s cup, which you can also find here.
Tap 42 can come in handy a lot - both because the menu is full of bar food crowd-pleasers, and because they have locations all around Miami (including in Midtown, Aventura, Gables, and Doral). And one of those bar food crowd-pleasers is their Prohibition Burger. It’s a reliably good burger that’s never disappointed us in all our trips to Tap 42. It’s big and a little messy, but we really like the taste of their patty blend, which is thick and very juicy. Also, the bacon and white cheddar play very well together on this burger. Thankfully, it’s on the lunch, dinner, and (bottomless) brunch menus.
Le Chick is a Wynwood spot mostly known for its fried and rotisserie chicken - but when we come here, we order the royale with cheese. This is not only because it allows us to feel, for a moment, like John Travolta’s character in Pulp Fiction. It’s also just really good. The patties - ground from dry-aged brisket - are thin, and covered in melted cheddar. A little shredded lettuce on the bottom adds a nice crunch, and the buns are soft but never soggy. Also, instead of a whole tomato slice, they use chopped tomato - which gives you some tomato flavor without risking the awful tomato landslide that’s ruined too many good burgers over the years.