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The 20 Best Burgers In NYC

fast food

This wasn’t an easy list to make. There were nights we woke up screaming, having dreamed of burgers chasing us along cliffsides, asking why they hadn’t made the cut. Whole days were spent in conference rooms with no food or water and no one going in or out until we came to a consensus. And while some of that might be an exaggeration, you should know that we have eaten a lot of burgers, and we are, in fact, burger experts. So here it is: our list of the best burgers in NYC. Trust us when we say that you’ll want to know what every single one of these tastes like.

In a city increasingly full of two-dimensional patties, the “Hot Mess” from Harlem Shake remains a top-three smashburger. We never thought ground beef could get this crispy until we tasted the edges on these patties, and the pickled cherry pepper-bacon relish is a very nice touch. Not to mention that Harlem Shake is exactly the kind of business we love to support. The owners do their best to hire from within the community, and they donate part of their profits to local charities and initiatives like Harlem Business Alliance, Harlem Children’s Zone, Harlem EatUp!, and so many more.

Peter Luger

You’ve probably eaten a full dinner here and have the steak sauce in your fridge, but you may still be missing out on one of the key parts of the Peter Luger experience: the burger. It’s only served at lunch, and it’s ideal for people who judge a burger 90% by the meat and 10% by everything else. It’s more than a half-pound of dry-aged beef served with nothing but a slice of raw onion. The meat is good enough to eat by itself with a fork, but you should still add a giant, thick-cut slab of bacon.


When you try the signature burger at this tiny Pakistani place in Bushwick, you’ll think back to a time in your life when you were constantly discovering great new things, like sunsets and scented markers. Instead of mayo or mustard, the burger has spicy mint chutney, and the big patty is somehow lighter than it appears. We could eat several of these in one sitting, and now that we’ve come up with that idea, we probably will.