WARNING: This Article May Make Your Mouth Water
Orange County is hip to some of the most experimental foodie creations, but sometimes you just crave a good ol’ juicy burger. You know, the kind that makes your mouth water and question if you even need any sides to complement it? Don’t worry—we still love a good fry! Here’s a complete list of the absolute best burgers in OC—from gourmet to homestyle and everything in between. Best Burgers in OC
1 | Craft House Best Burgers in OC
Must Order: Wagyu Steak Burger
Committed to the “craft” of making delicious food and drinks, Dana Point’s Craft House is a foodie haven for a variety of American favorites. The Wagyu Steak Burger is made with house-ground Mishima Reserve Wagyu beef, and the toppings are always changing. There is an element of surprise with this decadent dish, which makes chowing down that much more fun!
2 | Rock & Brews Best Burgers in OC
Must Order: Gastropub Burger
Rock & Brews in Tustin is the grand hall of rock ‘n’ roll restaurants that commemorate the legends. Their Gastropub Burger will rock your taste buds harder than sitting in the front row of an AC/DC concert. But the star is their freshly ground chuck patties, hand-formed and grilled to perfection, stacked with bacon, melted swiss, caramelized onions, greens, tomato, garlic aioli and a sunny and runny egg. For a healthier touch (or any vegetarians reading), you can always switch out the meat for the Beyond Meat patty.
Local Insight: The outdoor patio—equipped with cornhole, couches and heat lamps—is perfect for some fresh air!
3 | Tanner’s Restaurant Best Burgers in OC
Must Order: Shishito Burger
Tanner’s at Paséa Hotel & Spa is a stylish, seaside rooftop restaurant and bar, perfect for casual meet-ups and date nights. With a great selection of bar bites and artisanal cocktails, this surf-inspired restaurant’s Shishito Burger is packed with serrano aioli, shishito peppers, white cheddar and charred cabbage, all served on a brioche bun; it will help kick your evening up a notch and turn away that chilly ocean breeze.
4 | SOCIAL Kitchen + Craft Bar Best Burgers in OC
Must Order: Drive Thru Burger
SOCIAL is equal parts elegant, casual and modern. This bar and kitchen boasts a crafted experience with great options for every palate. Some places have multiple burger options, but this spot only needs one: The Drive Thru Burger. Akaushi beef patty, bone marrow butter, bacon jam, garlic aioli, American cheese, housemade pickles, red onion and an optional egg is all combined to make a burger that’s as savory and delectable as it sounds!
5 | Wild Goose Tavern Best Burgers in OC
Must Order: Walk of Shame Burger
We love a trip to Wild Goose! Whether it’s grabbing a bite on their expansive patio or enjoying a beer in the rustic saloon, there is always a reason to head to this neighborhood hotspot. Plus, when it comes to pub grub, Wild Goose knows what’s up. Start with the beer-battered fries and finish with the Walk of Shame Burger. This bad boy is loaded with a grilled beef patty, baby gem, tomato chutney, caramelized onions, cheddar cheese, bacon, a fried egg, garlic aioli, all wedged between a brioche bun. *faints*
6 | TK Burgers Best Burgers in OC
Must Order: Ribeye Steak Sandwich
You could call this beach shack burger joint the In-N-Out of Orange County. TK’s classic charbroiled burgers with American cheese, lettuce, pickles, tomatoes, onions, a secret sauce and special seasoning are every bit as special as the ones between the two palms, just with a bit fewer locations.
Must Order: BBQ Stout Bacon Burger
Tucked in Huntington Beach’s Pacific City, this tap house and burger bar is dedicated to serving up kick-ass burgers, tasty brews and the best views of Huntington Beach. Live the American dream and order the BBQ Stout Bacon Burger—signature chuck brisket patty, applewood smoked bacon, cheddar cheese, onion strings and BBQ stout sauce. Then, take a nap.
8 | Umami Burger
Must Order: Truffle Burger
Umami Burger is a unique burger spot that knows how to turn a burger into something special by turning it upside down and inside out. One of their most popular, the Truffle Burger, is the perfect example: truffle mayo, truffle cheese, truffle glaze—it’s a triple threat of taste.
Local Insight: Ask your server for the occasional off-menu items they might have available.
Must Order: A&O Burger
Balboa Bay Resort’s A&O Kitchen+Bar is a waterfront lounge that boasts local brews and seafood specialties. While the nautical influences carry through, the A&O Burger—an American Wagyu patty, white cheddar, caramelized onions, lettuce, pickles and ketchup on a brioche bun—puts up a noble fight against all of the seafood on the menu.
A&O Kitchen + Bar
Location: Newport Beach
10 | The Cut
Must Order: Truffle & Brie Burger
From their humble beginnings as a food truck to their wildly modern and rustic kitchen and bar, The Cut brings immense flavor to Orange County. The Truffle & Brie Burger is one of their carefully crafted fan favorites. It features an juicy beef patty loaded with truffle aioli, brie cheese, pickled onions and honey—a flavorful combination of zesty, savory and sweet.
Must Order: Classic Cheeseburger
Home to one of the best classic cheeseburgers out there, this little burger joint is exactly what it sounds like: a hole in the wall. Aesthetics may not be their strong suit, but when it comes to burgers, this spot doesn’t mess around. Hole in the Wall Burger brings their A-game with fresh ingredients and house-made recipes!
12 | Nice Guys 100% Vegan
Must Order: Mexicali Burger
Get your burger fix without the moo! Nice Guys in Costa Mesa is the home of Orange County’s first 100% vegan charbroiled burgers. This fast-casual restaurant serves up the same deliciousness you’d find at In-N-Out—seriously, it’s that good. Order the Mexicali Burger, which is the Nice Burger with bacon, guacamole, jalapeño and chipotle sauce.
Local Insight: They also serve up one heck of a breakfast burger called the Nice Breakfast (bacon, cheese, eggs, tater tots and ketchup).
13 | The Riders Club Cafe
Must Order: The Burger
This San Clemente shack may not look like much, but boy, do they know what to put between the buns. Their beef is ground daily in their shop, and each burger is dressed with lettuce, pickles, grilled or raw onions, house spread, and served on a Challah bun. For a plant-based option, try the Quinoa Veggie Burger with avocado, and be sure to ask for a beer recommendation!
14 | Native Son Alehouse
Must Order: BBQ Son
27 rotating taps, a dog-friendly patio and a full-service kitchen are just a few highlights of Native Son Alehouse in Santa Ana. This rooftop bar makes everything fresh and in-house! Try the BBQ Son burger, which is crafted with beef, bacon, American cheese, housemade smoky BBQ sauce, onion rings and caramelized onion on a sesame seed brioche bun.